Our Dying Planet: An Ecologist's View of the Crisis We Face

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Univ of California Press, 2012 - Nature - 360 pages
" Our Dying Planet is the most powerful statement on the future of life on earth I have ever read. Starting with the title, which I admire greatly, it delivers the sort of honest, accurate, no-punches-pulled assessment you would expect from a scientist who has seen the problems first hand. Coral reefs appear set to be the first major ecosystem to go extinct. Few people know more about this than Peter Sale. If every scientist were to speak as convincingly as Sale, the public might finally grasp the seriousness of the course on which we've set our planet."—Randy Olson, author of Don’t Be Such a Scientist

“Peter Sale's book shows us the exquisite sensitivity of ecosystems to the consequences of human activity. This is the anthropocene epoch, a time when human beings have become a force of nature, altering properties of the biosphere on a geological scale. Read this and you will know it is very late and we must act.” —David Suzuki, author of The Sacred Balance and The Legacy

“Disruptions such as overfishing, forest desecration, ocean acidification and pollution, and the wholesale destruction of coral reefs have already changed the earth disastrously. These problems will not fix themselves. For an articulate and crucial discussion of the mess we've made — and with some small hope for the future — you must read this book."—Richard Ellis, author of The Empty Ocean and The Great Sperm Whale

“A bold and convincing explication of the forces inexorably leading to an environmental collapse, and sooner than most people think. Sale, a leading ecologist, tackles some sacred cows – including the implications of human population growth – and shows the many synergisms between impacts that would be devastating even if they acted alone – which they don’t. No one will read Our Dying Planet and remain complacent, but Sale sketches some promising paths out of our dilemma.”—Daniel Simberloff, coeditor of Encyclopedia of Biological Invasions
 

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OUR DYING PLANET: An Ecologist's View of the Crisis We Face

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A marine biologist warns that at "our ecological bank account is in overdraft."Sale, the assistant director of the Institute for Water, Environment, and Health at United Nations University, (Coral ... Read full review

Contents

introduction
1
Overfishing
17
removing Forests
57
Disrupting the Oceanatmosphere engine
77
the Perilous Future for Coral reefs
107
Why We DOnt COmPrehenD
151
What loss of ecological Complexity Means
201
reducing Our use of Fossil Fuels
237
Slowing growth of the Human Population
261
10
273
Bibliography
305
index
323
Copyright

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About the author (2012)

Peter F. Sale is Assistant Director, Institute for Water, Environment, and Health at United Nations University and University Professor Emeritus at the University of Windsor in Ontario, Canada. He is the author of The Ecology of Fishes on Coral Reefs, Coral Reef Fishes, and Marine Metapopulations.

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