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From the depths of the oceans to the highest reaches of the atmosphere, the human impact on the environment is significant and undeniable. These forms of global and local environmental change collectively appear to signal the arrival of a new geological epoch: the Anthropocene. This is a geological era defined not by natural environmental fluctuations or meteorite impacts, but by collective actions of humanity. Environmental Transformations offers a concise and accessible introduction to the human practices and systems that sustain the Anthropocene. It combines accounts of the carbon cycle, global heat balances, entropy, hydrology, forest ecology and pedology, with theories of demography, war, industrial capitalism, urban development, state theory and behavioural psychology. This book charts the particular role of geography and geographers in studying environmental change and its human drivers. It provides a review of critical theories that can help to uncover the socio-economic and political factors that influence environmental change. It also explores key issues in contemporary environmental studies, such as resource use, water scarcity, climate change, industrial pollution and deforestation. These issues are ‘mapped’ through a series of geographical case studies to illustrate the particular value of geographical notions of space, place and scale, in uncovering the complex nature of environmental change in different socio-economic, political and cultural contexts. Finally, the book considers the different ways in which nations, communities and individuals around the world are adapting to environmental change in the twenty-first century. Particular attention is given throughout to the uneven geographical opportunities that different communities have to adapt to environmental change and to the questions of social justice this situation raises. This book encourages students to engage in the scientific uncertainties that surround the study of environmental change, while also discussing both pessimistic and more optimistic views on the ability of humanity to address the environmental challenges of our current era.
There is persuasive evidence suggesting we are on the brink of human-induced ecological disaster that could change life on Earth as we know it. There is also a general consensus among scientists about the pace and extent of global ecological decay, including a realisation that humans are central to causing the global socio-ecological crisis. This new epoch has been called the Anthropocene. Considering the many benefits that constitutional environmental protection holds out in domestic legal orders, it is likely that a constitutionalised form of global environmental law and governance would be better able to counter the myriad exigencies of the Anthropocene. This book seeks to answer this central question: from the perspective of the Anthropocene, what is environmental constitutionalism and how could it be extrapolated to formulate a global framework? In answering this question, this book offers the first systematic conceptual framework for global environmental constitutionalism in the epoch of the Anthropocene.
China is home to half of the worldÕs large dams and adds dozens more each year. The benefits are considerable: dams deliver hydropower, provide reliable irrigation water, protect people and farmland against flooding, and produce hydroelectricity in a nation with a seeimingly insatiable appetite for energy. As hydropower responds to a larger share of energy demand, dams may also help to reduce the consumption of fossil fuels, welcome news in a country where air and water pollution have become dire and greenhouse gas emissions are the highest in the world. Yet the advantages of dams come at a high cost for river ecosystems and for the social and economic well-being of local people, who face displacement and farmland loss. This book examines the array of water-management decisions faced by Chinese leaders and their consequences for local communities. Focusing on the southwestern province of YunnanÑa major hub for hydropower development in ChinaÑwhich encompasses one of the worldÕs most biodiverse temperate ecosystems and one of ChinaÕs most ethnically and culturally rich regions, Bryan Tilt takes the reader from the halls of decision-making power in Beijing to YunnanÕs rural villages. In the process, he examines the contrasting values of government agencies, hydropower corporations, NGOs, and local communities and explores how these values are linked to longstanding cultural norms about what is right, proper, and just. He also considers the various strategies these groups use to influence water-resource policy, including advocacy, petitioning, and public protest. Drawing on a decade of research, he offers his insights on whether the worldÕs most populous nation will adopt greater transparency, increased scientific collaboration, and broader public participation as it continues to grow economically.
This book brings the field of tourism into dialogue with what is captured under the varied notions of the Anthropocene. It explores issues and challenges which the Anthropocene may pose for tourism, and it offers significant insights into how it might reframe conceptual and empirical undertakings in tourism research. Furthermore, through the lens of the Anthropocene this book also spurs thinking of the role of tourism in relation to sustainable development, planetary boundaries, ethics (and what is framed as geo-ethics) and refocused tourism theory to make sense of tourism’s earthly entanglements and thinking tourism beyond Nature-Society. The multidisciplinary nature of the material will appeal to a broad academic audience, such as those working in tourism, geography, anthropology and sociology.
The world faces an environmental crisis unprecedented in human history. Carbon dioxide levels have reached heights not seen for three million years, and the greatest mass extinction since the time of the dinosaurs appears to be underway. Such far-reaching changes suggest something remarkable: the beginning of a new geological epoch. It has been called the Anthropocene. The Birth of the Anthropocene shows how this epochal transformation puts the deep history of the planet at the heart of contemporary environmental politics. By opening a window onto geological time, the idea of the Anthropocene changes our understanding of present-day environmental destruction and injustice. Linking new developments in earth science to the insights of world historians, Jeremy Davies shows that as the Anthropocene epoch begins, politics and geology have become inextricably entwined.
Dissecting the new theoretical buzzword of the “Anthropocene” The Earth has entered a new epoch: the Anthropocene. What we are facing is not only an environmental crisis, but a geological revolution of human origin. In two centuries, our planet has tipped into a state unknown for millions of years. How did we get to this point? Refuting the convenient view of a “human species” that upset the Earth system, unaware of what it was doing, this book proposes the first critical history of the Anthropocene, shaking up many accepted ideas: about our supposedly recent “environmental awareness,” about previous challenges to industrialism, about the manufacture of ignorance and consumerism, about so-called energy transitions, as well as about the role of the military in environmental destruction. In a dialogue between science and history, The Shock of the Anthropocene dissects a new theoretical buzzword and explores paths for living and acting politically in this rapidly developing geological epoch.
Using the story of the “West and the world” as its backdrop, this book provides for beginning students a clear and concise introduction to Human Geography, including its key concepts, seminal thinkers and their theories, contemporary debates, and celebrated case studies. Introduces and applies the basic concepts of human geography in clear, concise, and engaging prose Explores the significance of the rise, reign, and faltering of the West from around the fifteenth century in the shaping of the key demographic, environmental, social, economic, political, and cultural processes active in the world today Addresses important thinkers, debates, and theories in an accessible manner with a focus on discerning the inherent Western bias in human geographical ideas Incorporates case studies that explore human geographies which are being made in both Western and non Western regions, including Latin America, Africa and Asia. Is written so as to be accessible to students and contains chapter learning objectives, checklists of key ideas, chapter essay questions, zoom in boxes, guidance for further reading and a book glossary. Accompanied by a website at featuring, for students, tutorial exercises, bonus zoom in boxes, links to further learning resources and biographies of key thinkers, and for instructors, further essay questions, multiple choice exam questions, and ppt lecture slides for each chapter.

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