ONE OF THE NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW'S 10 BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR A major book about the future of the world, blending intellectual and natural history and field reporting into a powerful account of the mass extinction unfolding before our eyes Over the last half a billion years, there have been five mass extinctions, when the diversity of life on earth suddenly and dramatically contracted. Scientists around the world are currently monitoring the sixth extinction, predicted to be the most devastating extinction event since the asteroid impact that wiped out the dinosaurs. This time around, the cataclysm is us. In The Sixth Extinction, two-time winner of the National Magazine Award and New Yorker writer Elizabeth Kolbert draws on the work of scores of researchers in half a dozen disciplines, accompanying many of them into the field: geologists who study deep ocean cores, botanists who follow the tree line as it climbs up the Andes, marine biologists who dive off the Great Barrier Reef. She introduces us to a dozen species, some already gone, others facing extinction, including the Panamian golden frog, staghorn coral, the great auk, and the Sumatran rhino. Through these stories, Kolbert provides a moving account of the disappearances occurring all around us and traces the evolution of extinction as concept, from its first articulation by Georges Cuvier in revolutionary Paris up through the present day. The sixth extinction is likely to be mankind's most lasting legacy; as Kolbert observes, it compels us to rethink the fundamental question of what it means to be human.
"Over the last half billion years, there have been five major mass extinctions, when the diversity of life on Earth suddenly and dramatically contracted. Scientists are currently monitoring the sixth extinction, predicted to be the most devastating since the asteroid impact that wiped out the dinosaurs. This time around the cataclysm is us. In this book the author tells us why and how human beings have altered life on the planet in a way no species has before. She provides a moving account of the disappearances of various species occurring all around us and traces the evolution of extinction as concept, from its first articulation by Georges Cuvier in revolutionary Paris up to Lyell and Darwin, and through the present day. The sixth extinction is likely to be mankind's most lasting legacy, compelling us to rethink the fundamental question of what it means to be human". -- Back cover.
Over the last half a billion years, there have been five mass extinctions of life on earth. Scientists around the world are currently monitoring the sixth, predicted to be the most devastating extinction event since the asteroid impact that wiped out the dinosaurs. Elizabeth Kolbert combines brilliant field reporting, the history of ideas and the work of geologists, botanists and marine biologists to tell the gripping stories of a dozen species – including the Panamanian golden frog and the Sumatran rhino – some already gone, others at the point of vanishing. The sixth extinction is likely to be mankind's most lasting legacy and Elizabeth Kolbert's book urgently compels us to rethink the fundamental question of what it means to be human.
The NEW YORK TIMES bestselling author returns with a gripping, high-concept adventure thriller in the Sigma Force series - for fans of Dan Brown and Michael Crichton. A remote military research station in Utah sends out a frantic distress call, ending with a chilling final command: Kill us all! By the time help arrives every living thing for fifty miles has been annihilated. And blight is spreading. To halt the inevitable, Commander Gray Pierce and Sigma must unravel a threat that rises out of the distant past, to a time when Antarctica was green and life on Earth balanced on a knife edge. Following clues from an ancient map rescued from the lost Library of Alexandria, Sigma will discover the truth about an ancient continent, about a new form of death buried under miles of ice, and the coming extinction of mankind.
A new edition of the book that launched Elizabeth Kolbert's career as an environmental writer-updated with three new chapters, making it, yet again, "irreplaceable" (Boston Globe). Elizabeth Kolbert's environmental classic Field Notes from a Catastrophe first developed out of a groundbreaking, National Magazine Award-winning three-part series in The New Yorker. She expanded it into a still-concise yet richly researched and damning book about climate change: a primer on the greatest challenge facing the world today. But in the years since, the story has continued to develop; the situation has become more dire, even as our understanding grows. Now, Kolbert returns to the defining book of her career. She has added a chapter bringing things up-to-date on the existing text, plus three new chapters--on ocean acidification, the tar sands, and a Danish town that's gone carbon neutral--making it, again, a must-read for our moment.
Elaborate pop-ups feature some wonderfully creepy creatures that just might dominate the ecosystem and be essential to our planet's survival in an eerily realistic future world. Whether or not we know it, the sixth global extinction is already under way, propelled not by a meteor but by human activity on Earth. Take a long step forward into the year 4847 with the help of stunning pop-ups portraying eight fantastical creatures, along with spreads and flaps presenting details about each one. Paper engineer Shawn Sheehy envisions the aftermath of extinction as a flourishing ecosystem centered around fictional creatures that could evolve from existing organisms. Promising high appeal for science-fiction fans of all ages -- and plenty of food for discussion -- this evolutionary extravaganza offers a time line of the six extinction events in Earth's history, a "field guide" to each creature, a diagram of species relationships, a habitat map of the (imagined) ruins of Chicago, and an illuminating author's note.
In Life in the Balance, Niles Eldredge argues that the Earth is confronting an ecological disaster in the making. He reviews compelling evidence for this "biodiversity crisis", showing that species are dying out at an unnaturally rapid rate. This book explores the same themes that illuminate the American Museum of Natural History's new Hall of Biodiversity, for which Eldredge is Scientific Curator. An eloquent and passionate account by one of today's leading scientists, Life in the Balance draws attention to one of the most pressing problems now facing the world. Copyright © Libri GmbH. All rights reserved.
One of Vox’s Most Important Books of the Decade New York Times Editors' Choice 2017 Forbes Top 10 Best Environment, Climate, and Conservation Book of 2017 As new groundbreaking research suggests that climate change played a major role in the most extreme catastrophes in the planet's history, award-winning science journalist Peter Brannen takes us on a wild ride through the planet's five mass extinctions and, in the process, offers us a glimpse of our increasingly dangerous future Our world has ended five times: it has been broiled, frozen, poison-gassed, smothered, and pelted by asteroids. In The Ends of the World, Peter Brannen dives into deep time, exploring Earth’s past dead ends, and in the process, offers us a glimpse of our possible future. Many scientists now believe that the climate shifts of the twenty-first century have analogs in these five extinctions. Using the visible clues these devastations have left behind in the fossil record, The Ends of the World takes us inside “scenes of the crime,” from South Africa to the New York Palisades, to tell the story of each extinction. Brannen examines the fossil record—which is rife with creatures like dragonflies the size of sea gulls and guillotine-mouthed fish—and introduces us to the researchers on the front lines who, using the forensic tools of modern science, are piecing together what really happened at the crime scenes of the Earth’s biggest whodunits. Part road trip, part history, and part cautionary tale, The Ends of the World takes us on a tour of the ways that our planet has clawed itself back from the grave, and casts our future in a completely new light.
Over the last 530 million years there have been five mass extinctions of species-the last,65 million years ago,when the dinosaurs disappeared.The biodiversity of our planet may now be on the verge,Leakey and Lewin believe,of a sixth extinction,caused this time by the relentless expansion and limitless appetites of human beings. The new science of 'biodiversity',presented clearly and cogently by Leakey and Lewin,combines insights from palaeontology,biology,ecology and even economics.It integrates the role of Darwenian evolution with the increasingly recognised importance of external and unpredictable forces.