"We do not question that flesh and bone and leaf litter will decay to dust, that seeds will sprout season after season and find renewed nourishment in the soil, that rivers can flow endlessly without running dry, that we can breathe a lifetime without depleting the air of oxygen.... What humans have not fully appreciated until recently is that these services are the work of nature, performed by the rich diversity of microbes, plants, and animals on the earth." --from The Work of NatureThe lavish array of organisms known as "biodiversity" is an intricately linked web that makes the earth a uniquely habitable planet. Yet pressures from human activities are destroying biodiversity at an unprecedented rate. How many species can be lost before the ecological systems that nurture life begin to break down?In The Work of Nature, noted science writer Yvonne Baskin examines the threats posed to humans by the loss of biodiversity. She summarizes and explains key findings from the ecological sciences, highlighting examples from around the world where shifts in species have affected the provision of clean air, pure water, fertile soils, lush landscapes, and stable natural communities.As Baskin makes clear, biodiversity is much more than number of species -- it includes the complexity, richness, and abundance of nature at all levels, from the genes carried by local populations to the layout of communities and ecosystems across the landscape. Ecologists are increasingly aware that mankind's wanton destruction of living organisms -- the planet's work force -- threatens to erode our basic life support services. With uncommon grace and eloquence, Baskin demonstrates how and why that is so.Distilling and bringing to life the work of the world's leading ecologists, The Work of Nature is the first book of its kind to clearly explain the practical consequences of declining biodiversity on ecosystem health and function.
Author: Lynn Margulis
Publisher: Jones & Bartlett Learning
Release Date: 1999
This sophisticated coloring book is a beautifully detailed illustration of the world's living diversity. It is written for science students, teachers, and anyone else who is curious about the extraordinary variety of living things that inhabit this planet. It opens with an introduction to the classification systems, distinctions between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells, an introduction to life cycles, Earth history, and an explanation of how to best use this coloring book. The next section is organized by communities in which the organisms live. The final section details the variety of major groupings - phyla - within each kingdom and shows how the organisms in each are distinguished from one other. This coloring book gives a visual understanding of the enormous diversity of life on this planet and will be an enlightening and educational resource for students from a variety of backgrounds.
In this extensively revised and enlarged edition of his best-selling book, David Suzuki reflects on the increasingly radical changes in nature and science — from global warming to the science behind mother/baby interactions — and examines what they mean for humankind’s place in the world. The book begins by presenting the concept of people as creatures of the Earth who depend on its gifts of air, water, soil, and sun energy. The author explains how people are genetically programmed to crave the company of other species, and how people suffer enormously when they fail to live in harmony with them. Suzuki analyzes those deep spiritual needs, rooted in nature, that are a crucial component of a loving world. Drawing on his own experiences and those of others who have put their beliefs into action, The Sacred Balance is a powerful, passionate book with concrete suggestions for creating an ecologically sustainable, satisfying, and fair future by rediscovering and addressing humanity’s basic needs.
The human love of novelty and desire to make one place look like another, coupled with massive increases in global trade and transport, are creating a growing economic and ecological threat. The same forces that are rapidly "McDonaldizing" the world's diverse cultures are also driving us toward an era of monotonous, weedy, and uniformly impoverished landscapes. Unique plant and animal communities are slowly succumbing to the world's "rats and rubbervines" -- animals like zebra mussels and feral pigs, and plants like kudzu and water hyacinth -- that, once moved into new territory, can disrupt human enterprise and well-being as well as native habitats and biodiversity. From songbird-eating snakes in Guam to cheatgrass in the Great Plains, "invasives" are wreaking havoc around the world. In A Plague of Rats and Rubbervines, widely published science writer Yvonne Baskin draws on extensive research to provide an engaging and authoritative overview of the problem of harmful invasive alien species. She takes the reader on a worldwide tour of grasslands, gardens, waterways, and forests, describing the troubles caused by exotic organisms that run amok in new settings and examining how commerce and travel on an increasingly connected planet are exacerbating this oldest of human-created problems. She offers examples of potential solutions and profiles dedicated individuals worldwide who are working tirelessly to protect the places and creatures they love. While our attention is quick to focus on purposeful attempts to disrupt our lives and economies by releasing harmful biological agents, we often ignore equally serious but much more insidious threats, those that we inadvertently cause by our own seemingly harmless actions. A Plague of Rats and Rubbervines takes a compelling look at this underappreciated problem and sets forth positive suggestions for what we as consumers, gardeners, travelers, nurserymen, fishermen, pet owners, business people -- indeed all of us who by our very local choices drive global commerce -- can do to help. "
Author: Robert P. Clark
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Pub Inc
Release Date: 2000
Robert P. Clark develops in this book a global life systems perspective that delineates how biological forces mutually reinforce one another--and what their globalization has meant for both human society and the biosphere. While he resists biological determinism, Clark traces interconnected developments among population, disease, agriculture, trade, fuels, and other life systems to more thoroughly explore and elucidate the globalization of human endeavors within an ever evolving context of nature and environment.
Author: William C. Frederick
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Release Date: 1995-09-21
Genre: Business & Economics
In Values, Nature, and Culture in the American Corporation, distinguished ethicist William Frederick explores issues of fundamental importance to all who aspire to conduct their business affairs ethically. He begins with an examination of the three value systems in business that are basically incompatible, and therefore in constant tension. The first is the need for managers to efficiently allocate resources for maximum profits. The second is the natural tendency for managers, in pursuit of the first goal, to accumulate power for its own sake. The third is the desire for people in the community to create relationships that will perpetuate these communities. Frederick brings in a range of ideas and concepts from the social sciences as well as the natural sciences to illuminate his discussion. In the final section of the book he explores a range of issues of current concern to managers, including corporate culture and technology.
Author: Shannon K Vaughan
Publisher: CQ Press
Release Date: 2013-01-08
Genre: Business & Economics
In explicitly tying the policy realm to management skills, this book sheds new light on how nonprofit managers can better navigate policymaking and regulatory contexts to effectively lead their organizations.
Author: Edward O Wilson
Publisher: Penguin UK
Release Date: 2001-04-26
"Not since Darwin has an author so lifted the science of ecology with insight and delightful imagery" - Richard Dawkins In this book a master scientist tells the great story of how life on earth evolved. E.O. Wilson eloquently describes how the species of the world became diverse, and why the threat to this diversity today is beyond the scope of anything we have known before. In an extensive new foreword for this edition, Professor Wilson addresses the explosion of the field of conservation biology and takes a clear-eyed look at the work still to be done.
This is a helpful first reader for anyone confused by other books that seek to connect science and religion. The author?s ?essential continuity principle? provides a scientific basis for linking energy and matter (earth) with evolved soul and body (spirit).