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This Borrowed Earth: Lessons from the Fifteen Worst Environmental Disasters around the World (Macmillan Science) [Paperback]

Robert Emmet Hernan
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: 16.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

21 Jan 2010 Macmillan Science
Humanity has the potential to preserve the earth for future generations or cause irreparable harm. For the first time here, environmental lawyer and activist Robert Emmet Hernan provides a comprehensive, up-to-date treatment of what happened at fifteen environmental disasters in ten countries across the globe.

Product details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan (21 Jan 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780230619838
  • ISBN-13: 978-0230619838
  • ASIN: 0230619835
  • Product Dimensions: 23.4 x 16.7 x 1.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 767,430 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description


'...His style is readable and persuasive, his points not to be ignored.' - The Good Book Guide
'This Borrowed Earth: Lessons from Fifteen Environmental Disasters Around the World, powerfully depicts in simple, transparent prose, the lasting and wrenching impact of some of the major environmental disasters of the last century, which younger generations may only barely remember.  But Mr. Hernan's book does much more. It reveals a striking similarity in the genesis of these disasters that can shed light on ways to prevent them in the future – in particular, the profit-driven development of production technologies with no heed to their health and environmental effects or the environmental fate of their products.  One is convinced, after reading Mr. Hernan's book, that the only way to slow the rate of growth of devastating climate change is for governments around the world to assert control over our most basic technology – the production of energy in ways that can lift the world out of poverty without destroying it in the process.' - Barry Commoner, American biologist

Book Description

A piercing look at the worst environmental disasters of the 20th century with a foreword from environmental guru Bill McKibben

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book 20 Sep 2010
Well, I've read this book in a very short time because it is written in a very good style. Moreover, this made me conscious about the main environmental disasters and their causes (money, negligence, corruption ...). I advise it to those who want to have a panorama of the main environmental disasters. My rate is 5/5 !
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.9 out of 5 stars  14 reviews
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Helpful, needed, timely 7 Feb 2010
By James D. Morris - Published on
Bob Hernan's book is a tremendously useful summation of fifteen of the worst environmental catastrophes of our time, along with their awful human toll. Clearly and gracefully written, it is transparent and accessible and would be a valuable teaching tool.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Planetary Mayday 10 Mar 2010
By Joanna Isaak - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Robert Hernan's This Borrowed Earth is nothing if not timely. This survey of a number of the major environmental disasters of the last twenty years arrives at a time in which the global environmental situation has arguably become the major issue facing the world today. Hernan's book is a sobering and gripping narrative of a series of man-made environmental disasters, from Minimata to Chenobyl to Three Mile Island, the consequences of which were fatal to thousands of people. The record of evasions, self-excuses, and outright lying, practiced by the corporations and governments responsible for the disasters makes for disturbing reading, and a strong sense of the need for vigilance in the future. The book's subject matter is inherently dramatic, and is told in an appropriately minimalist style; the tragedies speak for themselves. A book that should receive wide readership, and a must read for anyone concerned about the state of the planet. -D. O'Connell
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars compelling stories 21 Feb 2010
By Robert Emmet Hernan - Published on
"This Borrowed Earth" is an amazing book and should be required reading in all classrooms. Described here are fifteen of the worst man-made disasters that have shaped and given urgency to the contemporary environmental movement. Each story is told with clarity and compassion. Hernan lets the facts speak for themselves but in a prose that is limpidly clear, almost hypnotic. Full of information about the causes of these disasters, the book also focuses on the human experiences around the events--often heartbreaking. But the stories of individual courage and achievement are also inspiring and stand in stark contrast to the tales of corporate ignorance and/or indifference. Each new generation should be made aware of this history; many of us born after the l970's are shockingly unfamiliar with some of these landmark crises. This is a book that will help future generations to avoid the mistakes of the past.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great AP environmental science supplement 4 Aug 2010
By Allison Mock - Published on
Excellent job of presenting the social, economic and political issues surrounding these disasters. Each story had a compelling human element to it. I liked the fact that the author stuck to the facts and didn't get wrapped up in soapbox rhetoric. This will be required reading for my APES classes.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A riveting "must-read" for all concerned about our environment 26 Feb 2010
By C. P. Garvey - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Hernan is a brilliant story teller. His stories of environmental disasters are riveting, particularly in his focus on the resulting human suffering. As each story unfolds, the author conveys complex environmental principles in direct, easily-understood language.

Hernan's stories are stark reminders of the environmental havoc that can be wrought all too easily in our highly-industrialized, ever-burgeoning world. Many of the disasters he recounts are in danger of being forgotten -- or worse, never known -- by newer generations. Kudos to the author for focusing the light of the current day on these critically-important events of the recent past -- lest we forget and such disasters begin to repeat themselves.
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