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5.0 out of 5 stars The Politicians Should Read This..., 12 Jan 2012
This review is from: The Great Extinction - What Killed The Dinosaurs And Devastated The Earth? (Hardcover)
Educational, historically informative, entertaining whilst at the same time disturbing.

The exploration of the evidence for the planitisimal (meteorite/asteroid/comet generic term - see, education immediately!) that hit planet Earth 65m years ago and wiped out a significant number of the extant species of the time - including the dinosaurs.

Allaby and Lovelock (one of 'Survival Handbook' fame [I thought I recognised his name] and the other of the Gaia hypothesis) lead the reader through the last major shock event that ultimately affected the course of evolution and shaped the world we live in today.

No scientific training necessary for understanding. The book is well written, illustrated and scary - particularly since in March 1989 a 100 metre diameter asteriod passed within twice the radius of the moon's orbit in a 'near miss', and nobody detected it until it had gone by.

These things are Nick Taleb's ultimate 'Black Swans'. Had the 1989 object hit Earth then chances are I wouldn't be writing this review now and you wouldn't be reading it.

The consequences of larger impacts are literally Earth Shaking in that they wipe out multiple entire species. Accordingly, Allaby and Lovelock close with reccomending that we allocate a small fraction of our budgets to looking out for and defending againsrt such strikes - since we are the first known species to have the abilty to obviate such & hence survive otherwise potential extermination.

Well worth a read in conjunction with Taleb's 'Black Swan' and David Raup's 'Extinction: Bad Genes or Bad Luck?'
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