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Ecology: A Pocket Guide

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Three out of four Americans now think of themselves as environmentalists. Millions of children are busy with projects to save the Earth. But we all would be more effective at resolving today's pressing environmental issues if we had a clearer understanding of the ecological principles behind them. With this lively guide to the essentials of ecology, Ernest Callenbach provides a pocket-sized introduction to the wonderful complexity of life on Earth—and our part in it.

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Overview

Three out of four Americans now think of themselves as environmentalists. Millions of children are busy with projects to save the Earth. But we all would be more effective at resolving today's pressing environmental issues if we had a clearer understanding of the ecological principles behind them. With this lively guide to the essentials of ecology, Ernest Callenbach provides a pocket-sized introduction to the wonderful complexity of life on Earth—and our part in it.

Callenbach uses everyday, nontechnical language to explain sixty basic ecological concepts. These brief, information-packed entries are arranged alphabetically and amply cross-referenced. Thus the reader can move freely around a dynamic network of ideas, gaining easy access to the new thinking that scientists, environmentalists, politicians, government officials, business people, and concerned citizens everywhere are using to seek a sustainable future for humanity.

As timely as today's news, Ecology includes current findings on the microscopic beings that first made plant and animal life possible and now regulate global temperature and oxygen levels—a dramatic new story of the intricate interconnections of all life on Earth. Finally we have a book that equips us to take informed personal and political action with the ecological wisdom needed for the twenty-first century.

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Editorial Reviews

Wildlife Activist
This great little book...will equip any concerned citizen of the planet with the basic knowledge of all things ecological....Every household should have one!
Tikkun Magazine
Callenbach's book gives us the basics to participate intelligently in the current debates about how to save the planet.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780520214637
  • Publisher: University of California Press
  • Publication date: 11/1/1998
  • Edition description: POCKET
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 192
  • Product dimensions: 4.50 (w) x 7.25 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Ernest Callenbach is the author of Bring Back the Buffalo! (1996), Ecotopia Emerging (1981), and Ecotopia (1975). He lives in the Bay Area.

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Table of Contents

Ecology: Planetary to Microscopic Scales (drawings)

Air 3

Algae 8

Bacteria 8

Biodiversity 13

Bioregion 15

Biosphere/Ecosphere 18

Biotechnology 18

Carbon 20

Carrying Capacity 23

Community 25

Conservation 27

Cycles 29

Decomposition 31

Deforestation/Desertification 33

Ecology 34

Ecosystem 39

Energy 41

Environment 48

Environmental Justice 49

Evolution 51

Extinction 55

Fire 58

Food Webs 61

Fungi 63

Gaia 66

Global Warming 68

Growth 76

Habitat 78

Impacts 80

Interdependence 83

Kingdoms 85

Land Use 87

Microbes 88

Migration 90

Niche 94

Nitrogen 95

Organic 98

Phosphorus 99

Photosynthesis 100

Pollution 102

Population 105

Predation 107

Protists 109

Quarantine 110

Restoration 112

Sex 117

Smell 121

Soil 123

Species 126

Succession 127

Sulfur 129

Sustainability 130

Symbiosis 132

Taxonomy 134

Time 135

Tourism 137

Toxics 138

Urban Ecology 139

Values 145

Viruses 149

Water 151

Wilderness/Wildness 154

Xeriscape 156

Yield 157

Zoos 159

A Postscript: The Power of Words 163

Recommended Reading 167

Acknowledgments 169

Index 171

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