Nation-States and the Global Environment: New Approaches to International Environmental History

Nation-States and the Global Environment: New Approaches to International Environmental History

by Erika Marie Bsumek
     
 

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Hardly a day passes without journalists, policymakers, academics, or scientists calling attention to the worldwide scale of the environmental crisis confronting humankind. While climate change has generated the greatest alarm in recent years, other global problems-desertification, toxic pollution, species extinctions, drought, and deforestation, to name just a

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Overview

Hardly a day passes without journalists, policymakers, academics, or scientists calling attention to the worldwide scale of the environmental crisis confronting humankind. While climate change has generated the greatest alarm in recent years, other global problems-desertification, toxic pollution, species extinctions, drought, and deforestation, to name just a few-loom close behind. The scope of the most pressing environmental problems far exceeds the capacity of individual nation-states, much less smaller political entities. To compound these problems, economic globalization, the growth of non-governmental activist groups, and the accelerating flow of information have fundamentally transformed the geopolitical landscape. Despite the new urgency of these challenges, however, they are not without historical precedent. As this book shows, nation-states have long sought agreements to manage migratory wildlife, just as they have negotiated conventions governing the exploitation of rivers and other bodies of water. Similarly, nation-states have long attempted to control resources beyond their borders, to impose their standards of proper environmental exploitation on others, and to draw on expertise developed elsewhere to cope with environmental problems at home. This collection examines this little-understood history, providing case studies and context to inform ongoing debates.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Nation-States and the Global Environment is an ambitious, important, and useful book. ... Historians and interested citizens will find much in Nation-States and the Global Environment to keep them pondering. One of its great virtues is its global reach and its regional-issue specificity, demonstrating again how environmental problems always occupy multiple spaces." —Oregon Historical Quarterly

"A commendable compilation. Suitable for use in seminars in either environmental or diplomatic history." —CHOICE

"We often make our judgments on our biological future as looming and/or glowing in accordance with our assessment of choices we made on such momentous matters in the past. I advise that we should start that assessment by reading Nation-States and the Global Environment." —Alfred W. Crosby, author of Children of the Sun: A History of Humanity's Unappeasable Appetite for Energy

"This valuable collection is the most up-to-date and wide-ranging set of essays available on modern environmental history in global context. It tackles one of the most important tensions facing the contemporary world: the cross-national nature of key environmental problems, yet the centrality of nation states to the solution of these problems. The authors provide essential historical depth to current policy discussions and public debate on environmental issues, and pioneering contributions to global and transnational history." —Ian Tyrrell, University of New South Wales

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780199755356
Publisher:
Oxford University Press, USA
Publication date:
05/02/2013
Pages:
320
Product dimensions:
9.30(w) x 6.40(h) x 0.90(d)

Meet the Author

Erika Marie Bsumek is Associate Professor of History at the University of Texas at Austin and the author of Indian-Made: Navajo Culture in the Marketplace, 1868-1940.

David Kinkela is Associate Professor of History at the State University of New York Fredonia and the author of DDT and the American Century: Global Health, Environmental Politics, and the Pesticide that Changed the World.

Mark Atwood Lawrence is Associate Professor of History at the University of Texas at Austin and the author of Assuming the Burden: Europe and the American Commitment to War in Vietnam and The Vietnam War: A Concise International History.

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