This Borrowed Earth: Lessons from the Fifteen Worst Environmental Disasters Around the World

( 5 )

Overview

Over the last century mankind has irrevocably damaged the environment through the unscrupulous greed of big business and our own willful ignorance. Here are the strikingly poignant accounts of disasters whose names live in infamy: Chernobyl, Bhopal, Exxon Valdez, Three Mile Island, Love Canal, Minamata and others. And with these, the extraordinary and inspirational stories of the countless men and women who fought bravely to protect the communities and environments at risk.

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This Borrowed Earth: Lessons from the Fifteen Worst Environmental Disasters around the World

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Overview

Over the last century mankind has irrevocably damaged the environment through the unscrupulous greed of big business and our own willful ignorance. Here are the strikingly poignant accounts of disasters whose names live in infamy: Chernobyl, Bhopal, Exxon Valdez, Three Mile Island, Love Canal, Minamata and others. And with these, the extraordinary and inspirational stories of the countless men and women who fought bravely to protect the communities and environments at risk.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“Robert Hernan provides a deep service … May this book give heart and courage to many more such great souls, for there are assuredly many more such fights to come.”—from the foreword by Bill McKibben

“A wake-up call to all concerned citizens of this earth.”—from the preface by Graham Nash

"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

“Lets the facts and the victims speak for themselves. Again and again, we see polluters hiding or denying information, threatening those impacted by pollution, and putting profits before people. Hernan’s stories show that each of these disasters were avoidable; we can only hope that by reading of them we all learn and avoid future ones.”—Peter Lehner, Executive Director, Natural Resources Defense Council

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780230619838
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publication date: 2/2/2010
  • Series: MacSci Series
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 100,987
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.68 (d)

Meet the Author

Robert Emmet Hernan is a former senior counsel for the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation and Assistant Attorney General for New York State. He was a trial lawyer for New York State in the infamous Love Canal Case. He lives in New York City.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vii

Foreword Bill McKibben ix

Preface Graham Nash xi

Introduction 1

Minamata, Japan, 1950s 9

London, England, 1952 31

Windscale, England, 1957 39

Seveso, Italy, 1976 45

Love Canal, New York, 1978 61

Three Mile Island, Pennsylvania, 1979 81

Times Beach, Missouri, 1982 91

Bhopal, India, 1984 101

Chernobyl, Ukraine, 1986 109

Rhine River, Switzerland, 1986 129

Prince William Sound, Alaska, 1989 137

Oil Spills and Fires of Kuwait, 1991 155

Dassen and Robben Islands, South Africa, 2000 163

Brazilian Rainforest 171

Global Climate Change 179

List of Some Environmental Organizations 189

Notes 193

Sources 197

Index 231

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 5 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews
  • Posted February 24, 2010

    Great book!

    This is a fantastic book and a must read for students, environmentalists, elected officials, and anyone who cares to learn from the mistakes of the past. Powerfully written and meticulously researched, Mr. Hernan writes with authority, drawing from his career as a prosecutor on the front lines of the fight against pollution.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 21, 2010

    compelling stories

    "This Borrowed Earth" is an amazing book, and should be required reading in every classroom. Described here are fifteen of the worst man-mand 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 so limpidly clear as to be 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 1970's are shockingly unfamiliar with these landmark crises. This is a book that will help future generations avoid the mistakes of the past.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 13, 2012

    No stars! Absolutly horrid!

    I would give this book a zero! The ----- administration is crap! Monkeys could do better! At least bush didn't cause more dept to this country than all the other presidents combined! Unlike another president that i could name! I am done with all this greeny, libral, obama loving, hippi junk! I am through with it!

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 7, 2010

    Compelling and Persuasive

    Clearly and persuasively rendered, with transparent and graceful style, Hernan's book is beyond unsettling as an account of current corporate and governmental regard for the public health and safety in the field of environmental regulation. Must read for those in the field or interested in it. Also a powerful teaching tool.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews

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