Contents: Preface. 1. Biodiversity. 2. Living with diversity. 3. Saving the planet: Imperialism in Green Garb? 4. Population and the environment: The Global Challenge. 5. Ecosystems, our unknown protectors. 6. Climate change and human health. 7. Population growth and climate change. 8. Economics and sustainable development. 9. Urbanization and the environment. 10. Sustainable cities. 11. Fresh water and the environment. 12. Forests. 13. Towards healthy cities. 14. Global warming: Worrisome Signs. 15. Money alone is not enough: Technology Transfer and Environmental Protection. 16. Tourism and the environment. 17. Energy and sustainability. 18. Cities residents to the rescue. 19. Children's health and the environment. 20. Ecotourism or ecocide? 21. Sustainable tourism development. 22. Economics and environment. 23. Population growth and energy. 24. Population growth and urbanization. 25. Population growth and waste. 26. Using economics to advantage. 27. Water: Will be there Enough? 28. Solutions for a water-short world. 29. Living with leviathan. 30. An agenda for change. 31. Sustainable tourism and the environment. 32. Big-dam construction is on the rise. 33. Population growth and fresh water. 34. Population growth and natural recreation areas. 35. Development of sericulture. 36. The do's and don'ts of risk reduction. 37. Consuming the future. 38. Crisis prevention: Can Better Development Planning Lessen the Toll of Civil Emergencies and Natural Disasters? 39. Crisis and new orientation of development policy. 40. Aid effectiveness as a multi-level process. 41. The dematerialisation of the world economy. 42. What's driving migration. 43. Not yet fossil fuel. Bibliography. Index.
"As human population has surged this century, the population of numerous other species have tumbled, many to the point of extinction. Indeed, we live amid the greatest extinction of plant and animal life since the dinosaurs disappeared some 65 million years ago, which species losses at 100 to 1,000 times the natural rate. But humans are not just witnesses to a rare historic event, we are actually its cause. The leading sources of today's species loss, habitat alteration, invasions by exotic species, pollution, and overhunting are all a function of human activities.
Human activities have pushed the percentage of mammals, amphibians, land fish that are in "immediate danger" of extinction into double digits. The principal cause of species extinction is habitat loss-the result of encroachment by humans for settlements, for agriculture, or to claim resources such as timber. A particularly productive but vulnerable habitat is found in coastal areas, home to 60 per cent of the world's population. Coastal wetlands nurture two thirds of all commercially caught fish, for example. And coral reefs have the second highest concentration of biodiversity in the world, after tropical rainforest. But human encroachment and pollution are degrading these areas: roughly half of the world's salt marshes and mangrove swamps have been eliminated or radically altered, and two thirds of the world's coral reefs have been degraded, 10 per cent of them "beyond recognition". (jacket)