Synopses & Reviews
In The Revenge of Gaia, bestselling author James Lovelock- father of climate studies and originator of the influential Gaia theory which views the entire earth as a living meta-organism-provides a definitive look at our imminent global crisis. In this disturbing new book, Lovelock guides us toward a hard reality: soon, we may not be able to alter the oncoming climate crisis. Lovelocks influential Gaia theory, one of the building blocks of modern climate science, conceives of the Earth, including the atmosphere, oceans, biosphere and upper layers of rock, as a single living super-organism, regulating its internal environment much as an animal regulates its body temperature and chemical balance. But now, says Lovelock, that organism is sick. It is running a fever born of the combination of a sun whose intensity is slowly growing over millions of years, and an atmosphere whose greenhouse gases have recently spiked due to human activity. Earth will adjust to these stresses, but on time scales measured in the hundreds of millennia. It is already too late, Lovelock says, to prevent the global climate from flipping” into an entirely new equilibrium state that will leave the tropics uninhabitable, and force migration to the poles. The Revenge of Gaia explains the stress the planetary system is under and how humans are contributing to it, what the consequences will be, and what humanity must do to rescue itself.
"The end is all but nigh for Mother Earth's inhabitants unless drastic measures are soon taken: that's the rueful prognostication delivered by Lovelock (Gaia: A New Look at Life on Earth), intuitive originator of the theory that the world is a self-regulating system that, over the eons, has been able to sustain an equilibrium between hot and cold so as to support life. Now, propelled by global warming, Lovelock says, a tipping point has almost been reached beyond which the Earth will not recover sufficiently to sustain human life comfortably. Lovelock dismisses biomass fuels, wind farms, solar energy and fuel cell innovations as technologies unlikely to mitigate greenhouse gases in time to save the planet. Instead he sees nuclear energy as the only energy source that can meet our needs in time to prevent catastrophe. Chernobyl was a calamity, he notes, but nuclear power's danger is 'insignificant compared with the real threat of intolerable and lethal heatwaves' and rising sea levels that could 'threaten every coastal city of the world.' Lovelock's pro-nuke enthusiasm, unexpected from one of the mid-20th century's most ardent environmental thinkers, is the well-reasoned core of this urgent call for braking at the brink of global catastrophe." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
About the Author
James Lovelock is the originator of Gaia Theory, on which he has written several books. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1974. He has received honorary Doctorates in Science from seven universities in England, Sweden, and the United States. He was made a C.B.E. in 1990, and in 2003 a Companion of Honour by Her Majesty the Queen. He lives in Cornwall, Britain.