AbstractA continuous search for comforts, conveniences, and novel objects has brought humanity to a state where a continuation of this process endangers the welfare, perhaps even survival of humanity. The present lifestyle of profligate consumption, aided by developments in science and technology, imposes a heavy burden on the planetary resources and harms the ecosystem that supports us. Considering Earth to be a limitless source of useful materials and an infinite sink of waste products is endangering our future by depleting natural resources and degrading the environment. Many such developments have already begun to adversely affect the ecosystem and are multiplying rapidly. The book discusses these issues in a comprehensive manner, including climate change and its deleterious consequences, degradation and pollution of land, air, and seas, changing weather patterns, rising sea levels, forest fires, expanding deserts, and shortage of freshwater in many parts of the world. A lack of concern for sustainability while searching for immediate benefits is degrading the ecosystem. We may pass on the planet to the younger generations with more pollution, dangerous weather patterns, and fewer endowments that may seriously limit their lives. Each chapter of the book discusses one aspect of the existential problems facing humanity and ends with a section entitled 'The Way Forward' that makes suggestions for actions to be taken expeditiously to stop the progression of dangerous events.
REVIEWS and WORDS OF PRAISE
With Enlightened Environmentalism Dr. Saxena has provided an important companion to his book The Vegetarian Imperative. Focused on the contributors to our environmentally degraded planet, Saxena expands his concerns about animal-based nutrition to include many aspects that others have covered, but some that are not widely discussed. His work on wealth concentration and overpopulation provide a wider than normal base to the discussion. While many delineate the same dire circumstances in which we find ourselves, Dr. Saxena provides a way forward at the end of each chapter, giving us the benefit of his wisdom and experience.
--Joan Sabate, MD, PhD, Professor of Nutrition and Epidemiology, Director, Center for Nutrition, Lifestyle, and Disease Prevention, Loma Linda University, School of Public Health
About the AuthorAnand Saxena worked as a scientist at the Brookhaven National Laboratory for more than three decades. His research work included studies of biological systems and their interactions. For many years, he has been involved in studies of the environment and sustainability. His book The Vegetarian Imperative was published by the Johns Hopkins University Press in 2011.
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