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Global Deforestation

  • A comprehensive yet concise reference on deforestation for both scientists and policymakers working in this very broad and interdisciplinary research area
  • Reviews the rich body of literature on deforestation and synthesizes information across disciplines, allowing readers to learn about deforestation on an interdisciplinary level without having to consult multiple texts and journal articles
  • Bridges the physical and biological sciences with the social sciences by examining economic impacts and socioeconomic drivers of deforestation

By: Christiane Runyan(Author), Paolo D'Odorico(Author)

253 pages, 11 plates with colour photos and colour illustrations; 68 b/w illustrations, tables

Cambridge University Press

Hardback | Jul 2016 | #225769 | ISBN-13: 9781107135260
Availability: In stock
NHBS Price: £49.99 $64/€54 approx

About this book

Global Deforestation provides a concise but comprehensive examination of the variety of ways in which deforestation modifies environmental processes, as well as the societal implications of these changes. Global Deforestation stresses how forest ecosystems may be prone to nearly irreversible degradation. To prevent the loss of important biophysical and socioeconomic functions, forests need to be adequately managed and protected against the increasing demand for agricultural land and forest resources. Global Deforestation describes the spatial extent of forests, and provides an understanding of the past and present drivers of deforestation. It presents a theoretical background to understand the impacts of deforestation on biodiversity, hydrological functioning, biogeochemical cycling, and climate. It bridges the physical and biological sciences with the social sciences by examining economic impacts and socioeconomic drivers of deforestation. Global Deforestation will appeal to advanced students, researchers and policymakers in environmental science, ecology, forestry, hydrology, plant science, ecohydrology, and environmental economics.

Advance praise:

"A comprehensive and brilliant presentation which intertwines hydrology, ecology, soil science, and policy considerations. Full of new insights and ideas which will inspire students and researchers of many disciplines [...] a truly outstanding book!"
– Ignacio Rodríguez-Iturbe, Princeton University, New Jersey

"[...] an excellent synthesis of use to a wide-ranging, integrated research community addressing the social-environmental dynamics of forest systems and their change, and of importance for those students seeking to enter this community, be they from the natural or social sciences."
– Billie Turner II, Arizona State University

"[...] a state-of-the-art review of the theory, methods, results, and societal significance of forest science."
– Eric A. Davidson, University of Maryland

"This book blends concepts and quantitative tools critical to explore the consequences of deforestation and afforestation on climate and society in a unique style accessible to both students and practitioners."
– Gabriel G. Katul, Duke University, North Carolina

"In Global Deforestation Runyan and D'Odorico bring together in a single analysis, better than anyone else to date, a consideration of deforestation's ecological impacts and human drivers. Their linked discussions of these processes provide the reader with an unparalleled appreciation of the importance of forest losses for our future."
– Thomas K. Rudel, Rutgers University, New Jersey



1. Introduction: patterns and drivers of deforestation
2. Hydrological and climactic impacts of deforestation
3. Biogeochemical impacts of deforestation
4. Irreversibility of deforestation
5. Economic impacts and drivers of deforestation
6. Synthesis and future impacts of deforestation


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Christiane Runyan is a lecturer in Hydrology and Water Resources in the Advanced Academic Program of the Zanvyl Krieger School of Arts and Sciences at The Johns Hopkins University. Her research examines how deforestation affects the dynamics of hydrological and biogeochemical processes, and includes modeling the control that vegetation has on the soil's physical and biogeochemical conditions.

Paolo D'Odorico is Ernest H. Ern Professor of Environmental Sciences at the University of Virginia. His research focuses on the role of hydrological processes in the functioning of terrestrial ecosystems and societies. He was awarded the Sustainability Science Award from the Ecological Society of America in 2009, and he was made a Fellow of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation in 2011. He coedited Dryland Ecohydrology (2006) and coauthored Noise-Induced Phenomena in the Environmental Sciences (Cambridge, 2011) and Elements of Physical Hydrology, 2nd edition (2014).

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