623 pages, 39 figures24 maps10 tables
In a narrative which merges the personal with the professional, the author of this text, Timothy P. Duane - who grew up in the area - documents the impact of rapid population growth on the culture, economy, and ecology of the Sierra Nevada since the late 1960s. He also recommends policies for mitigating the negative effects of future population growth in this spectacular but threatened region, as well as throughout the rural west. In the late-20th century, the primary social and economic values of the Sierra Nevada landscape are in the amenities and ecological services provided by its wildlands and functioning ecosystems. Duane shows how further unfettered population growth threatens the very values which have made the Sierra Nevada a desirable place to live and work. A new approach to land use planning, resource management, and local economic development - one that recognizes the emerging values of the landscape - is necessary in order to achieve sustainable development, Duane claims. He shows how such an approach must explicitly recognize the importance of values and the application of an environmental land ethic to future development in the area.
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Timothy P. Duane is Associate Professor of Environmental Studies at the University of California, Santa Cruz.