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International experts provide a comprehensive picture of the principles, concepts and methods that are applicable to problems originating from the interaction between the living/non-living environment and mankind. Both the analysis of such problems and the way solutions to environmental problems may work in specific societal contexts are addressed. Disciplinary approaches are discussed but there is a focus on multi- and interdisciplinary methods. A large number of practical examples and case studies are presented. There is special emphasis on modelling and integrated assessment.
This book is different because it stresses the societal, cultural and historical dimensions of environmental problems. The main objective is to improve the ability to analyse and conceptualise environmental problems in context and to make readers aware of the value and scope of different methods. Ideal as a course text for students, this book will also be of interest to researchers and consultants in the environmental sciences.
Preface.-Part 1. Environmental sciences, sustainability, and quality. Biogeochemical cycles. Reconstructing environmental changes over the last 3 million years. Environmental history: object of study and methodology. Human environmental history since the origin of agriculture. Recent developments and trends.-Part 2. General Principles. Specific principles. Social science and environmental behaviour. The Natural Environment. Analytical tools for the environment-economy interaction. Analysis of physical interactions between the economy and the environment. Environmental policy instruments. Environmental institutions and learning: perspectives from the policy sciences. Technology for Environmental Problems. Integration. Environmental modelling. An illustration of the LCA technique. Integrated assessment.-Part 3. Environmental policies in their cultural and historical contexts. National policy styles and waste management in the Netherlands and Bavaria. Land use in Zimbabwe and neighbouring southern African countries. Climate change policy of Germany, UK and USA. Technical progress, finite resources and intergenerational justice. Sustainability is an objective value. A rejoinder to Wilfred Beckerman and Herman Daly. Transitions to sustainability as societal innovations. Agriculture and food problems. Tracing the sustainable development of nations with integrated indicators.-Index.
From the reviews: "Principles of Environmental Sciences is a departure from the typical environmental sciences book because it builds on the foundation of a good environmental sciences course ! . Editors Boersema and Reijnders address several global issues by defining the problem, reviewing methodologies for analysis, and exploring solutions and options. ! This excellent work provides material ! to an environmental sciences course for majors at the upper-undergraduate or graduate level. Summing Up: Highly recommended. Academic audiences, upper-division undergraduates and above." (D. Ostergren, Choice, Vol. 46 (11), 2009)