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New Agriculturist: Book reviews - He knew he was right - the irrepressible life of James Lovelock and Gaia
 
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He knew he was right - the irrepressible life of James Lovelock and Gaia

he knew he was right

By John Gribbin and Mary Gribbin
Published by Allen Lane
Website: www.penguin.co.uk
2009, 240pp, ISBN 978-1-846-14016-7(Hb), £20

Two groups of people could benefit from reading this biography of James Lovelock, one of the outstanding scientists of the 20th century. There are those who have read his writing on Gaia and the future prospects for mankind in the face of global warming and climate change, and wish to know more about the man and how he came to form his theory. Then there are those who have little or no knowledge of Gaia and may even be environmental sceptics: this book will introduce them to the man, to Gaia and provide a comprehensive but readable background to the indisputable trends that confront us.

John and Mary Gribbin, acclaimed science writers, have provided another "wake-up call" for action to mitigate the environmental changes already evident worldwide: melting sea ice, vanishing glaciers, increasing violence and frequency of extreme weather events, species disappearing at an unprecedented rate. They also quote recent research, indicating the beneficial role played by the Amazon rainforest in rainfall generation and agricultural productivity worldwide and how, if forest clearance continues, the yield of the US corn belt would likely fall by 20 per cent.

Date published: July 2009

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