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Adventures in the Anthropocene: A Journey to the Heart of the Planet we Made

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Published by Chatto & Windus, part of Vintage Publishing

Format: Hardback


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EAN: 9780701187347
Published: 3 Jul 2014


About the book


**Winner of Royal Society Winton Prize for Science Books 2015**

'This is an underreported area of science and a truly original story. We were all humbled by Vince's commitment to this book - she quit her job and spent 800 days on the global road to gather her evidence. She has captured the issue of the day in a way that is ultimately empowering without ever being complacent.' Ian Stewart, Chair of judges, Royal Society Winton Prize for Science Books 2015

We live in epoch-making times. Literally. The changes we humans have made in recent decades have altered our world beyond anything it has experienced in its 4.5 billion-year history -- we have become a force on a par with earth-shattering asteroids and planet-cloaking volcanoes.

As a result, our planet is said to be crossing a geological boundary -- from the Holocene into the Anthropocene, or Age of Man.

Gaia Vince decided to quit her job at science journal Nature, and travel the world at the start of this new age to explore what all these changes really mean -- especially for the people living on the frontline of the planet we’ve made.

She found ordinary people solving severe crises in ingenious, effective ways. Take the retired railway worker who’s building artificial glaciers in the Himalayas, for example, or the Peruvian painting mountains white to retain snowfall. Meet the villagers in India using satellite technology to glean water; and the women farmers in Africa combining the latest genetic discoveries with ancient irrigation techniques; witness the electrified reefs in the Maldives and the man who’s making islands out of rubbish in the Caribbean.

Alongside these extraordinary -- and inspiring -- stories, Gaia looks at how humanity's changes are reshaping our living planet, transforming our relationship with the natural world, and explores how we might engineer Earth for our future.

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What the critics say

An excellent book... Vince writes with great freshness and vigour, and her stories are hard to stop reading
- Daily Telegraph

It holds a mirror up to humanity and says: look what you have done to the world, the only world you will ever have... in every sense a good book, as well as a compelling read
- Guardian

A heroic and important work with a happy ending
- Sunday Times

A masterpiece... a wondrous, remarkable, but heart-rending story
- Ecologist

A masterpiece... a wondrous, remarkable, but heart-rending story
- Ecologist

A story of optimism about how 10 billion people can in future live together and prosper... Fresh and unencumbered. Vince glides from ecology to economics, politics to philosophy, seeing it all through the people she meets
- New Scientist

A beautifully human and optimistic book filled with stories of ordinary people who simply refuse to give up
- BBC Focus

Ms Vince's focus on individuals and places helps ground the science in reality... [her] case studies are fascinating
- The Economist

A beautifully written book that raises the most profound question of our time: 'How should we live?' In the past, this has been primarily a personal question. But, as Gaia Vince amply demonstrates, what was once a personal question has become the central question for us as a species -- and the fate of nearly every species on our planet (including our own) rests on our answer.
- Ken Caldeira, Professor of Environmental Earth Systems Sciences, Stanford University

I love this book. Gaia Vince effortlessly weaves individual stories into an epic, global narrative, to present us with a positive vision of a humane, brave new world
- Alice Roberts

A fine and timely book. Gaia Vince shows us how to stay steady and cheerful despite the ever intensifying drama of the Anthropocene
- James Lovelock

Fascinating, troubling and remarkably cool-headed
- Wanderlust

Waht is the Anthropocene world really like? Science editor and journalist Gaia Vince set off to find out... Highly recommended
- Geologist

A brilliant book, full of examples of fighting back against climate change in unexpected and courageous ways
- Tim Flannery, founder of The Climate Council, Australia; Chairman of the Copenhagen Climate Council

A literal walk through the far reaches of our planet, a biosphere now governed as much by human activity as by the forces of nature. We should take heed of these hard won stories by Gaia Vince, and wise up
- David Buckland, International Director, Cape Farewell

Makes it easier to look at the Earth’s future without pessimism, and is a delight to read for the science alone
- Cotsworld Life

This is a transformative book and will inspire all of its readers to think more carefully about the way we interact with the environment
- Australian Geologist

A world tour of how our transformation of the planet is playing out on the ground
- Resurgence & Ecologist

About the Author

Gaia Vince is a journalist and broadcaster specialising in science and the environment. She has been the front editor of the journal Nature Climate Change, the news editor of Nature and online editor of New Scientist. Her book Adventures in the Anthropocene: A Journey to the Heart of the Planet we Made won the 2015 Royal Society Winton Prize for Science Books. Her work has appeared in the Guardian, The Times, Science, Scientific American, Australian Geographic and the Australian. She has a regular column, Smart Planet, on BBC Online, and devises and presents programmes about the Anthropocene for BBC radio. She blogs at WanderingGaia.com and tweets at @WanderingGaia.

Gaia Vince

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