OUR ENDANGERED EARTH: What We Can Do to Save It by John Langone

OUR ENDANGERED EARTH: What We Can Do to Save It

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A sobering attempt to present a more ""balanced"" view of the dangers to life on Earth than environmentalists' accounts: Langone recognizes the seriousness of problems but presents basically industrial-oriented perspectives and partial solutions. His central argument is that ""economic needs and a country's best interests must be balanced with the need to protect the environment."" He covers most of the big issues: chemicals, noise, air and water pollution, solid waste, nuclear waste, heat pollution, deforestation, threatened wildlife, poverty and overpopulation, energy. In most cases he fairly represents the conflict between economic interests and environmental protection (aside from a few red herrings like environmentalist ""violence""). But the problem here is lack of vision: the suggested solutions derive from the policies that got us where we are, and, given the magnitude of the problems, most of them seem like grasping at straws; few of Langone's proposals involve people living differently in the future. He does recognize vital concepts like the ""web of life"" that makes a forest more than the sum of its parts; reflecting on these may lead readers to come up with more imaginative and effective solutions. The ""Opposing Viewpoints"" series presents the debates better, but this does give an overall view in digestible form. Just be sure to provide more stimulating viewpoints for those who want to know more. Detailed source notes; glossary; index.

Pub Date: Jan. 1st, 1992
Page count: 197pp
Publisher: "Little, Brown"