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Book description

The Anthropocene, a term launched into public debate by Nobel Prize winner Paul Crutzen, has been used informally to describe the time period during which human actions have had a drastic effect on the Earth and its ecosystems. This book presents evidence for defining the Anthropocene as a geological epoch, written by the high-profile international team analysing its potential addition to the geological time scale. The evidence ranges from chemical signals arising from pollution, to landscape changes associated with urbanisation, and biological changes associated with species invasion and extinctions. Global environmental change is placed within the context of planetary processes and deep geological time, allowing the reader to appreciate the scale of human-driven change and compare the global transition taking place today with major transitions in Earth history. This is an authoritative review of the Anthropocene for graduate students and academic researchers across scientific, social science and humanities disciplines.


'A very timely account of the progress and problems in defining the Anthropocene from its geological signature. The authors have brought together a plethora of scattered evidence to clarify where the science is now, and how it will impact on so many fields, from atmospheric and ocean chemistry to the legal system. This book will be hard to beat as a summary of the impact of humankind on the permanent record that will be entombed in the rocks of the future.'

Richard Fortey, FRS - Natural History Museum

'Geologists' notion of the Anthropocene is one of the most powerful frames through which we can redefine humanity's changing relationship with the planet, and this hugely impressive book provides the definitive scientific account.'

Iain Stewart - BBC TV presenter, University of Plymouth

'… this book constitutes evidence of the epistemological development of the Anthropocene, from simple conjecture to a body of hypotheses merged into an interdisciplinary scientific theory.'

Eugenio Luciano Source: Global Environment

‘… this book is the most definitive and up-to-date reference work for anyone working on or interested in the geological case for the Anthropocene.’

Leon Vlieger Source: Natural History Book Service

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