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NewtonsPrincipia

Photograph © Andrew Dunn, 5 November 2004. via Wikimedia Commons. (Note: I'm not comparing my word to Newton's -- just liked the photo!)


2011

J.A. Newman, M. AnandH.A.L. HenryS. Hunt and Z. Gedalof Climate Change Biology. Publisher: CABI.  2011.  This book was published in April 2011. Climate change has moved from a contested phenomenon to the top of the agenda at global summits.Climate Change Biologyis the first major textbook to address the critical issue of how climate change may affect life on the planet, and particularly its impact on human populations. Presented in three parts, the first deals extensively with the physical evidence of climate change and various modelling efforts to predict its future. Biological responses are then addressed from the individual's physiology to populations and ecosystems, and further to considering adaptation and evolution. The final section examines the specific impact climate change may have on natural resources, particularly as these relate to human livelihood. The aim of this book is to provide an introduction to climate change biology and give a synthesis of progress to date.  It is intended for upper level undergraduates and beginning graduate students.  

2016

J.A. Newman, G. Varner and S. Linquist.  Defending Conservation: Environmental Ethics for Environmentalists.  Publisher: Cambridge University Press.  Due Date: May 2016.  

Imagine that you are an environmentalist who believes passionately that the United States should not drill for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.  Imagine that you want to convince the Governor of Alaska that doing so would be wrong, then you will need good arguments to do so.  Good arguments need to be logically consistent, coherent, and substantive.  There is no denying the passionate feelings of environmentalists for their causes, but the arguments offered in support of their positions are often weak. Sometimes they lack empirical substance – they are not supported by good biological science – and other times they are philosophically naive. Arguments about the environment and how humans ought to treat the environment have been going on for decades within the academic discipline of environmental ethics.  All the opening gambits in these arguments have been thought of before, and all these gambits have standard responses.  Environmentalists seem to rely on these well-worn opening gambits but are seemingly unaware of the standard counter arguments.  As a result their arguments are far less effective than they could be, and do little to advance the quality of discussion.  In this book, our goal will be to critically examine the arguments in favor of conserving biodiversity.  We won’t be telling environmentalists what to think, but we will challenge them to improve their arguments by exposing them to the suite of standard gambits and responses.  By carefully explaining where the main objections lie with regard to their chosen views, we hope that they will be better able to engage in public debate and to rationally inform public policy.

Summerlee Science Complex, Room 1321, tel. +1 519 824 4120 ext. 56102