America's Environmental Report Card, second edition
Are We Making the Grade?
384 pp., 6 x 9 in, 47 figures, 35 tables
- Published: February 25, 2011
- Publisher: The MIT Press
An accessible overview of the most important environmental issues facing the United States, with new and updated material.
Americans are concerned about the state of the environment, and yet polls show that many have lost faith in both scientists' and politicians' ability to solve environmental problems. In America's Environmental Report Card, Harvey Blatt sorts through the deluge of conflicting information about the environment and offers an accessible overview of the environmental issues that are most important to Americans today.
Blatt has thoroughly updated this second edition, revising and adding new material. He looks at water supplies and new concerns about water purity; the dangers of floods (increased by widespread logging and abetted by glacial melting); infrastructure problems (in a new chapter devoted entirely to this subject); the leaching of garbage buried in landfills; soil, contaminated crops, and organic food; fossil fuels; alternative energy sources (in another new chapter); controversies over nuclear energy; the increasing pace of climate change; and air pollution. Along the way, he outlines ways to deal with these problems—workable and reasonable solutions that map the course to a sustainable future. America can lead the way to a better environment, Blatt argues. We are the richest nation in the world, and we can afford it—in fact, we can't afford not to.
This book serves as an indictment of inaction on the part of citizens and policymakers, a much-needed critique of the consumption-based economic drivers of environmental degradation, and a call to action for all Americans. Blatt's revision of the first edition is a welcome and valuable contribution to the field.
James W. Jordan, Department of Environmental Studies, Antioch University New England