November 2007

This is the conclusion to a review in Nature by Chris Thomas (York) of a new book by paleontologist Michael Novacek, Terra, about the possibility of a new, human-driven, mass extinction event:

“The geological perspective of  Terra is bizarrely reassuring. Humans will presumably be gone within a few million years, perhaps sooner. If the past that Novacek describes is a guide to the future, global ecosystem processes will be restored some tens of thousands to a million years after our demise, and new forms of life over the ensuing millions of years will exploit the denuded planet we leave behind. Thirty million years on, things will be back to normal, albeit a very different ‘normal’ from before. It is good to be optimistic. The problem is living here in the meantime.”

Buy Terra at Amazon (other booksellers are available).


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Filed under Books, Extinction

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