Publication Date: 2006-08-01
Environment: An Illustrated Guide to Science is one of eight volumes of Facts On File's new ""Science Visual Resources"" set. Containing seven sections, a comprehensive glossary, a Web site guide, and an index, Biology is an ideal learning tool for students and teachers of science. Full-colour diagrams, graphs, charts, and maps on every page illustrate the essential elements of the subject, while parallel text provides key definitions and step-by-step explanations. The seven sections include: ""People Factor"" - describes one of the most important elements in any consideration of the environment - the human population of Earth. There are detailed descriptions of world population distribution, demographics, fertility, and death rates. Major environment-influencing factors such as vehicle ownership, urbanization, and the demand for firewood are examined. ""Food and Water"" - examines the two most basic commodities: trends in the availability of fresh water and global production figures for all kinds of food. Hazards threatening the sustainability of food production and the provision of fresh water are also described. ""Land Degradation"" - is concerned with the processes that are reducing the capacity of the land to both support biodiversity and produce food for the human population. Among these processes are deforestation, erosion, and desertification. ""Land and Sea Pollution"" - is an overview of the processes that introduce pollutants to the marine and terrestrial environments, compromising their ability to support life. The production of energy, the generation and disposal of industrial and domestic waste, bioaccumulation, sewage disposal, and nuclear waste disposal are all discussed. ""Air Pollution"" - considers the processes that introduce pollutants to the atmosphere and the consequences of that pollution. Greenhouse gases and their influence on global warming, acid rain, and the threat to the ozone layer are the major topics in this section. ""Nature Under Threat"" - looks at the growing threat to global biodiversity posed by human population growth combined with unsustainable patterns of consumption; increasing production of waste and pollutants; urban development; international conflict; and continuing inequalities in the distribution of wealth and resources. ""Environmental Disasters"" - focuses on some catastrophic cases of pollution, particularly those relating to the uncontrolled release of oil, chemicals, and radioactive material into the environment.