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Encyclopedia of Environmental Change

Encyclopedia of Environmental Change
Three Volume Set

Three Volume Set
Edited by:

December 2013 | 1 496 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd

Accessibly written by a team of international authors, the Encyclopedia of Environmental Change provides a gateway to the complex facts, concepts, techniques, methodology and philosophy of environmental change.  This three-volume set illustrates and examines topics within this dynamic and rapidly changing interdisciplinary field.  The encyclopedia includes all of the following aspects of environmental change:

  • Diverse evidence of environmental change, including climate change and changes on land and in the oceans
  • Underlying natural and anthropogenic causes and mechanisms
  • Wide-ranging local, regional and global impacts from the polar regions to the tropics
  • Responses of geo-ecosystems and human-environmental systems in the face of past, present and future environmental change
  • Approaches, methodologies and techniques used for reconstructing, dating, monitoring, modelling, projecting and predicting change
  • Social, economic and political dimensions of environmental issues, environmental conservation and management and environmental policy


Over 4,000 entries explore the following key themes and more:

  • Conservation
  • Demographic change
  • Environmental management
  • Environmental policy
  • Environmental security
  • Food security
  • Glaciation
  • Green Revolution
  • Human impact on environment
  • Industrialization
  • Landuse change
  • Military impacts on environment
  • Mining and mining impacts
  • Nuclear energy
  • Pollution
  • Renewable resources
  • Solar energy
  • Sustainability
  • Tourism
  • Trade
  • Water resources
  • Water security
  • Wildlife conservation

The comprehensive coverage of terminology includes layers of entries ranging from one-line definitions to short essays, making this an invaluable companion for any student of physical geography, environmental geography or environmental sciences.

In this day of instant information via the Internet, one can legitimately ask the question as to whether the concept of an encyclopedia is outdated. I would on the contrary argue that a volume as complete as the Encyclopedia of Environmental Change has a very legitimate raison d’être in today’s world. The range of topics included in the Encyclopedia edited by John A. Matthews, from the past to the future, from the physical to the social and economic spheres, enables a comprehensive overview of topics that are often inter-related in subtle and complex ways; it is through these linkages that an encyclopedia takes on its full meaning. I am certain that the Encyclopedia of Environmental Change will be of interest to both the research community and a wider public, often keen to know more about the evolving environments of today and tomorrow.

Martin Beniston
University of Geneva
Martin Beniston

The editors are to be congratulated on delivering this comprehensive reference guide to environmental change. The scope and content are truly impressive. This Encyclopedia will serve students and practitioners in the field of environmental change very well for many years to come.

Chris Cocklin
James Cook University, Australia
Chris Cocklin

Environmental change is an important and timely subject that has been increasingly studied in colleges. This is a unique and comprehensive compilation of knowledge covering almost every topics related to environmental change. This encyclopedia covers not only facts and concepts of environmental change but also methodology and techniques that are used to study environmental change. Its uniqueness is that it spans disciplines from natural sciences, including ecology and climatology, to social sciences, including economic, political and management aspects. It covers spatial and temporal scales, from local to global and from past to future.

Zicheng Yu
Lehigh University

This Encyclopedia is an authoritative and indispensable reference work for all of us who are interested in the rapidly evolving field of Environmental Change.  It serves as a reliable state-of-the-art guide for scientists, educators, students and professionals alike. I recommend it as an excellent and comprehensive compendium for anyone working in environmental science as it covers the entire range of this ever-changing field from the most up-to-date perspective.

Mathias Vuille
University at Albany, SUNY

Environmental change has become an acute global challenge. We are now witnessing the most profound human impact the planet has ever experienced, and the issue attracts ever increasing student, researcher, and media attention. Until now, it was difficult to find one resource with a broad coverage of this diverse interdisciplinary topic. The Encyclopedia of Environmental Change is a very welcome set of volumes which for the first time provides a broad base of perspectives including techniques for recording environmental change, the basic  natural science behind it, as well as the impact by and on human communities in the past and present. These volumes are an essential resource for instructors, students and researchers.

Arlene Rosen
University of Texas at Austin

“Accessibly written by a team of international authors, the Encyclopedia of Environmental Change provides a gateway to the complex facts, concepts, techniques, methodology and philosophy of environmental change.”

Sir Read A Lot

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ISBN: 9781446247112

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