Paradise for Sale: A Parable of Nature by Carl N. McDaniel,John M. Gowdy

By Carl N. McDaniel,John M. Gowdy

the awful heritage of Nauru Island, a small speck within the Pacific Ocean midway among Hawaii and Australia, represents a bigger tale of environmental degradation and financial disorder. For greater than 2,000 years conventional Nauruans, remoted from the remainder of the realm, lived in social and ecological balance. yet in 1900 the invention of phosphate, an absolute requirement for agriculture, catapulted Nauru into the area industry. Colonial imperialists who occupied Nauru and mined it for its profitable phosphate assets devastated the island, which perpetually replaced its local humans. In 1968 Nauruans regained rule in their island and instantly confronted a conundrum: to pursue a sustainable destiny that will shield their really helpful ordinary resources—the organic and actual integrity in their island—or to mine and promote the remainder forty-year provide of phosphate and within the procedure make so much in their domestic dead. They did the latter.

In an enthralling and relocating type, the authors describe how the island grew to become one of many richest international locations on the planet and the way its electorate bought the entire ills of contemporary existence: weight problems, diabetes, middle ailment, high blood pressure. whilst, Nauru grew to become eighty percentage mined-out ruins that include critically impoverished organic groups of little worth in helping human habitation.

This unhappy story highlights the dire outcomes of a free-market economic system, a procedure in direct clash with maintaining the surroundings. In offering facts for the present mass extinction, the authors argue that we won't anticipate to maintain biodiversity or help sustainable habitation, simply because our fiscal working rules are incompatible with those activities.

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