OUR COUNTRY THE PLANET

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9780413455819: OUR COUNTRY THE PLANET

Global warming. Acid rain. Expanding deserts. Dwindling forests. Depletion of the ozone layer. Freshwater scarcity. The problems are all too familiar, and the lengthening list adds up to a crisis that threatens to overwhelm us unless an unprecedented level of international cooperation can be reached.
But all countries have not contributed equally to these problems, and all are not in equal positions to solve them. Shridath Ramphal, former secretary-general of the British Commonwealth and president of the World Conservation Union, warns in this timely book that the global effort needed to solve the environmental crisis has been undermined by fundamental differences between the developed and developing worlds.
Ramphal presents a course of action that accounts for the needs and limitations of both rich and poor countries. He argues that industrial countries must consume less energy so that poorer countries may consume more, allowing for increased development without a corresponding increase in the overall level of greenhouse gases. He presses for more equitable trade policies that would allow developing nations to work their way out of poverty rather than rely on hand-outs, which would only lead to continued dependence.
In addition, he shows how industrial countries have stymied progress in the developing world by subsidizing their own agricultural products, levying stiff tariffs to keep out processed and manufactured goods, and ensuring that commodity prices remain low--all of which have left developing countries no choice but to over-exploit their natural resources and degrade the environment in a desperate attempt to compete in world markets.

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About the Author:

Sir Shridath Ramphal is a former minister of Guyana and was secretary-general of the fifty-nation Commonwealth 1975-1990. He was a member of all the major international commissions that reported in the 1980s, including the Brandt Commission on Environment and Development. Formally president of the World Conservation Union (IUCN) and chairman of a commission looking into the future of the West Indies, he brings to his writing the views of a lifelong internationalist informed by the perspectives of developing nations.

From Library Journal:

This book addresses the question: "If the development of the quarter of the world's people who are now rich has brought us all so close to the limits of sustainable living on Earth, how is the development of the three-quarters who are poor to be accommodated?" For Ramphal, president of the World Conservation Union and a native of Guyana, that challenge is more than academic--it is a matter of ethics, of maintaining a decent quality of living for people in developed countries, of ensuring that people in developing countries have opportunities for economic growth. Among the topics he covers are global warming, ozone depletion, fossil fuel consumption, deforestation, water contamination, biodiversity, and disposal of nuclear materials. Ramphal incorporates scientific information from many sources to underscore a correlative theme, that developed countries must lower their own natural resource consumption levels while enabling developing countries to achieve higher growth levels. His explanations of the physical bases of current environmental problems are easily accessible to all readers. An excellent purchase for public libraries, especially in light of the recent Earth Summit. Previewed in "Sources for Sustaining the Earth," LJ 5/15/92, p. 116-17.--Ed.
- Ruth M. Mara, Agency for International Development, Washington,
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Book Description Lime Tree, UK, 1992. Hardcover. Book Condition: Very Good. Dust Jacket Condition: Very Good. First Edition. Signed by Author. 288 Pages. Signed by the author with a personal dedication on title page. Back of the dustcover is marked. The 1992 United Nations 'Earth Summit' in Rio de Janeiro may be humankind's best oppurtunity to save the planet. Only radical concerted action, by governments and people, can effectively address the range of environmental and economic problems. Synopsis : The 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro may be humankind's last opportunity to take radical concerted action to avoid environmental tragedy. This book assesses the gravity of the problem and considers the choices facing us. The book argues that the problems of the Earth are not the exclusive responsibility of any one group, the first world or the third, the east or the west, and that if we are to forestall the death of humankind alongside the extinction of other species on the planet, we will need to adopt a holistic perspective on a problem that knows neither boundaries nor nationalities. Size: 25cm. 288 pages. Quantity Available: 1. Category: Miscellaneous; Signed by Author. ISBN: 0413455815. ISBN/EAN: 9780413455819. Bookseller Inventory # V280-1189

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