Commencez à lire The Emerald Planet: How plants changed Earth's history sur votre Kindle dans moins d'une minute. Vous n'avez pas encore de Kindle ? Achetez-le ici Ou commencez à lire dès maintenant avec l'une de nos applications de lecture Kindle gratuites.

Envoyer sur votre Kindle ou un autre appareil


Essai gratuit

Découvrez gratuitement un extrait de ce titre

Envoyer sur votre Kindle ou un autre appareil

Désolé, cet article n'est pas disponible en
Image non disponible pour la
couleur :
Image non disponible

The Emerald Planet: How plants changed Earth's history [Format Kindle]

David Beerling

Prix conseillé : EUR 10,35 De quoi s'agit-il ?
Prix éditeur - format imprimé : EUR 12,43
Prix Kindle : EUR 7,25 TTC & envoi gratuit via réseau sans fil par Amazon Whispernet
Économisez : EUR 5,18 (42%)

App de lecture Kindle gratuite Tout le monde peut lire les livres Kindle, même sans un appareil Kindle, grâce à l'appli Kindle GRATUITE pour les smartphones, les tablettes et les ordinateurs.

Pour obtenir l'appli gratuite, saisissez votre adresse e-mail ou numéro de téléphone mobile.


Prix Amazon Neuf à partir de Occasion à partir de
Format Kindle EUR 7,25  
Relié EUR 39,88  
Broché EUR 9,15  
SAINT-VALENTIN : Découvrez toutes nos idées cadeaux pour Elle et Lui dans la boutique Saint-Valentin.

Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

If I can find a fault with this book it is that each subsequent chapter is so engrossing that it drives the author's previous deliberations from my head... I will return to this book again and again. (Lyn Dunachie, Glasgow Natural History Society)

David Beerling's book is both fascinating and important. (P D Smith, The Guardian)

An illuminating account of the ways "greenhouse gases, genes, and geochemistry" are linked. (P D Smith, The Guardian)

My favourite non-fiction book this year...[a] highly readable history of the last half-billion years on earth (Oliver Sacks, Observer Books of the Year)

David Beerling tells two stories in parallel. Both are eloquently and engagingly merged in a scholarly, yet generally accessible book...Beerling provides for the reader a fascinating history of the discovery of fossils and the inferences drawn from them...this book is a wonderful example of the nascent field of Earth systems science. (Paul Falkowski, Nature)

...of great value and relevance to all interested in plants, climate and, equally, the future of our 'emerald planet'. (John MacLeod, RHS Professor of Horticulture, Garden)

David Beerling's fascinating new book offers a new global perspective on the evolution of our planet...[a] vivid account...The environmental legacy of the plant kingdom upon our world can only be better appreciated after reading this book. (Louis Ronse De Craene)

A beautifully detailed account...a gorgeous book. (Steven Poole, The Guardian (Review))

[A] fascinating overview of green evolution. (Karl Dallas, Morning Star)

Within these pages is one of the greatest stories ever told ... It is as fascinating as it is important. (New Scientist)

The Emerald Planet is a serious talking-to about why plants must not be ignored. (Jonathan Silvertown, TLS)

Présentation de l'éditeur

Plants have transformed our planet over the last 470 million years as they invaded the land and diversified into the astonishing variety we know today. But their influence has reached even further: they have profoundly moulded the Earth's climate and the evolutionary trajectory of life. Far from being 'silent witnesses to the passage of time', plants are dynamic components of our world, shaping the environment throughout history as much as that environment has shaped them.

In The Emerald Planet, David Beerling puts plants centre stage, revealing the crucial role they have played in driving global changes in the environment, in recording hidden facets of Earth's history, and in helping us to predict its future. His account draws together evidence from fossil plants, from experiments with their living counterparts, and from computer models of the 'Earth System', to illuminate the history of our planet and its biodiversity. This new approach reveals how
plummeting carbon dioxide levels removed a barrier to the evolution of the leaf; how forests once grew on Antarctica, how plants played a starring role in allowing spectacular giant insects to thrive in the Carboniferous; and strengthens fascinating and contentious fossil evidence for an ancient hole in the
ozone layer. Along the way, Beerling introduces a lively cast of pioneering scientists from Victorian times onwards whose discoveries provided the crucial background to these and the other puzzles.

This new understanding of our planet's past sheds a sobering light on our own climate-changing activities, and offers clues to what our climatic and ecological futures might look like. There could be no more important time to take a close look at plants, and to understand the history of the world through the stories they tell.

Détails sur le produit

En savoir plus sur les auteurs

Découvrez des livres, informez-vous sur les écrivains, lisez des blogs d'auteurs et bien plus encore.

Commentaires en ligne

Il n'y a pas encore de commentaires clients sur
5 étoiles
4 étoiles
3 étoiles
2 étoiles
1 étoiles
Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 4.3 étoiles sur 5  11 commentaires
43 internautes sur 45 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Arranging carts and horses 30 juillet 2007
Par Stephen A. Haines - Publié sur
For many years, as fossil plants emerged from the rocks, it was believed that these records reflected changes in climate. Plants, it was assumed, had to adapt to variations in weather and other conditions. According to Beerling, plant life was instead the major prompter of climate change. The balance of atmospheric gases was determined by the micro-organisms floating in the seas. The ability to absorb carbon dioxide, coupled with the use of sunlight to convert that into nutrients gives plants the power to shift gas quantities. During the early days, plants exhaled oxygen. It was poison to most organisms, but those capable of using it began the drive leading to today's life. In this useful survey of all the forces forming today's world, Beerling traces how plants "changed Earth's history". Following his thesis requires the reader's close attention, since the organisation of the material is necessarily loose - not fixed chronology nor subject. The many topics to cover cannot be neatly niched.

To the author, the biggest mystery lies in the long delay between plants colonising the land and the formation of the first leaves. Leaf structure reflects how the plant is using energy. That, in turn, becomes a signal of how the atmosphere is composed at any given time. This knowledge was assembled over many years through the work of many researchers. Beerling traces the building of data resources and how the information was interpreted. Images of leaves and stems, analysis of the rock chemistry, field observations and laboratory experiments all contributed to the picture of plant evolution. Numerous surprises emerged, sometimes leading scholars to doubt the data and even their methodology. Looking at the life of plants down the ages is, as he puts it, looking "Through a glass darkly". Pervading his presentation is what the implications are for what is occurring in today's atmosphere - on which our life and those of our children, depends.

Beerling deems investigations into ancient atmospheres a form of "breathalyser", such as the police apply to suspected impaired drivers. In this case, however, it's not alcohol fumes that are measured, but carbon dioxide. Other gases are also sought, but they don't often leave sufficient clues. The information must be derived indirectly. Again, it's the plant's leaves that are used as the pointers to how ancient atmospheres fluctuated. Underlying the variations is the mighty force of plate tectonics. The shifting of land masses and changes in surface configuration leads plants to shift their survival strategies. Acting far more rapidly than creeping continents, the ability of plants to accelerate or impair rock weathering shifts the presence of gas quantities. Carbon dioxide quantities have varied markedly, leading to most of the world's history being warm times. Only recently - in geologic terms - has the planet experienced a cool era, which led to the "ice age" that scoured the Northern Hemisphere with massive glaciers.

As with so much in science, the revelation that plants drive climate instead of passively responding to it has produced at least as many questions as answers. There are anomalous circumstances that must be unravelled. The knowledge gained has led to the formation of "Earth system analysis" techniques using various forms of computer modelling. Many details, however, remain to be worked out. Atmostpheric studies are particularly impaired by lack of knowledge of cloud formation and distribution. Carbon itself, both as a greenhouse gas and as a component of plant growth, remains enigmatic. Beerling traces the selectivity of plants in choosing which carbon isotope will be utilised. That choice has impact on which plants will become dominant in a given area, which also has implications for the animal life living from them. There are no simple nor ready answers to what plants have meant in tracing life's development. Yet, as he emphasises frequently, these are questions that must be addressed further, and that, soon. Understanding our atmosphere is essential to our future. [stephen a. haines - Ottawa, Canada]
18 internautes sur 18 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Relating Paleobotany to Global Warming 15 mai 2009
Par Lara Chetkovich - Publié sur
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
This was one of the best books I read this year. It is superbly written, and makes paleobotany come to life with vividly historical details such as how the Victorian obsession with specimen collection handily provided a data-mine for scientists who are trying to understand how CO2 levels interact with homeobox genes for stomata. It also combines a rich story of geological events with plant evolution and provides one of the best overviews of how CO2 levels affect climate. While it is largely devoid of climate alarmism, you will think about the effect of mass extinction of plant life on our climate long after you put the book down.
39 internautes sur 45 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 a good idea 6 octobre 2007
Par G. Korthof - Publié sur
It is a very good idea of David Beerling to start each chapter of 'The Emerald Planet' with a short and clear summary. It is immediately clear what the author is arguing in the chapter and what it is about. By browsing through the book and reading all the chapter summaries, one gets an excellent idea what the author is arguing. This is a very good service for the reader who does not have an unlimited amount of time and wants to access if the current book is the right one to invest time in. Above that, it is such a pleasant feature. Compare this book with Oliver Morton 'Eating the Sun' which is a similar subject, but lacks that kind of clarity, then I prefer to invest my time in David Beerling.
4 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Climate - the last 500 million years 24 août 2012
Par Sceptique500 - Publié sur
Until a bunch of upstart apes started messing with the climate on earth, three factors co-determined it: (a) deep processes within the earth, which set the pace of the long-term C02 cycle, but also determined continental drift (and the relationship between sea and land) as well as volcanism (see here OPPENHEIMER Eruptions that Shook the World); (b) objects from out of space; (c) plants. A paleo-climatologist, Prof. BEERLING has written lucidly of the role of plants, while not neglecting the other factors. I can only recommend this book which, as others have noted already, is very well and lucidly written..

"Paleo"-scientists are like sleuths: from few odds and ends of the past they try to reconstruct probable causes for observed climatic change. It is a technique-driven endeavor, and all based on ingenuity, and clever reasoning. To summarize the results, but also the convoluted search for causes of climate change is no easy task. Prof. BEERLING's has succeeded. He "takes no intellectual prisoners" - simply because the chains of reasoning are often long, and the conclusions often startling.

One cannot summarize all points made in the book, but here a few examples.

It took 50 million years for plants to move on land, 450 million years ago. Why it took so long is a fascinating story of limitations removed one after the other.

Once on land, plants went wild - oxygen levels rose from say 21% to 35%, allowing for giant insects. A scenario is proffered: it takes a whole chapter to transform what was once a hunch in a plausible explanation.

In the Eocene climate suddenly increased way beyond current levels. The use of quantitative models allowed first the identification, then the wholesale conviction of the "usual suspects": C02, methane, and what else. Understanding the Eocene climate has helped us with current phenomena, and vice-versa. The rigor with which the models are tested for past change does give confidence that current models have some solid foundation in predicting the consequences of apish behavior.

The most thrilling chapter, to me, is the one on the emergence of C4-grasses and their role in shaping world climate 8 million years ago. This chapter is astonishing.
6 internautes sur 7 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 A bit too patriotic... 14 mars 2013
Par T. A. Moore - Publié sur
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
David Beerling is obviously a highly regarded scientist and this well researched book is evidence of his abilities. The book is well written and quite easy to read. I'm a geologist, more or less in an adjacent field to Mr Beerling so it was with special interest I purchased this book. It does give plenty of facts about plants and climate and how these have changed over time. I would recommend this but ... and I bet you knew there was a but ... there are some things that kept annoying me throughout the reading.

I can't stress enough that this does seem to be a well research book (though with some errors - see below). But there wasn't a chapter in the book where Mr Beerling's bias for anything British didn't leak through. I'm sorry, but Scott wasn't the first to the south pole, why try and make it as if really his journey was more legitimate than Amundsen's? There are numerous examples of this but the only other one I'll cite is his assessment of Marie Stopes. It is well recognised that she was a pioneer in coal science and women reproductive education but only Mr Beerling makes a wild statement about her poetry being well regarded; Although a great person in her own right, poetry was not her strong suit. In the words of 'Meatloaf' though: two out of three ain't bad - so why the need to make all things British be spectacular? It takes away from what are the great things that have come from the small isle.

One of the most annoying aspects of the book, however, was when Mr Beerling was citing his own work. I could always tell when it was his work he was referring to as there seemed to be special praise and a long build up to why these "UK group of scientists ... " did this or did that. It was all a bit too disingenuous and subtracted from the credibility of the book as a piece of scientific work. It leaves question marks over the other conclusions which are given in the book. In the end, I felt Mr Beerling was pushing an agenda and selecting research that would favor his point of view. There definitely was a feeling that Mr Beerling had a 'who's in and who's out' list of researchers.

There were some factual errors, which I won't go into here and only cite one. Methanogens don't break down organic matter to make methane. The actual process is that bacteria breaks down the organic material into CO2 or a few other substances and then methanogens convert those products into methane. If this relatively well established process is incorrect how many other details has Mr Beerling gotten wrong?

I'd suggest to others that the book Oxygen: The Molecule that Made the World (Popular Science) by Nick Lane is much better written, more objective, less self pandering and ultimately more credible and digestible than Mr Beerling's book. Finally, if you are looking for a book on plant evolution and how climate and plants really interact (and one that presents data and doesn't seem to be pushing an agenda) please get the book The Evolution of Plants by K.J. Willis and J.C. McElwain. Although Willis' and McElwain's excellent book is a text book it is ultimately more satisfying than 'The Emerald Planet'.
Ces commentaires ont-ils été utiles ?   Dites-le-nous

Discussions entre clients

Le forum concernant ce produit
Discussion Réponses Message le plus récent
Pas de discussions pour l'instant

Posez des questions, partagez votre opinion, gagnez en compréhension
Démarrer une nouvelle discussion
Première publication:
Aller s'identifier

Rechercher parmi les discussions des clients
Rechercher dans toutes les discussions Amazon

Rechercher des articles similaires par rubrique