Rescuing the Planet: Protecting Half the Land to Heal the Earth

Tony Hiss. Knopf, $27.95 (304p) ISBN 978-0-525-65481-0
Former New Yorker staff writer Hiss (Long Road from Quito) takes an illuminating look at movements aiming to head off mass extinction by protecting 50% of the land in North America by 2050. “The science of Half Earth,” Hiss writes, began in the 1930s with an essay written by ecologists urging for protected buffer zones. In the ensuing decades, he notes, environmental activists and Indigenous communities have been working towards this goal. Hiss covers various approaches they’ve pursued, such as wildlife sanctuaries, Indigenous Protected Areas paid for by the government, and efforts to create a green reserve encircling Boston. One massive project, the Canadian Boreal Forest Conservation Framework, kicked off in 2003 and seeks to protect half of the Boreal Forest, a vast forest that stretches from the Yukon to Newfoundland. Hiss also highlights efforts to create wildlife corridors via a “network of sanctuaries” likeet hose that currently range down the Appalachian Trail, throughout Greater Yellowstone, and in Canada’s Banff National Park. Hiss creates a sense of hope with lyrical descriptions and immersive portrayals of various programs across the continent: “It’s our marvelous privilege to be participants in and guardians of an ancient community billions of years old, the continuousness of life itself.” This eye-opening survey will leave readers inspired. (Mar.)
Reviewed on : 01/11/2021
Release date: 03/30/2021
Genre: Nonfiction
Book - 978-0-525-65482-7
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