October 23, 1991
By applying medical science to our planet as a whole, James Lovelock, visionary creator of the Gaia theory, gives us an exciting new way of understanding the frailties and strengths of planet Earth.
With the publication of his first book, Gaia: A New Look at Life on Earth, James Lovelock changed the way a generation of readers perceives our planet. His revolutionary hypothesis, which proposes that our planet is not just a collection of living things but acts as a single living organism itself, has earned millions of adherents among the scientific and general public alike. Now, in Healing Gaia: A New Prescription for the Living Planet, Lovelock expands his original concept to ask perhaps the most pressing question of all: if the planet is alive, what is its health? In answering, he explores with us the real effects of the threats we hear so much about: acid rain, deforestation, ozone depletion, the widespread extinction of species, and so on. According to Lovelock, humans hardly need worry about destroying the Earth, but the Earth may rid itself of the species that threatens to vigorously to alter the conditions that make life possible. Finally Lovelock provides guidelines for a healthy global environment that will ensure the future of our species.
In the face of an almost daily barrage of doomsday warnings, Healing Gaia: A New Prescription for the Living Planet enables readers to put environmental concerns into new perspective by developing a more complete and sophisticated understanding of the Earth in whose life we all share.
James Lovelock is a Fellow of the Royal Society and life sciences consultant to the space program for Lunar and Planetary Research at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. Among his many inventions is the electron capture detector, which led to the discovery of the global buildup of fluorocarbons – critical both to understanding the greenhouse effect and the ozone layer. Lovelock’s Gaia hypothesis, the idea that Earth functions as a single organism, has dramatically altered our view of evolution and the environment.