July 2011, Vol. 23, No.7

Water Volumes

Climate Change and Sustainable Development — New Challenges for Poverty Reduction

M.A. Mohamed Salih, Edward Elgar Publishing Inc., William Pratt House, 9 Dewey Court, Northhampton, MA 01060, 2009, 311 pp. $135, hardcover, ISBN: 978-1-84844-409-6.

This book was written by friends and colleagues of J.B. (Hans) Opschoor in honor of his work. Opschoor has contributed to the field of sustainable development from the time of his doctoral dissertation on “The Economic Valuation of Environmental Pollution” in 1971 until the granting of the Nobel Peace Prize to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in 2007. Opschoor was a participant on the panel. The contributors to this book, in one way or another, all have collaborated or cowritten publications with Opschoor. The book was edited by M.A. Mohamed Salih.

Salih wrote an introduction that was helpful in understanding the contents of the book. This book is a compilation of 21 contributors who were responsible for writing or cowriting its 14 chapters. The introduction provides background information on climate change and sustainable development and sets the stage for what’s to come.

The book discusses how climate change, sustainable development, and poverty reduction have changed since the 1970s and how a new global perspective is developing.

Several of the chapters discuss the links among these three topics. I was surprised that both sides of the topic were presented by the contributors, including the good and bad results of changes in the environment.

Also of interest are two particular chapters. One focuses on the formation of ecological cities, where examples of China’s ecocity and ecoprovince initiatives are presented. The other discusses biofuel production and how it has affected the agricultural economy and production.

I enjoyed this book and would recommend it to those interested in this topic. It provides a balanced view.


Timothy R. Banyai is managing engineer at Brown and Caldwell (Walnut Creek, Calif.).


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