Evolution on Planet Earth

Evolution on Planet Earth : Impact of the Physical Environment

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Driving evolution forward, the Earth's physical environment has challenged the very survival of organisms and ecosystems throughout the ages. With a fresh new perspective, Evolution on Planet Earth shows how these physical realities and hurdles shaped the primary phases of life on the planet. The book's thorough coverage also includes chapters on more proximate factors and paleoenvironmental events that influenced the diversity of life. A team of notable ecologists, evolutionary biologists, and paleontologists join forces to describe drifting continents, extinction events, and climate change -- important topics that continue to shape Earth's inhabitants to this very day. In a world where global change has become an international issue, this book provides a several billion-year evolutionary perspective on what the environment and environmental change means to life.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 456 pages
  • 182 x 242 x 34mm | 1,220.16g
  • Academic Press Inc
  • San Diego, United States
  • English
  • Approx. 100 illustrations; Illustrations, unspecified
  • 0125986556
  • 9780125986557

Table of contents

The Physical Setting for Early Life
An Evolutionary Perspective of Nitrogen Fixation
The Coupled Evolution of Life and Atmospheric Oxygen
Chemistry of the Early Oceans
The Role of Carbon Dioxide in Plant Evolution
Solar Energy and Life
Could Life Travel across Interplanetary Space?
Genome Evolution and the Impact of the Physical Environment
The Impact of Gravity on Life
Gravity, the Atmosphere and the Evolution of Animal Locomotion
Evolution and Low Temperatures
Temperature, Tectonics, and Evolution
The Interplay of Physical and Biotic Factors in Macroevolution
The Causes of Phanerozoic Extinctions
Drifting Continents and Life on Earth
Land-Sea Relations and Speciation in the Marine and Terrestrial Realms
Tectonics, Climatic Change, and the Evolution of Mammalian Ecosystems
Ice Ages, Species Distributions, and Evolution
Environmental Variability and Its Impace on Adaptive Evolution, with Special Reference to Human Origins
The Younger Dryas, Climatic Change, and the Beginnings of Agriculture
The Physical Constraints on Extraterrestrial Life
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Review quote

"An excellent text for introductory courses in biology, geology, and evolution."

"...well-written attempts at opening a broad range of material to an interested audience...Highly recommended."
-E-STREAMS (March 2004)

"...recommended for libraries supporting undergraduate programs in biology..."
-CHOICE (March 2004)
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About Adrian Lister

Lynn J. Rothschild, a Research Scientist at NASA's Ames Research Center, is immersed in the field of Astrobiology. She has broad training in biology, with degrees from Yale University, Indiana University, and Brown University. At NASA her research has focused on how life has evolved in the context of the physical environment, both here and potentially elsewhere. She has studied carbon metabolism and DNA damage and repair in algal mats, work that has taken her to field sites in Baja, Yellowstone National Park and thermal areas on New Zealand. As a result of this work she has become an acknowledged authority in the study of extremophiles, and wrote an invited review on them for Nature (2001). Recent honors have included election to the Presidency of the Social of Protozoologists, founding editor of the International Journal of Astrobiology, and a fellow of the Linnean Society of London. She has made several television and radio appearances, including on the Discovery Channel and World News Tonight, and lectures worldwide including most recently at the Vatican Observatory. Adrian Lister is Professor Palaeobiology at University College London. After a degree in Zoology from the University of Cambridge, he began research on Quaternary (Ice Age) mammals and their evolution. Today he is acknowledged as one of the world's leading experts on the biology and evolution of the mammoth and other ice-age species. He has worked on many excavations and fossil collections around the world, and has recently also become active in the field of elephant conservation. He has published over 100 scientific papers and the highly acclaimed book (with Paul G. Bahn) 'Mammoths'. He is on the Council of the Linnean Society of London and is a member of the Elephant working Group of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN). In 1998 he was awarded the Stopes Medal of the Geologists' Association for research into the environment of early Man.
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