Oliver Morton - Author

About the Author

OLIVER MORTON is Briefings Editor of the Economist, having formerly been Chief News Editor of Nature and Editor of Wired UK. He is the author of Mapping Mars: Science, Imagination, and the Birth of a World and Eating the Sun: How Light Powers the Planet. He has written for many publications, including Nature, the Independent, National Geographic, the New Yorker, Newsweek, Prospect, and Wired. Asteroid 10716 Olivermorton is named for him.

Featured books by Oliver Morton

The Planet Remade How Geoengineering Could Change the World

The Planet Remade How Geoengineering Could Change the World

Author: Oliver Morton Format: Paperback Release Date: 07/07/2016

The risks of global warming are real, and potentially vast. The difficulty of doing without fossil fuels is daunting, and possible insurmountable. So there is an urgent need for new thinking on climate. To meet that need, a small but increasingly influential group of scientists is exploring proposals for planned human intervention in the climate system. A stratospheric veil against the sun; the cultivation of photosynthetic plankton; a fleet of unmanned ships seeding clouds: these are the radical technologies of climate geoengineering. It is chilling to think of such power, and such scope for misadventure or malice, in humans hands. And yet we are now at the point where we have no choice but to take them very seriously indeed. The Planet Remade explores the science, history and politics behind these strategies. It looks at who might want to see geoengineering put to use - and why others would be dead set against it. In the last two centuries, changes to the planet - to the clouds and soils, to the winds and the seas, to the great cycles of nitrogen and carbon - have been far more profound than most of us realize. Appreciating the scale of that change compels us to rethink not just our responses to global warming, but our relationship to nature.

Other books by Oliver Morton

The Planet Remade How Geoengineering Could Change the World

The Planet Remade How Geoengineering Could Change the World

Author: Oliver Morton Format: Paperback Release Date: 02/05/2017

The risks of global warming are pressing and potentially vast. The difficulty of doing without fossil fuels is daunting, possibly even insurmountable. So there is an urgent need to rethink our responses to the crisis. To meet that need, a small but increasingly influential group of scientists is exploring proposals for planned human intervention in the climate system: a stratospheric veil against the sun, the cultivation of photosynthetic plankton, fleets of unmanned ships seeding the clouds. These are the technologies of geoengineering--and as Oliver Morton argues in this visionary book, it would be as irresponsible to ignore them as it would be foolish to see them as a simple solution to the problem. The Planet Remade explores the history, politics, and cutting-edge science of geoengineering. Morton weighs both the promise and perils of these controversial strategies and puts them in the broadest possible context. The past century's changes to the planet--to the clouds and the soils, to the winds and the seas, to the great cycles of nitrogen and carbon--have been far more profound than most of us realize. Appreciating those changes clarifies not just the scale of what needs to be done about global warming, but also our relationship to nature. Climate change is not just one of the twenty-first century's defining political challenges. Morton untangles the implications of our failure to meet the challenge of climate change and reintroduces the hope that we might. He addresses the deep fear that comes with seeing humans as a force of nature, and asks what it might mean--and what it might require of us--to try and use that force for good.

The Planet Remade How Geoengineering Could Change the World

The Planet Remade How Geoengineering Could Change the World

Author: Oliver Morton Format: Paperback Release Date: 07/07/2016

The risks of global warming are real, and potentially vast. The difficulty of doing without fossil fuels is daunting, and possible insurmountable. So there is an urgent need for new thinking on climate. To meet that need, a small but increasingly influential group of scientists is exploring proposals for planned human intervention in the climate system. A stratospheric veil against the sun; the cultivation of photosynthetic plankton; a fleet of unmanned ships seeding clouds: these are the radical technologies of climate geoengineering. It is chilling to think of such power, and such scope for misadventure or malice, in humans hands. And yet we are now at the point where we have no choice but to take them very seriously indeed. The Planet Remade explores the science, history and politics behind these strategies. It looks at who might want to see geoengineering put to use - and why others would be dead set against it. In the last two centuries, changes to the planet - to the clouds and soils, to the winds and the seas, to the great cycles of nitrogen and carbon - have been far more profound than most of us realize. Appreciating the scale of that change compels us to rethink not just our responses to global warming, but our relationship to nature.

The Planet Remade How Geoengineering Could Change the World

The Planet Remade How Geoengineering Could Change the World

Author: Oliver Morton Format: Hardback Release Date: 03/11/2015

The risks of global warming are pressing and potentially vast. The difficulty of doing without fossil fuels is daunting, possibly even insurmountable. So there is an urgent need to rethink our responses to the crisis. To meet that need, a small but increasingly influential group of scientists is exploring proposals for planned human intervention in the climate system: a stratospheric veil against the sun, the cultivation of photosynthetic plankton, fleets of unmanned ships seeding the clouds. These are the technologies of geoengineering--and as Oliver Morton argues in this visionary book, it would be as irresponsible to ignore them as it would be foolish to see them as a simple solution to the problem. The Planet Remade explores the history, politics, and cutting-edge science of geoengineering. Morton weighs both the promise and perils of these controversial strategies and puts them in the broadest possible context. The past century's changes to the planet--to the clouds and the soils, to the winds and the seas, to the great cycles of nitrogen and carbon--have been far more profound than most of us realize. Appreciating those changes clarifies not just the scale of what needs to be done about global warming, but also our relationship to nature. Climate change is not just one of the twenty-first century's defining political challenges. Morton untangles the implications of our failure to meet the challenge of climate change and reintroduces the hope that we might. He addresses the deep fear that comes with seeing humans as a force of nature, and asks what it might mean--and what it might require of us--to try and use that force for good.

Eating the Sun How Plants Power the Planet

Eating the Sun How Plants Power the Planet

Author: Oliver Morton Format: Paperback Release Date: 06/08/2009

`Eating the Sun' is the story of the discovery of a miracle: the source of life itself. From the intricacies of its molecular processes to the beauty of the nature that it supports, `Eating the Sun' is a wondering tribute to the extraordinary process that has allowed plants to power the earth for billions of years. Photosynthesis is the most mundane of miracles. It surrounds us in our gardens and parks and countryside; even our cityscapes are shot through with trees. It makes nature green - the signature of the pigments with which plants harvest the sun; wherever nature offers us greenery, the molecular machinery of photosynthesis is making oxygen, energy and organic matter from the raw material of sunlight, water and carbon dioxide. We rarely give the green machinery that brings about this transformation much thought, and few of us understand its beautifully honed mechanisms. But we are dimly aware that those photosynthetic mechanisms are the basis of our lives twice over: the ultimate source of all our food and the ultimate source of every breath we take. `Eating the Sun' will foster and enrich that awareness. And by connecting aspects of photosynthesis that are vital to our lives, to the crucial role its molecular mechanisms have played through more than two billion years of the earth's history, `Eating the Sun' will change the way the reader sees the world.

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