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Sea Change Britain's Coastal Catastrophe by Richard Girling

Sea Change Britain's Coastal Catastrophe

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Sea Change Britain's Coastal Catastrophe by Richard Girling

We have a special relationship with the sea. It is the single most powerful driver of our economy, our lifestyle and our politics. It affects what we eat, how we use the land, how we relate to our neighbours, how we travel, even the thickness of our coats. Yet we go on treating it, with childlike faith and unreason, as if we imagine it to be infinitely resourceful and endlessly forgiving. Sea Change addresses such issues as pollution by sewage, nuclear waste and dumping at sea; extinction of fish stocks; destruction of marine environment, impacts of climate change, coastal erosion and rising sea levels; decline of our seaside resorts; the failure of the 'integrated transport policy'; and smuggling. In each case Girling questions: How did the situation arise? What are the consequences? What should be done? And what will happen when we fail? His unique voice blends horror, humour and 'just fancy that'; sifting for solutions in the sands, he is utterly compelling, entertaining and inspirational.


Girling pulls no punches in this passionate and blackly witty expose of the problems that face us ... We can only hope that Girling's eloquent analysis of what is wrong might affect the decisions to be made. CULTURE magazine, Sunday Times This is a vivid and devastating account of the decline and fall of the precious waters lapping our coasts ... [Girling] is an extremely good writer ... he also manages to weave a wonderfully dry humour into the long and sorry catalogue of generations of neglect and short-sightedness ... This is a book to make you think. Daily Mail Anyone who cares about the coast should read this book - before it is too late. Nicholas Crane Scarcely pausing for one slow and adoring gaze across the Norfolk coast he loves, Richard Girling plunges off from the first page into the most brilliant and devastating attack yet written on bungling, political weakness, incompetence and sheer slowness of those who are meant to be in charge of the seas around our shores. Evening Standard Richard Girling calls the sea our civilisation's amniotic fluid . His story of its violation by oil pollution, over-fishing, climate-change-driven erosion and our belief that we have the wisdom to manage the marine environment is shocking. It's a story of arrogance, ignorance and greed, and in Girling's electrifying prose it becomes a parable of wilful matricide. Richard Mabey

About the Author

Richard Girling was editorial manager of the Sunday Times Magazine, had a regular column for the Daily Telegraph during the 1990s, and is now a senior feature writer on the Sunday Times Magazine - contracted to write a minimum 8 cover stories and/or major features a year. He is the author of THE VIEW FROM THE TOP, an illustrated guide to the structure and history of the British landscape (Little, Brown 1997), and was a major contributor to the Readers' Digest social history of the 20th century, YESTERDAY'S BRITAIN. He has edited seven Sunday Times books. He won the Evian Award in 1989 for a special issue of ST Magazine on the medical effects of alcohol and, in 2002, the Specialist Writer of the Year at the UK Press Awards. He is a consultant to Reader's Digest and to the Department of Culture, Media and Sport and his commercial clients have included Ford, Esso, Harveys of Bristol, Prudential, Philips, the Heritage Lottery Fund, the RIBA, the Department of the Environment, the Council for the Protection of Rural England and the Civic Trust.

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Book Info

Publication date

29th May 2012


Richard Girling

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Eden Project Books an imprint of Transworld Publishers Ltd


384 pages


Pollution & threats to the environment



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