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List of Maps xiii Prologue: A Tale of Two Farms Two farms * Collapses, past and present · Vanished Edens? · A five-point framework . Businesses and the environment " The comparative method · Plan of the book · Part One: MODERN MONTANA 25 Chapter 1: Under Montana's Big Sky 27 Stan Falkow's story - Montana and me · Why begin with Montana? · Montana's economic history . Mining · Forests " Soil * Water * Native and non-native species * Differing visions * Attitudes towards regulation " Rick Laible's story i Chip Pigman's story " Tim Huls's story * John Cook's story " Montana, model of the world - Part Two: PAST SOCIETIES 77 Chapter 2: Twilight at Easter 79 The quarry's mysteries m Easter's geography and history People and food * Chiefs, clans, and commoners " Platforms and statues * Carving, transporting, erecting * The vanished forest · Consequences for society * Europeans and explanations · Why was Easter fragile? " Easter as metaphor * Chapter 3: The Last People Alive: Pitcairn and Henderson Islands 120 Pitcairn before the Bounty " Three dissimilar islands * Trade - The movie's ending * Chapter 4: The Ancient Ones: The Anasazi and Their Neighbors 136 Desert farmers a Tree rings a Agricultural strategies * Chaco's problems and packrats * Regional integration a Chaco's decline and end * Chaco's message Chapter 5: The Maya Collapses 157 Mysteries of lost cities " The Maya environment a Maya agriculture · Maya history " Copan a Complexities of collapses a Wars and droughts a Collapse in the southern lowlands a The Maya message X Chapter 6: The Viking Prelude and Fugues 178 Experiments in the Atlantic " The Viking explosion a Autocatalysis a Viking agriculture - Iron a Viking chiefs a Viking religion X Orkneys, Shetlands, Faeroes · Iceland's environment * Iceland's history * Iceland in context " Vinland s Chapter 7: Norse Greenland's Flowering 211 Europe's outpost a Greenland's climate today a Climate in the past · Native plants and animals a Norse settlement " Farming a Hunting and fishing · An integrated economy " Society a Trade with Europe a Self-image " Chapter 8: Norse Greenland's End 248 Introduction to the end * Deforestation · Soil and turf damage · The Inuit's predecessors · Inuit subsistence a Inuit/Norse relations * The end a Ultimate causes of the end · Chapter 9: Opposite Paths to Success 277 Bottom up, top down * New Guinea highlands * Tilknnia Chapter 12: China, Lurching Giant 358 China's significance · Background * Air, water, soil a Habitat, species, megaprojects · Consequences a Connections · The future " Chapter 13: "Mining"Australia 378 Australia's significance a Soils * Water a Distance * Early history · Imported values a Trade and immigration · Land degradation " Other environmental problems " Signs of hope and change " Part Four: PRACTICAL LESSONS 417 Chapter 14: Why Do Some Societies Make Disastrous Decisions? 419 Road map for success , Failure to anticipate · Failure to perceive · Rational bad behavior * Disastrous values * Other irrational failures * Unsuccessful solutions * Signs of hope · Chapter 15: Big Businesses and the Environment: Different Conditions, Different Outcomes 441 Resource extraction * Two oil fields · Oil company motives " Hardrock mining operations " Mining company motives · Differences among mining companies " The logging industry " Forest Stewardship Council , The seafood industry · Businesses and the public a Chapter 16: The World as a Polder: What Does It All Mean to Us Today? 486 Introduction * The most serious problems " If we don't solve them... a Life in Los Angeles " One-liner objections " The past and the present * Reasons for hope " Acknowledgments 526 Further Readings 529 Index 561 Illustration Credits 576Library of Congress Subject Headings for this publication: Social history Case studies, Social change Case studies, Environmental policy Case studies