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Mountains: A Very Short Introduction [#444]
Mountains: A Very Short Introduction [#444]
  • Looks at both the regional and global effects of mountains on climate and ecosystems
  • Considers the value of mountains to humanity, as centres of biological and cultural diversity, religious sanctuaries, sources of food, timber, and medicines, and major centres for tourism
  • Discusses the impact of climate change on mountains, and considers how this affects the people who rely on mountains for their livelihood or culture

Mountains cover a quarter of the Earth's land surface and are home to about 12 percent of the global population. They are the sources of all the world's major rivers, affect regional weather patterns, provide centres of biological and cultural diversity, hold deposits of minerals, and provide both active and contemplative recreation. Yet mountains are also significantly affected by climate change; as melting and retreating glaciers show. Given the manifold goods and services which mountains provide to the world, such changes are of global importance. 
In this Very Short Introduction, Martin Price outlines why mountains matter at the global level, and addresses the existing and likely impacts of climate change on mountain, hydrological and ecological systems. Considering the risks associated with the increasing frequency of extreme events and 'natural hazards' caused by climate change, he discusses the implications for both mountain societies and wider populations, and concludes by emphasizing the need for greater cooperation in order to adapt to climate change in our increasingly globalized world.


1: Why do mountains matter?
2: Mountains are not eternal
3: The world's water towers
4: Living in a vertical world
5: Hotspots of diversity
6: Protected areas and tourism
7: Climate change in the mountains
Further Reading

About the author: 

Martin F. Price is Director of the Centre for Mountain Studies at Perth College, University of the Highlands and Islands, Scotland; Chairholder of the UNESCO Chair in Sustainable Mountain Development; and Adjunct Professor at the University of Bergen, Norway. He has been involved in numerous international initiatives for the sustainable development of mountain regions, working with organisations including the European Commission, European Environment Agency, FAO, IUCN, UNEP, UNESCO and WWF. He is the author and editor of many books and reports on mountain topics, including Mountain Geography: Physical and Human Dimensions (University of California Press, 2013).

"neat little book, perfect for carrying in a pocket or in hand luggage ... I would certainly recommend"

"this as a suitable text for pre-A level or undergraduate reading lists, or for anyone with a wider interest in mountains." - Jane Terry, Geography

"The text is packed with information and details on mountains and gives an easy-to-read insight into many facts about mountains and people's interaction with them. It is highly recommended for anybody interested and its small light-weight format allows taking it along to read at the top of a mountain." - eco.mont

"Even if your interest in mountains stops short at the Cheviot, you should find food for thought in these pages." - Mike Merchant, Scottish Mountaineer

"conveys a vivid impression of the many ways in which mountains are important to us." - Network Reviews

Product details

ISBN : 9780199695881

Martin F. Price
152 Pages
111 x 174 mm
Pub date
Sep 2015
Very Short Introductions
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Mountains: A Very Short Introduction [#444]

Mountains: A Very Short Introduction [#444]

Mountains: A Very Short Introduction [#444]