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Earth Wars: The Battle for Global Resources Hardcover – April 24, 2012

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Editorial Reviews

Review

It's as good a one-volume resource on strategic resources as you'll find. Highly recommend. - Robert D. Harmon

Written in clear, jargon-free language, it tells the global resources story in a fresh and engaging way (Flybe, December 2012)

From the Author

"Earth Wars" is an attempt to show just how interconnected our world has become in terms of the supply and demand for all sorts of resources, as living standards rise and energy consumption grows in advanced and emerging economies.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 286 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (April 24, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1118152883
  • ISBN-13: 978-1118152881
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1.1 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #374,609 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

As a youngster growing up in Sydney, Australia, I knew what I wanted to be: a journalist and eventually a foreign correspondent. I cut my teeth on a country newspaper in 1965 at age 17, and I've now been writing about Asian business for 40-plus years, since my first exposure to the region in 1969. I'd just quit my job as a journalist with the Sydney Morning Herald and was on my way from Australia to Japan via Southeast Asia. When I reached Bangkok after travelling through Indonesia, Singapore and Malaysia, I was smitten by what for me was a strange and wonderful new environment. It was a time of great change -- the war in Vietnam, the spillover into Laos and Cambodia, the Cultural Revolution in China, racial tensions in Singapore and Malaysia -- so I decided to stay in Bangkok for a while. I've been working in or on the region ever since, from Thailand, Hong Kong, Japan and Australia. During the 1970s and 1980s, I spent eight years in Japan, concentrating on North Asia. These days, I have a special interest in India and its relationship with China. Economically, India is well on its way to a place among the 21st century giants of Asia. But how it handles such issues as education, social inclusion, environmental protection, corruption, terrorism and regional rivalries will be pivotal to its progress. In the last couple of years I've expanded my editorial coverage to incorporate energy and resources, including food and water, and the competition for these scarce resources. The culmination of that reporting is my latest book, "Earth Wars: The Battle for Global Resources," which was published internationally by John Wiley & Sons (May-June 2012). In between books, I file as a freelance journalist for a number of media outlets, including The Australian and CNN.com.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Robert D. Harmon VINE VOICE on July 24, 2012
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
It's a tightly-written but concise state-of-the-planet, as measured by his four essentials: food, water, energy, metals. It's more than that, as it provides more detail on those four subjects, as to where they are, who owns or extracts them, which corporations and nations are key players in their extraction, production and uses. He analyzes the strategic importance and potential, in terms of potential economic power. He looks at the rest of the century and who could come out ahead on this basis, and what challenges are rising. He doesn't say much about global warming but doesn't neglect the potential and downsides of renewable and nuclear energy.

Above all, the author has done an admirable job of gathering and summarizing all this in 261 pages, derived from what must have been a lot of data. It's as good a one-volume resource on strategic resources as you'll find. Highly recommend.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Michael Griswold VINE VOICE on July 14, 2012
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Geoff Hiscock has written a good introductory level text on the battle for global resources. Hiscock covers all the biggies from oil and water to the less publicized concerns about copper and silver, which is used in so many of our homes and technological products.

It's a fairly compact volume at close to 300 pages. It's compact size presents one of the books greatest shortcomings. Hiscock pumps so much information into so few pages that it can be difficult to follow.

This book while informative could've definitely used some more descriptive maps and tables that break down the supplies of resources and who holds what [the tables they have sort of blend in with the text.] I would've liked to have seen a better designed layout that brought more prominence to the tables and charts.

Still Hiscock's general thesis towers above any concerns about the presentation of data. The global rush for resources is on and its' leading countries and their corporate entities into all out scramble to get their hands on the precious resources that will power the coming decades.

There are few friends and plenty of sharks in the resource battle. There are winners and losers in the face of a world driven by greater consumption from Asia. It's a very complex picture and Hiscock does a valiant effort at distilling the complexities into a readable format.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Tell Me A Story VINE VOICE on November 18, 2012
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This book is truly masterpiece that draws together the world's demand for essential metals and other resources into the forefront explaining their impact on our past, present and most importantly tremendous impact on our geopolitical future.

Geoff Hiscock effectively connects the dots between the little known corporations and those with great notoriety, the commodity brokers (including the Koch Brothers, Archer Daniels Midland and Glencore (the reorganized company founded by the infamous scoundrel, Marc Rich + Co., sans Rich) and those prominent abroad, and the governments that provide them access. All these factors impact many of today's political standoffs over boundaries that are increasingly in contention, particularly when new discoveries made. Multiple examples are given but I found some examples of Chinese aggression particularly interesting. China is making claims of ownership over regions that became independent even centuries ago. Moreover, China maintains a combative attitude in these pursuits (one will recall the 2009 incident of the U.S. ship "USNS Impeccable" was making a pass in international waters in the S. China Sea). The Chinese surrounded the USNS Impeccable with 5 ships some coming within 25 feet of the vessel and threatening to attack. The Impeccable did not know why China was attempting to imperil the both ship and crew. The Chinese forced Impeccable to make an abrupt stop, when one ship positioned itself in its path, once it moved the Chinese tossed a large number of logs in it's path causing further peril. China made its point, no one was welcome in S. China Sea anymore!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Bold Consumer TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on August 12, 2012
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This has to be one of the best books written on global resources of food, water, energy, and metals. The author talks about the status of each as he examines every nook and cranny of our world.

I have two reasons why I chose to read this book.

I live in a drought-stricken area of Oklahoma. There are global concerns about the availability of water now and in the future. This book addresses that situation in great detail.

The area of Oklahoma where I live has been having earthquakes. I've lived here all my life and never experienced any until 2010. Now we've had 3 rather strong ones and multitudes of small ones that are monitored but not felt. I'll admit that it wasn't a problem for me when the number and intensity of earthquakes increased over a couple of counties from my house. I just considered that it was because of the hydraulic fracturing "fracking" that they do over in that area. It was a different story when they picked up in intensity here at my house. I don't like it a bit. I was interested in the section of Earth Wars: The Battle For Global Resources that addressed fracking. I don't have a bit of a sense of humor about companies taking actions that make my house shake violently. I read everything I can about fracking and most studies have said that while they don't believe it causes the earthquakes, it is thought to make them larger. That is an unpleasant thought that is unacceptable.

As I read through the parts on water and drilling, my own special interests, I learned much more than I had expected, about food, water, energy, and metals and their availability across the globe.

I recommend this book for any thoughtful person concerned about global resources.
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