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  You are in: Home > Geography, Environment & Migration > Cosmic Threats  
 

Cosmic Threats
A Planetary Response

Neville Brown

Neville Brown has authored twenty books or major reports, including The Future of Air Power (1986). With the award-winning Future Global Challenge (1977) he began to give economic, social and ecological factors salience in the quest for a peaceable world. This thrust continued with New Strategy Through Space (1990) through to Global Instability and Strategic Crisis (2004) and History and Climate Change, a Eurocentric Perspective (2001), and continued with the informal trilogy: Engaging the Cosmos: Astronomy, Philosophy and Faith (2006); The Geography of Human Conflict: Approaches to Survival (2009); and The Bounds of Liberalism: The Fragility of Freedom.

 

Cosmic Threats: A Planetary Response calls for the progressive creation of supra-national institutions intended to protect life on Earth against natural threats, be these terrestrial (pandemics, super-volcanoes, major earthquakes….) or celestial (comets, asteroids, meteor storms …). The protection proffered would need to be pre-emptive though also responsive, reducing the number of adverse events but also their specific consequences. Rancid though the world scene currently looks, this may actually be a good time to look towards a planetary security programme that can build up over a century or more. It would need special international institutions that are sufficiently integrated to cope with the celestial and terrestrial contingencies anticipated yet not so much a class apart as to be a law unto themselves, a military regime able to ride roughshod over general world opinion. Such an holistic approach to planetary security might prove to be a definitive substitute for war between nations.

Professor Brown comes to such questions from a broad career background. His lead qualifications are a Masters degree from Oxford in Modern History and a Doctorate of Science from Birmingham (UK) in Applied Geophysics. He has been a naval meteorologist; staff college instructor; part-time but pro-active as a defence correspondent for several of the West’s leading journals; and political consultant. From 1980 to 1986, he was Chairman of the Council for Arms Control.

From 1993 to 1997 he worked half-time in the Sensors and Electronic Systems directorate of Britain’s Ministry of Defence. This was as the Academic Consultant in a small task force specifically created to advise the government of the day apropos what British policy to Strategic Ballistic Missile Defence should be. A declassified rendering of his 90,000-word report (published by Mansfield College, Oxford, in 1998) argued firmly against our going down this path. It could lead to a catastrophic arms race.


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Publication Details

 
Hardback ISBN:
978-1-84519-770-4
 
Paperback ISBN:
978-1-84519-771-1
 
Page Extent / Format:
160 pp. / 229 x 152 mm
 
Release Date:
January 2017
  Illustrated:   No
 
Hardback Price:
£35.00 / $55.00
 
Paperback Price:
£22.50 / $34.95
 

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