Our planet and its people are in peril. Diminishing fresh water supplies, destruction of forests, polluted air, species extinction at an unparalleled rate, and a toxic petrochemical environment are all clear signals that things are going seriously haywire. And climate change, the impacts of which are already evidenced at an accelerating pace, threatens environmental devastation on an almost incomprehensible scale. Rising sea levels will overwhelm island states, low lying countries such as Bangladesh, and many of the coastal areas where the world's population is concentrated. Climate change will bring more disease outbreaks, including new diseases and variants of existing ones for which there is no treatment. Changing weather patterns will leave many populated regions with too little rain to sustain agriculture. Existing environmental problems will worsen severely unless focused and rapid steps are taken to reverse the practices that are causing them.