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The Weight of Nature : How a Changing Climate Changes Our Minds, Brains and Bodies - Clayton Aldern

The Weight of Nature

How a Changing Climate Changes Our Minds, Brains and Bodies

By: Clayton Aldern

eBook | 9 April 2024

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A troubling and humane account of how climate breakdown is rewriting our bodies' biology

The climate crisis is wreaking havoc across the globe, raising sea levels, disrupting ancient weather patterns and decimating biodiversity worldwide. But new research shows that the warming climate is not just affecting the planet's physical systems - it is affecting us all individually too.

In The Weight of Nature, the neuroscientist and journalist Clayton Page Aldern examines, for the first time, the seismic consequences of climate change on the human mind, brain and body. The now-familiar concept of climate anxiety, he shows us, is just the tip of the iceberg: a revolution is taking place in the deepest recesses of our neurochemistry. The rapidly changing environment is directly intervening in our brain health, behaviour, cognition and decision-making in real time, affecting everything from aggravated assault and online hate speech to productivity and the global dementia epidemic. Travelling the world to meet the scientists, economists and psychologists unravelling the tangled connections between us and our environment, and reporting the stories of those who are already feeling these shifts most keenly, Aldern explores how a weary world is wearing on us. It soon becomes apparent that, as climate change forces the seas and ice and heat index to their extremes, the extremities reach back.

Lucid, challenging and at times deeply moving, The Weight of Nature is a revelation, bringing to light the myriad ways in which the natural world tugs and prods at the decisions you make; how it twists and folds your memories and mental states; how this nebulous everywhere we call the environment is changing our very humanity from the inside out.

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