Cover image for Famous first facts about the environment
Famous first facts about the environment
Formica, Ronald J.
Publication Information:
New York : H.W. Wilson, [2002]

Physical Description:
xiv, 573 pages ; 27 cm
General Note:
Includes indexes.

"A New England Publishing Associates book."
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
GE105 .F36 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Non circulating

On Order



Wide-ranging coverage includes information on subjects such as activist movements, agriculture and horticulture, air pollution, alien species and species migration, biodiversity, botany, climate and weather, extinct and endangered species, fish and fishing, genetic engineering and iotechnology, land use and development, noise pollution, oceanography, and population growth.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

This volume is the latest in the respected Wilson Facts Series and utilizes the same formula as Famous First Facts: A Record of First Happenings, Discoveries, and Inventions in American History (5th ed., H. W. Wilson, 1997). Editor Formica seeks to "expand the record of important and interesting" environmental firsts and presents them in this format from a global perspective. The nearly 4,000 facts are organized into alphabetically arranged subject categories from "Activist Movements" to "Zoos, Aquariums, and Museums." Many categories contain further subcategories. For example, the subject heading "Wildlife" is divided additionally into "Breeding," "Conservation," "Control," and "Preserves and Restoration." Entries range in length from one sentence to one paragraph and are arranged chronologically within each category or subcategory. Each entry is assigned a four-digit indexing number, beginning with 1001. Nearly one-half of the volume contains the five indexes: a subject index of topics mentioned in the entries, an index by years (through 2002), an index by month and day, an index to persons referred to in the main entries, and a geographical index. A "How to Use This Book" page begins the work and is useful to readers unfamiliar with the arrangement of other Famous First Facts books. Although much of the information contained in this work could be located in other reference tools, the variety of environmental issues covered and the chronological presentation complement other environmental resources. This comprehensive, detail-oriented, and accessible compilation is a timesaving and valuable reference tool for environmental researchers. Academic and public libraries alike will find this a worthwhile purchase for their science reference collections.

Library Journal Review

Similar to Famous First Facts About Sports, this is another Wilson spin-off of Joseph Nathan Kane's classic Famous First Facts (FFF). Compiled by Formica, a reference book producer, the volume lists 4000 entries of international environmental "firsts," using the same subject classification system as FFF. Entries are first listed under a major subject category, such as air pollution, climate and weather, hazardous waste, population growth, and storms, which are then broken down into various subdivisions. For instance, storms has six subdivisions, including hailstorms, hurricanes, and ice storms. Entries are arranged chronologically from 2,700,000,000 B.C.E. (the first verifiable glacial epoch) through 2060 (the year the normal ozone level will return to the stratosphere, if the substances that destroy the ozone are eliminated). Each entry has a four-digit index number that is handy when using the indexes. Almost half the volume is taken up by various indexes, including subject, year, month and day, personal name, and geographical area. Only a handful of entries, such as first national parks, dams, and recorded earthquakes, also appear in the original FFF. As with all FFF titles, librarians will appreciate the tremendous effort required to compile all this data in one convenient and easy-to-use resource. This unique work should be purchased by any size library that needs an account of environmental "firsts."-Eva Lautemann, Georgia Perimeter Coll. Lib., Clarkston (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Choice Review

One of several "Famous First Facts" publications that cover narrower subject areas than Joseph Nathan Kane's basic Famous First Facts (5th edition, CH, Jul'98), this title supplies nearly 4,000 environmental "firsts," arranged in standard format: topics listed alphabetically with subdivisions, entries in chronological order within each category. Approximately half the book is devoted to five indexes: subject, year, month and day, personal name, and geographical. A few entries are also found in Famous First Facts. The subject index is limited, and it is not clear why some terms appear but not others. The broad topics include agriculture and horticulture, scenery, literature and the arts, as well as more traditional environmental issues such as pollution, land use, soil resources. Relatively new topics include "Activist movements," which has seven subdivisions; "sustainable development" has fewer basic entries, but others are scattered and can be located only through the subject index. Odd choices include "[first] distinctively American agricultural book" following "[first] agricultural book published in the United States." An enjoyable compilation of facts important and trivial, this is not a substitute for encyclopedias and dictionaries of the environment. Mainly suitable for public libraries and libraries with comprehensive environmental collections. N. Kobzina University of California, Berkeley

Table of Contents

Activist Movements--Animal Rightsp. 1
Activist Movements--Anti-Environmentalismp. 2
Activist Movements--Conservationismp. 3
Activist Movements--Ecofeminismp. 4
Activist Movements--Environmentalismp. 4
Activist Movements--Grassrootsp. 8
Activist Movements--Green Politicsp. 9
Agriculture and Horticulturep. 10
Agriculture and Horticulture--Animal Husbandry and Livestockp. 11
Agriculture and Horticulture--Cash Cropsp. 13
Agriculture and Horticulture--Diseases and Pestsp. 13
Agriculture and Horticulture--Food Cropsp. 14
Agriculture and Horticulture--Irrigationp. 14
Agriculture and Horticulture--Legislationp. 15
Agriculture and Horticulture--Methods and Equipmentp. 16
Agriculture and Horticulture--Organic Farmingp. 17
Agriculture and Horticulture--Organizationsp. 18
Agriculture and Horticulture--Pest and Weed Controlp. 18
Agriculture and Horticulture--Preservationp. 21
Air Pollutionp. 21
Air Pollution--Healthp. 22
Air Pollution--Indoorp. 23
Air Pollution--Legislation and Regulationp. 24
Air Pollution--Public Opinionp. 28
Air Pollution--Researchp. 28
Alien Species and Species Migrationp. 31
Automotive Industryp. 34
Automotive Industry--Highwaysp. 36
Automotive Industry--Legislation and Regulationp. 37
Automotive Industry--Technologyp. 38
Biodiversityp. 41
Birdsp. 43
Birds--Legislation and Regulationp. 46
Birds--Observationsp. 47
Birds--Organizationsp. 47
Birds--Refuges and Reservationsp. 48
Birds--Researchp. 48
Birds--Treatiesp. 49
Botanyp. 50
Climate and Weatherp. 53
Climate and Weather--Global Warmingp. 56
Climate and Weather--Meteorologyp. 57
Climate and Weather--Ozone Layerp. 65
Climate and Weather--Paleoclimatologyp. 68
Coal and Natural Gasp. 69
Damsp. 72
Dams--Constructionp. 73
Dams--Disastersp. 75
Droughts and Water Shortagesp. 76
Droughts and Water Shortages--Pluviculturep. 80
Earthquakesp. 80
Ecotourismp. 85
Education and Researchp. 86
Education and Research--Expositionsp. 89
Extinct and Endangered Speciesp. 90
Extinct and Endangered Species--Extinctionsp. 93
Extinct and Endangered Species--Listsp. 96
Extinct and Endangered Species--Reintroductionsp. 99
Fish and Fishingp. 101
Fish and Fishing--Commercialp. 103
Fish and Fishing--Hatcheries and Fish Farmingp. 104
Fish and Fishing--Legislation and Regulationp. 106
Fish and Fishing--Sport Fishingp. 106
Floods and Flood Controlp. 107
Floods and Flood Control--Leveesp. 110
Floods and Flood Control--Mudslidesp. 110
Forests and Treesp. 111
Forests and Trees--Deforestationp. 111
Forests and Trees--Diseases and Pestsp. 111
Forests and Trees--Fires and Fire Preventionp. 113
Forests and Trees--Legislation and Regulationp. 114
Forests and Trees--Loggingp. 115
Forests and Trees--Managementp. 116
Forests and Trees--Organizationsp. 117
Forests and Trees--Preservation and Reservesp. 118
Forests and Trees--Rain Forestsp. 119
Forests and Trees--Reforestation and Plantingp. 119
Forests and Trees--Researchp. 120
Genetic Engineering and Biotechnologyp. 121
Geology and Geophysicsp. 123
Hazardous Wastep. 127
Hunting and Trappingp. 131
Hunting and Trapping--Game Managementp. 133
Hunting and Trapping--Legislation and Regulationp. 133
Hunting and Trapping--Organizationsp. 135
Industrial Pollutionp. 135
International Lawp. 139
International Law--Conventions, Agreements, and Treatiesp. 140
International Law--Organizationsp. 144
Land Use and Developmentp. 145
Land Use and Development--Legislation and Regulationp. 145
Land Use and Development--Planningp. 146
Land Use and Development--Preservationp. 147
Land Use and Development--Property Rightsp. 148
Land Use and Development--Settlementp. 148
Land Use and Development--Wetlandsp. 149
Land Use and Development--Zoningp. 150
Literature and Arts--Arts and Artistsp. 150
Literature and Arts--Books and Writersp. 153
Literature and Arts--Photography and Televisionp. 156
Litteringp. 156
Mines and Miningp. 159
Natural Resourcesp. 162
Noise Pollutionp. 171
Noise Pollution--Legislation and Regulationp. 171
Nuclear Powerp. 173
Oceans and Oceanographyp. 180
Oil and Petroleum Industryp. 185
Oil and Petroleum Industry--Fires, Spills, and Blowoutsp. 186
Oil and Petroleum Industry--Offshore Drilling and Productionp. 187
Oil and Petroleum Industry--War and Diplomacyp. 188
Oil and Petroleum Industry--Wells and Refineriesp. 188
Parksp. 191
Parks--Legislation and Regulationp. 192
Parks--National Monumentsp. 192
Parks--National Parksp. 193
Parks--State and Urban Parksp. 197
Polar Regionsp. 197
Population Growthp. 201
Population Growth--Legislation and Regulationp. 202
Population Growth--Organizations and Conferencesp. 203
Public Health and Safetyp. 204
Sceneryp. 209
Soil Resourcesp. 214
Soil Resources--Conservationp. 215
Soil Resources--Desertificationp. 215
Soil Resources--Erosionp. 216
Soil Resources--Fertility and Fertilizersp. 216
Soil Resources--Researchp. 217
Solar Energyp. 217
Solid Wastep. 221
Solid Waste--Disposalp. 222
Solid Waste--Recyclingp. 223
Solid Waste--Street Cleaningp. 225
Stormsp. 225
Storms--Blizzards and Snowstormsp. 226
Storms--Hailstormsp. 228
Storms--Hurricanes, Cyclones, and Typhoonsp. 228
Storms--Ice Stormsp. 231
Storms--Thunderstormsp. 231
Storms--Tornadoesp. 231
Sustainable Developmentp. 233
Synthetic Fuelsp. 235
Volcanoesp. 238
Water Pollutionp. 241
Water Pollution--Destruction of Speciesp. 242
Water Pollution--Healthp. 242
Water Pollution--Industrial Dischargep. 243
Water Pollution--Legislation and Regulationp. 244
Water Pollution--Marine Pollutionp. 246
Water Pollution--Organic Pollutionp. 247
Water Pollution--Research and Technologyp. 247
Water Pollution--Sewers and Human Wastep. 248
Water Powerp. 249
Water Supply and Purificationp. 251
Water Supply and Purification--Reservoirsp. 256
Whalingp. 256
Wildernessp. 257
Wildlifep. 261
Wildlife--Breedingp. 266
Wildlife--Conservationp. 267
Wildlife--Controlp. 270
Wildlife--Preserves and Restorationp. 271
Wind Powerp. 274
Zoos, Aquariums, and Museumsp. 276
Zoos, Aquariums, and Museums--Planetariumsp. 282