The Devil's Element: Phosphorus and a World Out of Balance

The Devil's Element: Phosphorus and a World Out of Balance Image

“A New Yorker Best Book of 2023 • A Smithsonian Staff Favorite of 2023

The New York Times best-selling author on the source of great bounty—and now great peril—all over the world.

Phosphorus has played a critical role in some of the most lethal substances on earth: firebombs, rat poison, nerve gas. But it’s also the key component of one of the most vital: fertilizer, which has sustained life for billions of people. In this major work of explanatory science and environmental journalism, Pulitzer Prize finalist Dan Egan investigates the past, present, and future of what has been called “the oil of our time.”

The story of phosphorus spans the globe and vast tracts of human history. First discovered in a seventeenth-century alchemy lab in Hamburg, it soon became a highly sought-after resource. The race to mine phosphorus took people from the battlefields of Waterloo, which were looted for the bones of fallen soldiers, to the fabled guano islands off Peru, the Bone Valley of Florida, and the sand dunes of the Western Sahara. Over the past century, phosphorus has made farming vastly more productive, feeding the enormous increase in the human population. Yet, as Egan harrowingly reports, our overreliance on this vital crop nutrient is today causing toxic algae blooms and “dead zones” in waterways from the coasts of Florida to the Mississippi River basin to the Great Lakes and beyond. Egan also explores the alarming reality that diminishing access to phosphorus poses a threat to the food system worldwide—which risks rising conflict and even war.

With The Devil’s Element, Egan has written an essential and eye-opening account that urges us to pay attention to one of the most perilous but little-known environmental issues of our time.

Details e-Book The Devil's Element: Phosphorus and a World Out of Balance

🗸 Author(s):
🗸 Title: The Devil's Element: Phosphorus and a World Out of Balance
🗸 Rating : 4.5 from 5 stars (7 reviews)
🗸 Format ebook: PDF, EPUB, Kindle, Audio, HTML and MOBI
🗸 Supported Devices: Android, iOS, MacOS, PC and Amazon Kindle

What do I get?

✓ Read as many eBooks you want!
✓ Secure Scanned. No Virus Detected
✓ Thousands of eBooks to choose from - Hottest new releases
✓ Click it and Read it! - no waiting to read eBooks, it's instant!
✓ Keep reading your favorite eBooks over and over!
✓ It works anywhere in the world!
✓ No late fees or fixed contracts - cancel anytime!

Readers' opinions about The Devil's Element: Phosphorus and a World Out of Balance by Dan Egan

This is a book I'll cherish and recommend to everyone. It touched my soul and made me reflect on life's profound mysteries.

The author's ability to evoke a wide range of emotions through their words is truly remarkable. I felt like I was on an emotional rollercoaster throughout the entire book.

The themes of resilience and hope resonated deeply with me. This book taught me valuable life lessons that I'll carry with me for years to come.

More by Dan Egan

Related eBook The Devil's Element: Phosphorus and a World Out of Balance

The Science Book by DK Science by Patricia Fara Lucifer's Legacy by Frank Close The Decline of the West by Oswald Spengler The Structure of Scientific Revolutions by Thomas S. Kuhn Science Fictions by Stuart Ritchie The Mission by David W. Brown The Great Fossil Enigma by Simon J. Knell The Einsteinian Revolution by Jürgen Renn & Hanoch Gutfreund Los pilares de la ciencia by Miguel Artola & José Manuel Sánchez Ron The Information by James Gleick Rabid by Bill Wasik & Monica Murphy The Ascent Of Man by Jacob Bronowski The Parrot and the Igloo: Climate and the Science of Denial by David Lipsky The Jewel House by Deborah E. Harkness Faraday, Maxwell, and the Electromagnetic Field by Nancy Forbes & Basil Mahon The Blind Spot by Adam Frank, Marcelo Gleiser & Evan Thompson Science under Fire by Andrew Jewett In Sputnik’s Shadow by Zuoyue Wang How Life Works by Philip Ball Losing Earth by Nathaniel Rich Darwin's Black Box by Michael J. Behe A Scheme of Heaven: The History of Astrology and the Search for our Destiny in Data by Alexander Boxer Stargazers and Gravediggers by Immanuel Velikovsky Tunnel Visions by Michael Riordan, Lilian Hoddeson & Arienne W. Kolb The Ghost Map by Steven Johnson The Disappearing Spoon by Sam Kean A Journey Through Care of Magical Creatures by Pottermore Publishing Toms River by Dan Fagin Bad Science by Ben Goldacre To Explain the World by Steven Weinberg The Map That Changed the World by Simon Winchester Napoleon's Buttons by Penny Le Couteur & Jay Burreson Origin by Jennifer Raff The Story of More by Hope Jahren Panic in Level 4 by Richard Preston The Discoverers by Daniel J. Boorstin Stairway To Heaven by Richard Cole The Age of Wonder by Richard Holmes The Knife Man by Wendy Moore The Birth of the Pill: How Four Crusaders Reinvented Sex and Launched a Revolution by Jonathan Eig The Invention of Air by Steven Johnson Lost in Math by Sabine Hossenfelder Accidental Medical Discoveries by Robert W. Winters The Glass Universe by Dava Sobel Day the Universe Changed by James Burke American Eden: David Hosack, Botany, and Medicine in the Garden of the Early Republic by Victoria Johnson The Moral Arc by Michael Shermer Caesar's Last Breath by Sam Kean Galileo's Middle Finger by Alice Dreger