The Alps and our Planet
- This book is essential reading for teachers and students, but also for anyone who loves, walks or stays in mountain regions and who does not yet know the fascinating story of the rocks and landscapes that lies beneath their feet. Arthur Fischer
Once upon a time, long, long ago, the Earth comprised one huge continent, Pangea, that was washed by a single vast ocean. The first dinosaurs walked in that distant morning, 250 million years ago; and it was then that the geological history of the Alps can be said to have begun. Theirs is an extraordinary story, long, rich and complex. Yet though complex, it is illuminated for us by another fascinating history, that of the still unfolding dynamic of the planet itself.
This book invites any reader curious about our planet to embark on an immense journey through time and space. The planet’s saga is recorded in its own prodigious memory; inscribed in its very rocks and landscapes. The mountains of the world - which once were deserts, savannahs, tropical rain forests, sea shores or ocean depths - are the offspring of the vast, slow drifting of oceans and continents.
The long treck of the continents and oceans
The break-up of Pangaea
The Tethyan see and her oceanic sisters
Subduction, or the foundering of the oceans
Collision: a slow, deep upheaval
Humanity, Glaciers and the Alps today
Diagrammatic scenario of Alpine formation in five stages