Almost daily, it seems, scientists' prognoses about the state of our planet grow evermore dire.
Take climate change, for example. Just last week, a new study suggested that sea levels could rise by up to one-and-a-half metres by the end of this century, with catastrophic impacts for low-lying countries.
This is more than three times as high as the most pessimistic projections of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
Yet some climatologists are suggesting that even this is a huge under-estimate of the likely extent of sea level rise. In the face of mounting evidence of profound environmental challenges, the insistence that we can tackle these by embracing a few simple and painless changes - switching to low-energy light bulbs or buying a hybrid car - feels increasingly unrealistic. More >>>