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Publication Detail
Archaeological assessment reveals Earth’s early transformation through land use
  • Publication Type:
    Journal article
  • Publication Sub Type:
    Article
  • Authors:
    Stephens L, Fuller D, Boivin N, Rick T, Gauthier N, Kay A, Marwick B, Geralda C, Armstrong D, Barton CM, Denham T, Douglass K, Driver J, Janz L, Roberts P, Rogers JD, Thakar H, Altaweel M, Johnson AL, Sampietro Vattuone MM, Aldenderfer M, Archila S, Artioli G, Bale MT, Beach T, Borrell F, Braje T, Buckland PI, Jiménez Cano NG, Capriles JM, Diez Castillo A, Çilingiroğlu Ç, Negus Cleary M, Conolly J, Coutros PR, Covey RA, Cremaschi M, Crowther A, Der L, di Lernia S, Doershuk JF, Doolittle WE, Edwards KJ, Erlandson JM, Evans D, Fairbairn A, Faulkner P, Feinman G, Fernandes R, Fitzpatrick SM, Fyfe R, Garcea E, Goldstein S, Goodman RC, Dalpoim Guedes J, Herrmann J, Hiscock P, Hommel P, Horsburgh KA, Hritz C, Ives JW, Junno A, Kahn JG, Kaufman B, Kearns C, Kidder TR, Lanoë F, Lawrence D, Lee G-A, Levin MJ, Lindskoug HB, López-Sáez JA, Macrae S, Marchant R, Marston JM, McClure S, McCoy MD, Miller AV, Morrison M, Motuzaite Matuzeviciute G, Müller J, Nayak A, Noerwidi S, Peres TM, Peterson CE, Proctor L, Randall AR, Renette S, Robbins Schug G, Ryzewski K, Saini R, Scheinsohn V, Schmidt P, Sebillaud P, Seitsonen O, Simpson IA, Sołtysiak A, Speakman RJ, Spengler RN, Steffen ML, Storozum MJ, Strickland KM, Thompson J, Thurston TL, Ulm S, Ustunkaya MC, Welker MH, West C, Williams PR, Wright DK, Wright N, Zahir M, Zerboni A, Beaudoin E, Munevar Garcia S, Powell J, Thornton A, Kaplan JO, Gaillard M-J, Klein Goldewijk K, Ellis E
  • Publisher:
    American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)
  • Publication date:
    30/08/2019
  • Pagination:
    897, 902
  • Journal:
    Science
  • Volume:
    365
  • Issue:
    6456
  • Status:
    Published
  • Print ISSN:
    0036-8075
  • Language:
    en
Abstract
Environmentally transformative human use of land accelerated with the emergence of agriculture, but the extent, trajectory, and implications of these early changes are not well understood. An empirical global assessment of land use from 10,000 years before the present (yr B.P.) to 1850 CE reveals a planet largely transformed by hunter-gatherers, farmers, and pastoralists by 3000 years ago, considerably earlier than the dates in the land-use reconstructions commonly used by Earth scientists. Synthesis of knowledge contributed by more than 250 archaeologists highlighted gaps in archaeological expertise and data quality, which peaked for 2000 yr B.P. and in traditionally studied and wealthier regions. Archaeological reconstruction of global land-use history illuminates the deep roots of Earth’s transformation and challenges the emerging Anthropocene paradigm that large-scale anthropogenic global environmental change is mostly a recent phenomenon.
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Author
Institute of Archaeology Gordon Square
University College London - Gower Street - London - WC1E 6BT Tel:+44 (0)20 7679 2000

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