The competing images displayed on the covers of this two-volume set capture the essence of the text: one marcher, sporting a cowboy hat, protests the Kyoto protocols limiting emissions of greenhouse gases; another, dressed as a polar bear, urges actions to reduce global warming. Behind both looms the United States capitol. The subject of the environment has been approached from so many disparate angles that making sense of it becomes a daunting challenge. This comprehensive reference set offers an academic resource accessible to high school students, addressing a broad spectrum of issues related to the environment and exploring the environmental controversies facing society today. The categories included within the volumes are interrelated by various themes, such as Children and Environmental Controversies, Natural Disasters and Risks from the Environment. The themes-- presented in a guide to related topics in both books-- are further interrelated with an ecological perspective; Global Environmental Controversies, for example, examines climate change, ecotourism and the environment and war, among other topics. The entries discuss environmental controversies from a current context as well as looking at possible future threats, such as impairment to efforts for sustainability. Each entry identifies the issue involved, presents a discussion from various points of view, explains some of the cultural, political and social dimensions of the conflict and describes any related public policies. Sidebars take a closer look at some of the battleground issues: “Hiking on Ayers Rock, Australia,” for example, points out that while the site has been designated as a sacred, ancestral site of the indigenous Anangu people, 400,000 tourists continue to visit the park annually; many people chose to climb the rock despite the Anagus’ wishes, damaging cultural traditions and a delicate infrastructure. The list of cross-references and the short bibliographies that conclude each entry are suited for student research, while the Web resources afford access to the current status of the issue involved, especially important considering the dynamic nature of environmental controversies. Three appendices conclude the second volume: a list of environmental database programs, applications and portal Web sites; an index of chemicals and a glossary of environmental terms. The second volume also includes a general bibliography and an index. Highly recommended for high school and public libraries.