2023 Midwest Book Awards in Nonfiction - Nature, winner
In the last 200 years, Iowa’s prairies and other wildlands have been transformed into vast agricultural fields. This massive conversion has provided us with food, fiber, and fuel in abundance. But it has also robbed Iowa’s land of its native resilience and created the environmental problems that today challenge our everyday lives: polluted waters, increasing floods, loss and degradation of rich prairie topsoil, compromised natural systems, and now climate change.
In a straightforward, friendly style, Iowa’s premier scientists and experts consider what has happened to our land and outline viable solutions that benefit agriculture as well as the state’s human and wild residents.
About the Author
Cornelia F. Mutel is author of The Emerald Horizon: The History of Nature in Iowa (Iowa, 2008) and A Sugar Creek Chronicle: Observing Climate Change from a Midwestern Woodland (Iowa, 2016). She is the former senior science writer at IIHR–Hydroscience & Engineering at the University of Iowa College of Engineering. Mutel lives in Iowa City, Iowa.
“As a lifelong Iowan, this tapestry of science, history, and personal stories moved me to think about our changing climate and my own actions. While many of our current circumstances seem dire, Connie and the amazing team of contributors gave me hope by shining a bright light on the path forward.”—Joe McGovern, president, Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation
“A must read for all Iowans.”—Daryl Smith, former director, Tallgrass Prairie Center
“This dynamic history of Iowa’s water, soil, and air, paired with specific ideas for preserving and protecting our natural resources, is an excellent text for teachers and students studying environmental issues.”—Barbara Ehlers, Upper Iowa University
“Tending Iowa’s Land is inspiring, as it is filled with examples of Iowans working to restore native plants, animals, and resources. May a host of other landowners join them—and the impressive group of academics and other professionals in this book—in leading our way to a resilient, regenerative future.”—Teresa Opheim, director, Climate Land Leaders