William Ophuls spent eight years in the U. S. Foreign Service, serving in Washington, Abidjan, and Tokyo, before receiving a PhD in political science from Yale University in 1973. In 1977, he published *Ecology and the Politics of Scarcity*. It won two prizes and was instrumental in establishing the field of environmental politics. After teaching briefly at Northwestern University, he became an independent scholar and author. He has since published three books on the ecological, social, and political challenges confronting modern industrial civilization. When not at his writing desk, he spends his time rambling in nature, either in his native California or in the mountains of Europe.