Principles of Planetary Biology

A selection of chapters from my book

In 1998, I wrote a text book on the topic of "planetary biology." The point of the book was to evaluate life on Earth in the context of the whole planet.

This effort was very enlightening for me as it forced me to move fluidly between points of knowledge in many different scientific fields. As a result, I gained a much broader and more flexible understanding of life, the universe and everything.

Although I used this text for several years with my classes at Fullerton College, I eventually wrote another, more general environmental text -- which I am currently using.

Several people have asked me to make these chapters available again. I am happy to comply.

It has been over 10 years since I last touched these chapters, so they may seem a bit out of date. I haven't kept after them. Nonetheless, I hope that you find some surprising value in there somewhere.


Introducing Planetary Biology Theory

The Basic Structure of Planetary Biology Theory

The Big Planetary Biology Model

A Simplified Block Flow Diagram of the Planetary Biology Model

The Philosophy of Science

The Practice of Science

Astronomical Circumstances

The Origin of Life on Earth


The Historical Development of the Idea of Evolution

Population Genetics and Random Evolution

Non-Random Evolution

Evolution Theory Itself Evolves

Molecular Adaptations

Cellular Adaptations

Environmental Consequences of Life's Abundance