Celebrating Earth Day: Preserving Iraq’s Marshes 

As we approach Earth Day, on 22 April, a day dedicated to environmental consciousness and action, it is crucial to reflect on humanity’s commitment to nurturing and preserving our planet’s natural world. 

AUC Press chooses to shine a spotlight on The Ghosts of Iraq’s Marshes, a compelling account of the devastation and subsequent resurrection of Iraq’s southern marshes, an environmental treasure of the Middle East, now a UNESCO World Heritage protected site. This book paints a vivid picture of the struggle to conserve Iraq’s marshes, which are among the world’s most unique and endangered ecosystems. Often referred to as the “Garden of Eden” or the “Cradle of Civilization,” these marshes serve as habitats for countless species of flora and fauna. Yet they have faced severe threats due to decades of environmental degradation and political turmoil.

The Ghosts of Iraq’s Marshes follows the life of Jassim al-Asadi, an irrigation engineer who dedicated his life to the reflooding and restoration of the Marshes. He eventually contributed to the Marshes being declared a UNESCO World Heritage site. 

Learn more about the preservation of Iraq’s marshes through The Ghosts of Iraq’s Marshes: A History of Conflict, Tragedy, and Restoration by Steve Lonergan, and Jassim Al-Asadi.

Read the Q&A with Steve Lonergan here.

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