tropical desert consists of barren land over which rainfall is too
limited to support vegetation. So why are such desolate and hostile
places, like deserts, important to study?
Firstly, desert studies help us predict possible future changes
to the environment and how to avoid damaging it. In his book The
Desert of Southeast Arabia, Ken Glennie takes us on a journey back
in time to when Arabia was a much greener place, and he explains
how global climate made it so barren.
Secondly, in many parts of the world, such as Oman, Saudi Arabia,
Europe’s North Sea and the United States, hydrocarbons are
found in ancient dune sand reservoirs. Can we unravel the depositional
and stratigraphical intricacies of these ancient gas- and oil-bearing
reservoirs by studying modern deserts? Ken pioneered the answer
to this question with his studies of both modern deserts and the
reservoirs of the Permian Rotliegend Red Beds of northwest Europe.
Ken started writing this book 10 years ago for students; this is
one reason for the extensive Glossary at the back. After many modifications
and revisions, his book now provides a different perspective to
a well-known topic. Its simplicity, detailed descriptions and illustrations
will undoubtedly appeal to students, desert travelers and scientists.
Of great value, especially when used in conjunction with studies
on the ground, are the satellite images (Landsat) seen here in spectacular
colour. None of these images, however, can replace seeing the desert
rocks and sediments first hand. In this book, Ken shares his vast
knowledge of the Arabian Desert, and exquisite collection of photos
taken on the ground and from the air.
Hardbound, 215 pages, over 200 colored illustrations, photos and