Peter K. Haff

Peter K. Haff

Professor Emeritus

The neoenvironment is the total environment in which we live. It is the sum of the natural, human, and technological systems and processes that surround us. It includes for example forest ecosystems, animals and machines, nanotechnology, the internet, highways, medical systems, power grids, human populations, political parties, governments and bureaucracies, robots and religions and their interactions with each other. In an age in which both the level and acceleration of technology are high, understanding and living with our "environment" can only mean understanding and living with the neoenvironment. Technology cannot be factored out of the neoenvironment leaving only natural processes. The neoenvironment must be understood as a whole. There are many consequences for the future of human-well being that flow from the emergence of the neoenvironment and my research examines some of them.

 

Appointments and Affiliations

  • Professor Emeritus
  • Faculty Network Member of The Energy Initiative

Contact Information

  • Office Location: 321B Old Chem Bldg, Durham, NC 27708
  • Office Phone: (919) 684-5902
  • Email Address: haff@duke.edu

Education

  • Ph.D. University of Virginia, 1970
  • B.A. Harvard University, 1966

Specialties

Geophysics

Courses Taught

  • ENVIRON 899: Master's Project
  • EOS 393: Research Independent Study
  • EOS 791: Independent Study

In the News

Representative Publications

  • Zalasiewicz, J; N.Waters, C; P. Wolfe, A; D. Barnosky, A; Cearreta, A; Edgeworth, M; C. Ellis, E; J. Fairchild, I; M. Gradstein, F; Grinevald, J; Haff, P; J. Head, M; A. Ivar do Sul, J; Jeandel, C; Leinfelder, R; R. McNeill, J; Oreskes, N; Poirier, C; Revkin, A; deB. Richter, D; Steffen, W; Summerhayes, C; P. M. Syvitski, J; Vidas, D; Wagreich, M; Wing, S; Williams, M, Making the case for a formal Anthropocene Epoch: an analysis of ongoing critiques, Newsletters on Stratigraphy (2017) [10.1127/nos/2017/0385] [abs].
  • Haff, PK, Purpose in the Anthropocene: Dynamical role and physical basis, Anthropocene, vol 16 (2016), pp. 54-60 [10.1016/j.ancene.2016.07.002] [abs].
  • Williams, M; Zalasiewicz, J; Waters, CN; Edgeworth, M; Bennett, C; Barnosky, AD; Ellis, EC; Ellis, MA; Cearreta, A; Haff, PK; Ivar do Sul, JA; Leinfelder, R; McNeill, JR; Odada, E; Oreskes, N; Revkin, A; Richter, DD; Steffen, W; Summerhayes, C; Syvitski, JP; Vidas, D; Wagreich, M; Wing, SL; Wolfe, AP; Zhisheng, A, The Anthropocene: a conspicuous stratigraphical signal of anthropogenic changes in production and consumption across the biosphere, Earth's Future, vol 4 no. 3 (2016), pp. 34-53 [10.1002/2015EF000339] [abs].
  • Williams, M; Zalasiewicz, J; Haff, P; Schwa¬†gerl, C; Barnosky, AD; Ellis, EC, The Anthropocene biosphere, Anthropocene Review, vol 2 no. 3 (2015), pp. 196-219 [10.1177/2053019615591020] [abs].
  • Zalasiewicz, J; Waters, CN; Williams, M; Barnosky, AD; Cearreta, A; Crutzen, P; Ellis, E; Ellis, MA; Fairchild, IJ; Grinevald, J; Haff, PK; Hajdas, I; Leinfelder, R; McNeill, J; Odada, EO; Poirier, C; Richter, D; Steffen, W; Summerhayes, C; Syvitski, JPM; Vidas, D; Wagreich, M; Wing, SL; Wolfe, AP; An, Z; Oreskes, N, When did the Anthropocene begin? A mid-twentieth century boundary level is stratigraphically optimal, Quaternary International, vol 383 (2015), pp. 196-203 [10.1016/j.quaint.2014.11.045] [abs].