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The Thirsty Earth

The meeting of 33 of the world’s rivers in a book to understand the challenges linked to water.

“The Thirsty Earth. Thirst is a call, the most alarming call since the most vital of all. Streams and rivers have been able to heed this call. By offering the water demanded, far more than wells could give. For how long will they be able to continue this most essential mission?”.

These are the words with which Erik Orsenna opens his latest book The Thirsty Earth, co-written with the members of the association Initiatives for the Future of Great Rivers (IFGR).

After The Future of Water (2008), now comes a great journey into the realm of rivers. Thirty-three rivers of the world, from the Amazon to the little Trieux (north Brittany), discovered and studied in the framework of IFGR’s activities. Accounts of travels and expert analyses are offered to readers.
Geography – with the wonderful maps of Delphine Papin, of the cartographic department of the newspaper Le Monde – is combined with history, geopolitics, and culture since rivers make up a universe in which the many challenges of the modern world intersect and demonstrate the relationship between humankind and nature. An account that is always similar but each time singular: the theatre of life.

This brief essay on globalisation was published by Fayard in September 2022.


Some French Interviews of Erik Orsenna, about the book :

  • France Inter, interview par Sonia Devillers dans la Matinale 7h-9h30 – le 26 septembre 2022
  • France Culture, émission Bienvenue au Book Club – Livres à la carte avec Erik Orsenna et Christian Grataloup – le 21 novembre 2022
  • Le Monde, chronique d’Alain Frachon : “COP27 : Le dernier livre d’Erik Orsenna, “La Terre a soif”, est à adresser d’urgence aux ministres” – le 17 novembre 2022
  • Public Sénat, émission Bonjour chez vous avec Erik Orsenna en invité : « Comment peut-on dire que l’on va produire moins avec 1 milliard de personnes qui ne mangent pas à leur faim ?” – le 18 novembre 2022
  • Midi Libre, interview croisée de Carole Delga, présidente de la Région Occitanie et d’Erik Orsenna, à l’occasion d’une conférence publique “La Terre a soif : quelles solutions de gestion de l’eau en France et dans le monde?” – le 13 novembre 2022

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