The Weather Makers is both an urgent warning and a call to arms, outlining the history of climate change, how it will unfold over the next century, and what we can do to prevent a cataclysmic future. Along with a history of climate change, Tim Flannery offers specific suggestions for action for both lawmakers and individuals.
Sometime this century the day will arrive when the human influence on the climate will overwhelm all other natural factors. Over the past decade, the world has seen the most powerful El Niño ever recorded, the most devastating hurricane in two hundred years, the hottest European summer on record, and one of the worst storm seasons ever experienced in Florida. With one out of every five living things on this planet committed to extinction by the levels of greenhouse gases that will accumulate in the next few decades, we are reaching a global climatic tipping point. The Weather Makers is both an urgent warning and a call to arms, outlining the history of climate change, how it will unfold over the next century, and what we can do to prevent a cataclysmic future. Along with a riveting history of climate change, Tim Flannery offers specific suggestions for action for both lawmakers and individuals, from investing in renewable power sources like wind, solar, and geothermal energy, to offering an action plan with steps each and every one of us can take right now to reduce deadly CO2 emissions by as much as 70 percent.
THE SLOW AWAKENING
In 1981, when I was in my midtwenties, I climbed Mt. Albert Edward, one of the highest peaks on the verdant island of New Guinea. Although only seventy-four miles from Papua New Guineas national capital, Port Moresby, the region around Mt. Albert Edward is so rugged that the last significant biological work conducted there was by an expedition from the American Museum of Natural History in the early 1930s.
The bronzed grasslands were a stark contrast to the green jungle all around, and among the tussocks grew groves of tree ferns, whose lacy fronds waved above my head. Wallaby tracks threaded from the forest edge to the herbfields that flourished in damp hollows, and the scratchings and burrows of yardlong rats and the traces where long-beaked echidnas had probed for worms were everywhere. Many of these creatures, I later discovered, were unique to such alpine regions.
Downslope, the tussock grassland ended abruptly at a stunted, mossy forest. A single ...
Realistic Ways to Reduce Global Warming
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