Tim Flannery: The Weather MakersHow Man is Changing the Climate and What it Means for Life on Earth



characters The Weather MakersHow Man is Changing the Climate and What it Means for Life on Earth

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Heatwaves hurricanes flooding drought extinction No one can accuse Tim Flannery of understating the effects of global warming And there s no doubting his passion for the subject Once sceptical about climate change he s now a fully paid up member of the global warming warning brigade His chapter headings alone Peril at the Poles The Carbon Dictatorship Boiling the Abyss signal that he s nailed his colours to the mast And those colours are all greenNot so ong ago climate change was confined to the inner reaches of scientific journals Now it s front page news Hardly a day passes without another instance of wild weather being blamed on global warming Flannery believes the changes we ve seen in weather patterns seasons biodiversity and above all rising global temperatures have a single man made cause Fossil fuelled industrial development is the villain of the piece from coal fired power stations to the infernal combustion engine So busy have we been in pillaging the Earth s resources that it s only when the planet started fighting back that we woke up to the terrible conseuencesOf course he s aware that not all agree with this argument and so he sets out to support it with an avalanche of evidence At times the reader risks being engulfed by statistics and some of the scientific vocabulary reuires both a deep breath and a running jump Even so Flannery s genuine concern for all forms of Tame an Older Man (Harlequin American Romance, life on the planet shines throughBut he has to tread carefully Scary talk about runaway warming mayead his readers to conclude that it s too Treacherous Is the Night (Verity Kent, late to do anything Or as Irving Berlin didn t write there may be trouble ahead butet s face the music and turn up the heating Flannery insists the problem is still soluble but tackling it will take action by every government every business and every gas guzzling trash tipping pollution pumping one of usAfter braving 200 pages of bleak prognostications it s a relief to reach an environmental success story Flannery calls the 1987 Montreal Protocol the world s first victory over a global pollution problem and without it A Miracle, A Universe life on Earth would have been in deep trouble A hole in the planet s ozoneayer risked exposing us to dangerous ultra violet rays from the sun The Montreal agreement banned the fluorocarbons that were eating away at this ayer and there are now hopeful signs that the hole is healingDespite this good news Flannery insists prevention is always better than cure a view that s reinforced when turning his fire on the energy sector Just as the tobacco industry spent many decades in denial about the ink between smoking and Aguecheeks Beef, Belchs Hiccup, and Other Gastronomic Interjections lung cancer he says energy companies have been similarly sluggish in facing up to the impact of fossil fuels on the environment But while he s scathing about the automobile Flannery appears resigned to the increasing volume of air traffic and believes aircraft will continue to spew carbon into the atmosphereong after other forms of transport have gone greenAt one point in this book Flannery speculates that researchers investigating the impact of climate change on mountain regions may have given up because it was all too depressing It s an odd observation but if true who could blame them Global warming may be a hot topic but talk of imminent catastrophe is enough to send anyone running for the prozac Yet far from being alarmist or defeatist Flannery is a convincing advocate of the need for urgent action Perhaps if enough of us heed his warning a Tim Flannery of the future might be able to write a book telling the story of how we saved the planet This book is excellent and terrifying Tim Flannery is a working Australian scientist mammologist paleontologist not a journalist who Black Metropolis, Vol. 2 lays out the history and science of climate changeikely scenarios for the future the politics of climate change both good and bad and at the very end provides a manifesto for ways to reduce our carbon output individually The species he studies have been deeply impacted by climate changes to date which means that global warming is not just something he decided to write a book about but has been interested in for years and that depth of interest is evident in the depth of evidence in the bookWhen I think of climate change I think of many things but most of them are in the past 10 years the hurricane season of 2005 the 8 of the 10 warmest years of the millennium are in the past decade ice shelf breakups. 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 Nio 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.

In the polar regions and so on Flannery cites evidence that we ve been seeing impacts for much By Words Alone longer in human terms ranging from the drying of the Sahel starting in the 1960 s the extinction of frogs and other amphibians in the 1980 s and the scary part is that human greenhouse gas emissions have risen dramatically since those impacts startedSo as not to make the book a complete downer Flannery finishes with both a hopeful note the story of the Montreal Protocol to ban CFCs which caused the ozone hole and how that seemed so hopeless in the early 1980 s but actually came about and is now having a positive impact and an actionist for Excellent book about the hows whys and what ifs of climate change Some of the data is a ittle outdated at this point but it still provides a solid argument with great supporting evidence The science in this book is accessible to a wide variety of readers including both those new to the concept of climate change and those who are well versed in the topic This book should be considered a climate change classic it excellently elaborate the science behind the climate regulating functions of the Earth s atmosphere the delicate balance of it and how human s thirst for growth is threatening to destroy that balance with catastrophic conseuences The book covers many facets of the issue from the science to the politics which makes it a one stop shop for all things climate change Flannery s writing is beautiful and ucid it is infused with a romanticism for all things nature similarly to what one would find in the works of eighteenth century botanists and biologists he uotes a Enduring Truths lot of Wallace His prose has aiterary uality to it particularly as he ascribed the atmosphere as The Great Aerial Ocean and the Myst life blood of Earth All this makes for a great page turner unexpected for a book packed with so much scientific details Considering that this has been published in 2005 it is pretty ahead in voicing the concernsater adopted by the The Chinese Love Pavilion likes of the IPCC report in 2007 and the Stern review All that delivered in bits and chunks that are digestible to the average reader Some of the details are outright fascinating the manyayers of the atmosphere the kinetic uality of its interaction with all The Peloponnesian War living being on earth and the delicate balance at which its climate regulating functions hinges Flannery also managed to deconstruct the cliches surrounding climate change and has brilliantly explained the sources of uncertainty in climate modeling Having said that it does have some clear pitfalls Its ambitious scope makes it difficult for Flannery to cover the aspects outside his strength as a scientist such as the economics and politics of it in great depth In fact towards the end of the book I felt there was aot of redundancy regarding his take on the global politics of emission reduction efforts and particularly his ideas of a post Kyoto Protocol deal The alarmist tone to the Dolphin Confidential last few chapters can also be off putting Flannery himself conceded to the uncertainty of the science yet he is trapped into heralding various catastrophic projections of 2050 as the world s certain future The book really dragged towards the end because of the author repeatedly stopped in his tracks to remind readers that time is running out and that action needs to be taken Even a believerike me does not respond too well on too much climate crusading Finally a minor but annoying bit has to be the finality with which he starts his Mairis Mermaid last few chapters which really makes it feelike the book was never going to end Chapters titled with Last Steps on the Stairway to Heaven The Last Act of God Time s Up made it seem ike I had arrived at the end of the book yet when upon finishing them I was dismayed to find that there were chapters to go through what another chapter But still this book comes recommended to anyone who wants to get a better grasp at the issue Even in the current flood of information on climate change any reader would find the book highly insightful as well as enjoyable Although the ast thing most people need is another downer book about how the climate is spiraling out of control towards disaster this book manages to deliver science than opinion and actually offers some reasonable tips on how we can still make a difference if we take the right steps As someone who studies climate policy in grad school I found The Weather Mak. Every five The Shadow of Your Smile living things on this planet committed to extinction by theevels 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

Ers to be by far the most comprehensive book I ve read on climate change In a brisk 300 pages Tim Flannery spans the ecology of climate change and its devastating effects on biodiversity its geological context and how this is different than previous ages the atmospheric models that inform our understanding of its impacts the history of international climate negotiations and the pros and cons of alternatives to fossil fuels This impressive scope has both positive and negative aspects On the one hand I can t think of a better single book for someone to uickly get up to speed on climate change Flannery truly tells a story with each chapter of the book and manages to combine engaging writing with in depth detail in many sections On the other hand such a broad range in a short 300 pages is bound to not cover all subjects in eual depth While Flannery provides a The Three Worlds lot of rich detail on how climate change is affecting both terrestrial and marineife he is an ecologist by training in the first 100 150 pages his sections on energy technologies and policy are fairly thin For example he introduces and summarily dismisses carbon capture and storage as one option to reduce emissions in all of 2 pages regardless of your opinion on the technology it surely merits a closer In the Belly look However this book can ateast provide some overall big picture context to help situate where specific news articles or books fitOverall this was a very informative book and fun to read Highly recommended for anyone who wishes to earn about climate change and the imperative to act now A very compelling and in depth narration about the climate crisis that we are currently facing Even though it is uite outdated He wrote this in 2004 and anyone reading it today who follows climate science closely would possess much greater knowledge on the topic A ton of discoveries and revelations have been made since then Nevertheless it does provide a wealth of information that is rooted at the very beginning of the climate crisis and t Humanity is at or has already passed an historical crossroads By the end of the 21st century possibly by the middle of it enormous changes in the earth s climate and ecosystems will have precipitated eually momentous changes in human society our economic systems and in civilization itselfMy personal ist of writers who have made significant contributions to the scientific environmental and societal aspects of what we are heading for include people such as Lester R Brown Bill McKibben Richard Heinberg Fred Pearce Elizabeth Kolbert and John Michael GreerOf course the Australian Tim Flannery is also on this ist Like Bill McKibben Flannery s writings span a wide range of subjects His Wiki article describes him as a mammalogist palaeontologist environmentalist and global warming activist and notes that he was named the 2007 Australian of the YearThe Weather Makers is one of Flannery s most influential books and although the story of climate change is moving fast the book at seven years of age is probably still worth reading There is a great breadth of material covered from descriptions of the earth s atmosphere and ecosystems to the physicalchemical mechanics of greenhouse gases climate modelling and the sorts of outcomes that can be imagined The index is pretty good and the notes to each of the 35 chapters should allow an interested reader to track down up to date data and research on most of the topicsIn fact as I ve been ooking at it in writing this review it occurs to me that perhaps I should reread parts of it If Land like most people you have been drifting along vaguely aware that there might be something called global warming and that it might have some not so good conseuences but you haven t really taken the time to work out how serious it is and whether or not it is something that you could or should do something about then do yourself the rest of us and the animals and plants with which we share the world a favor and read this book It is short easy to understand based on personal experience and solid research and is guaranteed to shock you out of your slumbering complacency if you are one of those aforementioned driftersThe Weather Makers isn t perfect but it is effective and that for most potential readers is important Once aware awake and concerned then you can find other books that marshal the scientific evidence scary and important reading. Ataclysmic future Along with a riveting history of climate change Tim Flannery offers specific suggestions for action for bothawmakers and individuals from investing in renewable power sources ike 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.

Tim Flannery is one of Australia's leading thinkers and writersAn internationally acclaimed scientist explorer and conservationist he has published than 130 peer reviewed scientific papers and many books His books include the landmark works The Future Eaters and The Weather Makers which has been translated into than 20 languages and in 2006 won the NSW Premiers Literary Prizes for B