Friday, December 22, 2006

Yes, the world is headed for destruction

What better way to spread the holiday cheer than reading about global warming? I just finished Field Notes from a Catastrophe and man was it good. The author Elizabeth Kolbert, is a New Yorker writer, and like similar authors she can communicate ideas and arguments in clear, concise and meaningful terms. Some may find the book too short and more focused on outcomes than causes, but I found that to helpful to me. She made crystal clear why disappearing species is a problem. Yes it is sad that kids will see fewer frogs, but more importantly what effect will that have on things like pests, diseases, and crops? As she notes, we are changing the biosphere and the biosphere is what keeps us alive.

I personally found this a more engaging read than the Weather Makers, a book on the same topic. If you want (much) greater scientific detail, that book is more your speed. I hesitate to make such statements, but this is a topic that informed people should understand.

I guess I picked the wrong week to give up super high test egg nog.


Brack said...

A few observations:

1. Afrika Bambaataa + Johnny Rotten = right on!

2. This post should have been devoted to "Dust" by Charles Pelligrino and "The Weather Channel" by Frank Batten (see p. 174 for "Ritter, Al").


Tripp said...

Nicely linked Brack. Dust is my favorite end of the world book. So under-rated.

And of course any props to my pa are well received.

lisa_emily said...

Damn! You read both Fieldnotes.... and Weathermakers. I feel like such a slouch. Although I read the new yorkers articles from which the book is based. So many books!!!!!!!!

Tripp said...

Well if you read the New Yorker articles, I think you can count that one as a read. Most of those New Yorker expansion books don't add THAT much.