First Chapter. ‘Field Notes From a Catastrophe’. By ELIZABETH KOLBERT MARCH 12, Continue reading the main story Share This Page. Continue. Field Notes from a Catastrophe. by Elizabeth Kolbert. Bloomsbury £ The Inuit people of Banks Island have no word to describe what we. In Field Notes From a Catastrophe, Elizabeth Kolbert presents incontrovertible evidence that global warming is a clear and present danger.

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Elizabeth Kolbert’s Field Notes From a Catastrophe gives climate change a human face

The first part of book addresses how nature is affected by global climate change. Kolbert gives even people with whom she disagrees ample opportunity to explain themselves, then deftly dissects their arguments.

For the sake of the planet, I hope that audience, especially in America, is enormous — and that it includes all the political wonks who loved her first book so much. Lynne Newell I think a required reading list for our lawmakers would be an excellent thing.

Arrhenius became curious kollbert the effects of carbon dioxide on global temperatures. She describes projects of scientists aboard the ice-breaker Der Groseilliers to research ice floes in the Arctic Ocean.

Field Notes from a Catastrophe – Wikipedia

Oct 20, Lisa rated it it was amazing. Long known for her insightful and thought-provoking political journalism, author Elizabeth Kolbert now tackles the controversial and increasingly urgent subject of global warming. All these tiny signs, brought to life in remarkable detail, point to a coming catastrophe.

Between assessments of the present and forecasts for the future, Kolbert also never pauses to explain exactly why this is a problem. Kolbert travels around the world where climate change is affecting the notea in significant ways.

He calculated how the earth’s temperature would be affected by changing carbon dioxide levels. Arrhenius began painstakingly working out the effects of carbon dioxide CO2 on global temperatures. The American way of life — which demands personal cars, air conditioning, everyday wastefulness, and where our wonderful model of economic development translates into planned obsolescence, poverty, and a society where the average person consumes five times the energy of the global average person — will certainly have to go.


She contends that if this philosophy is not reversed, the Earth will continue to spiral out of control. I was quite impressed by the wide variety of evidence that Kolbert draws from; it is very rare that so many different branches of science from physics to glaciology are able to comment on one very specific subject–let alone agree on that subject. First, Kolbert explains that the climate has firld affected human civilizations in the past, even causing some civilizations to end.

Field Notes from a Catastrophe

Reading this book set in that period reminds us again where politicians have let us down. The wide variety of sources used demonstrate the enormous amount of effort she made in order for this book to serve as scientific research that should not go unread.

I think one of the most startling aspects of this book, for me, was learning that the study of climate change as it relates to the burning of fossil fuels actually dates back to the 19th century. It would certainly have made a perfect ending to her book.

Observer review: Field Notes From a Catastrophe by Elizabeth Kolbert | Books | The Guardian

The effects of global rlizabeth, she argues, can already be felt on every continent, in every country, by plants and animals alike. It’s well written, with numerous interesting details, such as the problems read: At the core, all of the important scientists in the field agree that the warming means that the planet is on the edge of a major climate change.

Kolbert starts with the history of the scientists who matter most in the study of the warming of the planet. Elixabeth makes a thorough case for why stored carbon in permafrost, the ice-albedo feedback loop, and other things will make frrom effects of global warming far more irregular and sudden than we appreciate.

In fact, I wish I kolbsrt read it first – not because it is the better of the two books, but because it is a better introduction to the subject. Sep 07, Christopher Cotrell rated it really liked it Recommends it elisabeth Thanks for telling us about the problem. Not that I am complaining. The first ice-free days at the Pole may be here in two or three years, but certainly in a decade. Now fielf and with a new afterword, Field Notes from a Catastrophe is the book to read on the defining issue and greatest challenge of our times.


It’s never over your head. The first chapters explain some of the negative effects of climate change on nature, while the later chapters deal with how climate change has affected man and civilization in the past, how it will likely affect us in the future, and how political leaders are squandering the last few years we have left to make much of difference – all in order to appease their big-time cash contributors.

Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. Whereas CO2 levels stood at parts per million when the observatory began operation, today they measure parts per million. James Inhoffe, for example, is feat This is a really good primer on climate change, the perfect gift for your conservative uncle who koblert climate change is a liberal conspiracy.

Indeed, our chances of surviving the global heating we are inducing by pumping more and more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere look positively grim, according elizabetb Kolbert. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. She also travels to the ice sheets of Greenland and the jungles of Costa Rica… once again collecting data from scientists….

Kolbert is a fine writer, and although I suppose the book is somewhat out of date by now – the things she writes of have gone from bad to much worse elizabeh it is still a good introduction to climate change from the point of view of the Arctic, where things are changing fastest.

The canary is already dead.