326 pages, Figs, col plate section, tabs
While changes in emissions and atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases are generally projected to be slow and smooth, there are increasing indications that the intensity and impacts of climate change on the environment and society could, at least on a regional basis, be abrupt and bumpy. Surprising and nonlinear responses are likely to result as warming exceeds certain thresholds, inducing relatively rapid changes in, for example, the Greenland and West Antarctic ice sheets, atmospheric wind and precipitation patterns, coastal inundation, the occurrence of wildfire, and the ranges of plant and animal species.
Written and edited by a transdisciplinary group of internationally respected researchers, this book explores the science behind and possibilities of such changes, and their significance for our society - and in doing so goes beyond the political 'lowest common denominator' conclusions as represented in the forthcoming IPCC 4th Assessment. In addition to covering the status of the science in a number of the critical areas, it also provides indications that there is a significant potential (and need) for action to limit human-induced perturbations, which can occur more rapidly than governments are currently moving.
'An excellent, broad-ranging overview.' Future Survey 'Recommended' Choice
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