America's Endangered Coasts: Photographs from Texas to Maine is a pioneering and thought-provoking photographic survey of coastal areas of the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts of the United States that are already threatened by a rising sea. Using a topographic aesthetic that combines straightforward, highly detailed color photographs with GPS locations and elevations above sea level for each site, this book photographically responds to low-lying areas that are frequently over-developed and vulnerable to high tides and storms such as Hurricanes Katrina, Irene, and Sandy. America's Endangered Coasts contains 168 color photographs and two essays, one by Liz Wells, a prominent British writer who offers a photo/art perspective of the work, and one by Dr. James E. Hansen, based on his prophetic scientific understandings of the climate-change crisis and some ways to address it.
Current scientific projections conclusively show that the future of civilization along the world's coasts is at stake due to the climate-change crisis. According to the latest conservative projections, Earth's sea levels will rise by no less than three to five feet within a century and very possibly much more. This amount of sea-rise, compounded by hurricanes and storm surges, will threaten and make unsustainable large portions of the coastal areas of the Gulf of Mexico, from Texas to Florida, and the Atlantic seaboard, from Florida to Maine. All coastal areas of the world, in fact, are at risk, since nearly half of the world' population lives along and near coastal regions.
America's Endangered Coasts promises to make an important contribution to the world of photographic art and to the public's awareness of climate change and its impact on everyday life. The book serves as both a warning of things to come and a photographic document of lasting historical value, since many areas that Ganis has photographed will be underwater by 2100. It is the first book of its kind to offer such comprehensive geographic coverage of representative areas along the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts that are threatened now and in the future by a rising sea.
John Ganis is a photographer and a professor of photography at the College for Creative Studies in Detroit. His photographs on land use in America are in the collections of the Center for Creative Photography, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Osaka University of Arts, and San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, among others, and they have appeared in Aperture Magazine, Camera Austria International, Kwartlnik Fotografia, Photographie Magazine, The Photo Review, and Photo Technik International. Ganis is also the author of Consuming the American Landscape (Dewi Lewis, 2003), which was awarded a Stuttgart Photo Book Prize.
Liz Wells is Professor of Photographic Culture at Plymouth University in England and a visiting professor at the University of Ulster's Belfast School of Art. She is the editor and author of eighteen book on photography, including The Photography Reader (Routledge, 2003) and Photography: A Critical Introduction (Routledge, 1996; 2015), and she is a co-editor for the journal photographies.
James E. Hansen is an adjunct professor at Columbia University's Earth Institute, where he directs the Climate Science, Awareness, and Solutions Program. In 1995, he was elected to the National Academy of Sciences, and, in 2006, he received the American Association for the Advancement of Science's Award for Scientific Freedom and Responsibility and was designated by TIME Magazine as one of the 100 most influential people on Earth. He is the author of Storms of My Grandchildren: The Truth About the Coming Climate Catastrophe and Our Last Chance to Save Humanity (Bloomsbury, 2009) and more than 100 scientific articles on climatology and global warming.