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Climate Change: The Science of Global Warming and our Energy Future

By: Edmond A Mathez

318 pages, Col illus

Columbia University Press

Hardback | May 2009 | #178261 | ISBN-13: 9780231146425
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NHBS Price: £46.99 $62/€53 approx

About this book

Climate Change is geared toward a variety of students and general readers who seek the real science behind global warming. Exquisitely illustrated, the volume introduces the basic science underlying both the natural progress of climate change and the effect of human activity on the deteriorating health of the planet. Straightforward and even-handed, noted author Edmond A. Mathez synthesizes the work of leading scholars in climatology and related fields. His book concludes with an extensive chapter on energy production, anchoring the text in economic and technological realities and suggesting ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Climate Change grows out of a major 2008 exhibition at the American Museum of Natural History and scheduled for a world tour-indeed the science in this book will be seen by millions around the globe. The book opens with the climate system fundamentals; the workings of the atmosphere and ocean, their chemical interactions via the carbon cycle, and the scientific framework for understanding climate change. Mathez then brings the climate of the past to bear on our present predicament, highlighting the importance of paleoclimatology in understanding the current climate system. Subsequent chapters explore the changes already occurring around us and what they imply for the future. In a special feature, Jason E. Smerdon, associate research scientist at Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University, has prepared an innovative Student Companion Appendix.

[Mathez's] words make complex concepts like ocean chemistry, the albedo effect, and predictive climate modeling - the language and science of global warming - easily understood. Natural History 8/1/09 The hot topics of global warming and climate change are expertly covered in this coherent, well-structured volume. -- Rita Hoots NSTA Recommends 9/21/09 Mathez has succeeded admirably... [ Climate Change might well be the best of its kind available at present. -- Barry W. Brook Quaterly Review of Biology 12/1/09


PrefaceAbbreviations1. Climate in Context2. The Character of the Atmosphere3. The World Ocean4. The Carbon Cycle and How It Influences Climate5. A Scientific Framework for Thinking About Climate Change6. Learning from Climates Past7. A Century of Warming and Some Consequences8. More Consequences: The Sensitive Arctic and Sea-Level Rise9. Climate Models and the Future10. Energy and the FutureNotesGlossaryBibliographyIndex

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Edmond A. Mathez is curator in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences at the American Museum of Natural History in New York. He is one of the leading expositors of earth systems science, having co-written The Earth Machine: The Science of a Dynamic Planet. He and Michael Oppenheimer developed a major exhibition that opened in October 2008 at the American Museum of Natural History, "Climate Change: The Threat to Life and a New Energy Future," and that is traveling to major cities around the world.

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