The Winds of Change: Climate, Weather, and the Destruction of Civilizations

The Winds of Change: Climate, Weather, and the Destruction of Civilizations

The Winds of Change places the horrifying carnage unleashed on New Orleans, Mississippi, and Alabama by Hurricane Katrina in context.

The science of climate change is still young, and the interactions of climate with other historical forces are much debated, but the evidence mounts that climate loomed over the fate of societies from arctic Greenland to the Fertile Crescent and from the lost cities of the Mayans in Central America to the rain forests of Central Africa.

Taking into account the uncertainties in both science and the historical record, Linden explores the evidence indicating that climate has been a serial killer of civilizations.

In the closing chapters, Linden explores why warnings about the dangers of climate change have gone unheeded and what is happening with climate today, and he offers perhaps the most explicit look yet at what a haywire climate might do to us.

The Winds of Change places climate change, global warming, and the resulting instability in historical context and sounds an urgent warning for the future.

Reviews of the The Winds of Change: Climate, Weather, and the Destruction of Civilizations

Linden was a longtime environmental writer at Time, and one of the first "big" journalists to start covering global warming on a regular basis, and the several chapters that deal with the history of climate change in the media are excellent and fascinating. I'd recommend Kolbert for a primer on basic climate change science, Linden for that plus more of the social, political and media context, and Flannery if you already know a fair amount of that stuff and are up for a more intellectual, idiosyncratic and enjoyable take on all that, plus some powerful sections on the need for action, and what that action ought to be.

'The Winds of Change' contains a tremendous amount of history about our planet's climate, with explanations of the research that provided that historical background, and an equal amount of info about the mechanisms by which the atmosphere and the world ocean route much of the heat Earth absorbs from the Sun in the tropics to the planet's temperate and polar regions and bring colder air and water back to the equatorial regions to start the cycle over, as well as the effects on that circulation of the continents' locations, mountain ranges, and forests.

This book is about climate change and its affects on civilization. The interesting emphasis is on the notion of sudden rapid climate change.

This book takes a look at climate change, but not just recent events like most people think of. It's a good, if disturbing, read, and makes a very good case for the science of global warming and climate change, as well as highlighting some of the potential horrific things that might happen if this isn't addressed.

The science is explained in term that laymen can understand, and Linden has actually gone to places such as Antarctica, Greenland, and on a cruise to study the Gulf Stream with scientists.

Linden examines historical events to determine if climatic change could have been a factor explaining the decline of civilizations. Linden also describes and reviews numerous works which over the past three decades have significantly changed our understanding of the influence of climate on human history.

This was an informative and educational read about climate change past and present.

I've spent my entire writing career exploring various aspects of one question: Why is it that after hundreds of thousands of years one relatively small subset of our species has reached a point where its fears, appetites, and spending habits control the destiny of every culture, every major ecosystem, and virtually every creature on earth? I began scratching at this question in my first book, Apes, Men and Language, published over 40 years ago. Since the moral basis of our rights to use nature as so much raw material is deeply entangled with the belief that we are the lone sentient beings on the planet, I wondered what it would mean if it turned out that other animals possessed higher mental abilities and consciousness? At the same time that I was exploring the question of higher mental abilities in animals I also began to think about how our notions our notions of our own specialness related to the consumer society.

  • English

  • Science

  • Rating: 3.66
  • Pages: 336
  • Publish Date: June 26th 2007 by Simon Schuster
  • Isbn10: 0684863537
  • Isbn13: 9780684863535