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

3.64  ·  Rating Details ·  95 Ratings  ·  16 Reviews
The Winds of Change places the horrifying carnage unleashed on New Orleans, Mississippi, and Alabama by Hurricane Katrina in context.

Climate has been humanity's constant, if moody, companion. At times benefactor or tormentor, climate nurtured the first stirrings of civilization and then repeatedly visited ruin on empires and peoples. Eugene Linden reveals a recurring pat
Paperback, 336 pages
Published June 26th 2007 by Simon & Schuster (first published 2006)
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Feb 20, 2008 Thomas rated it liked it
A competent but unadventuresome tour of the state of global warming science and media coverage thereof, circa 2006. 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. But this really-quite-decent book is most notable, unfortunately, for coming out at just about exactly the same time as, and b ...more
A tsunami of both separate facts and the patterns and trends made up of those facts. The author's message is urgent, but his tone is dispassionate - he seems to feel he doesn't need to shout because the information he presents shouts for itself. My basic nature is to be skeptical about any ideas or data other people present; one of my mottoes is "Prove it." However, in this area, I am convinced. The numbers are there to show that our global average temperatures are getting hotter and that the he ...more
Bruce Sanders
Aug 14, 2008 Bruce Sanders rated it really liked it
This book is about climate change and its affects on civilization. It starts out reminiscent of Jared Diamond's Collapse in that it goes through examples of civilizations that died at least partially because of rapid climate change. The book then becomes a primer on how rapid climate change can occur and how man made global warming could cause a rapid climate change event. The interesting emphasis is on the notion of sudden rapid climate change. Too many people believe climate change will be a s ...more
Jun 25, 2008 Eileen rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone interested in climate and climate change
Recommended to Eileen by: Shelftalk blog at Seattle Public Library
If you have any doubts that we are experiencing extreme and fast climate change, read this book. Linden goes through what we know about long cycles of climate, and what has been discovered in recent years. He also explains why the public is not alarmed while scientists are.
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. His writing is authoritative, and ba
Jun 08, 2010 Grace rated it it was amazing
The banner on this book describes it very well, "Climate, weather, and the destruction of civilizations." The author describes climate changes over the eons in a clear and understandable manner, and the impact of these changes on earlier civilizations. Our political dysfunction allows for no preparation for any traumatic events and keeps the average person in a state of ignorance - regardless of whether or not climatic changes are the result of human activity.
Jul 14, 2010 Zjay rated it really liked it
Linden examines historical events to determine if climatic change could have been a factor explaining the decline of civilizations. He carefully reviews the evidence scientists have presented over the last 30 years. He explains the chief "gears" that drive air currents. He cogently explains the ocean currents that greatly affect weather. He investigates the El Nino phenomenon and its global consequences. Most interesting to me was his examination of the scholarly debates regarding whether climat ...more

ชวงเวลาหนึงหมืนปีทีผานมาบนโลกเปนชวงอากาศอบอุนเกือบคงทีตลอด พวกเราจึงแทบไมเคยคิดเลยวาภูมิอากาศโลกมันเปลียนกันได แถมอาจเปลียนอยางฉับพลันในชัวขามคืนกเคยมีมาแลว
เรืองภูิมิอากาศเพิงเปนหัวขอเดนเมือประมาณ 20 ปีมานีเองหลังจากมีหลักฐานเพิมขึนมาก

วิทยาศาสตรของระบบภูมิอากาศโลก และเขาศึกษาแกนนำแขงกับตะกอนใตสมุทรกันอยางไร
Jun 14, 2008 Mom rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: anyone interested to global warming
Recommended to Mom by: heard author speak
Linden argues that rapid climate change has occurred historically more often than we would like to admit, and that it has had devastating impact on great and now vanished civilizations. I laid the book down after reading all but the last chapter two years ago. I read the last chapter this week (June 2008) after severe thunderstorms led to flooding in much of the USA Midwest, and I have renewed understanding and respect for the author's analysis of the relationship between carbon emissions and gl ...more
Mary Brodd
*changing climates favored bigger-brained, more adaptable hominids
*climate change more abrupt than originally thought
*THC - thermohaline circulation - as water evaporates, it becomes saltier, therefore heavier, so it SINKS, pulling the current behind it. Happens ONLY in the North Atlantic (Gulf Stream)
*cycles exist from 100,000 years down to 20 years (El Nino) - we are at the intersection of lots of cycles
*Human activities both increase risk of severe climate change and minimize earth's ability
Jun 30, 2009 Steven rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: skeptics, believers, and knowledge seekers
This book is very interesting, covering climate change in Earth's history, evidence of how this has affected human civilizations in the past, how unstable Earth's climate is and how it may have fine tipping points which in breaching can cause dramatic climate changes, and how humans are able to effect the climate sufficiently (and may be doing so already) to tip the climate.
Dec 10, 2012 Dan rated it it was amazing
Very well researched and written. Linden presents his case without bias and systematically disproves and silences opponents of climate change by examining historical sites and evidence with a different perspective.
Mar 09, 2012 Pam rated it really liked it
Very thorough. Eye-opening as well.
Jul 04, 2010 Cindy rated it really liked it
Ties together my interest in history and climate/weather.
John Kaufmann
May 22, 2015 John Kaufmann rated it really liked it
Shelves: climate-change
A history of how climate has affected different civilization over the millennia.
Apr 17, 2008 Bruce rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: everyone 40 and under
Shelves: nonfiction
We are arguing about Roberts' Rules of Order as we head over the cliff...
Nov 28, 2007 Stacy rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Apathetic non-environmentalists
Alarmist! Only got two chapters in and mailed it back to the Kansas City library because-- Jesus-- I have to be able to wake up in the morning. I'm already a bit paranoid.
Nigel rated it liked it
Oct 10, 2011
Sofea rated it liked it
Jun 15, 2015
Aaron Schmidt
Aaron Schmidt rated it really liked it
Jul 19, 2015
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Dec 23, 2011
Richard Williams
Richard Williams rated it liked it
May 01, 2009
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Heather rated it liked it
Aug 23, 2007
David M.
David M. rated it it was amazing
Jun 04, 2013
Laurie rated it liked it
Jan 29, 2010
Jim O'Donnell
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Jan 02, 2008
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