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A Sugar Creek Chronicle: Observing Climate Change from a Midwestern Woodland

4.30  ·  Rating details ·  44 ratings  ·  11 reviews
In 2010, while editing a report on the effects of climate change in Iowa, ecologist Cornelia Mutel came to grips with the magnitude and urgency of the problem. She already knew the basics: greenhouse gas emissions and global average temperatures are rising on a trajectory that could, within decades, propel us beyond far-reaching, irreversible atmospheric changes; the resul ...more
Paperback, 240 pages
Published March 15th 2016 by University Of Iowa Press
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Jan 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: midwest
An important, often beautiful, but also disturbing book about climate change. Beautifully written passages reflecting Mutel's passion for keen observation of the natural beauty of the landscape surrounding her home outside Iowa City alternate with observations of the effects of climate change on that landscape and deeply disturbing, scientifically based extrapolations of the long-term global effects if current trends continue. The disturbing effect is magnified by the juxtaposition of the two co ...more
May 08, 2016 rated it really liked it
Connie Mutel has written a sort of "Silent Spring" for the climate change era. It is part memoir and part essay, which makes for easy and enjoyable reading. She goes through her life and gives details of how the world has literally changed in her backyard.

Her backyard is a part of Iowa, my home state, that has not been turned under for corn and soybeans. She treats the land where she lives, and the creatures that inhabit it, as part of an extension of herself, so she cares about it as much as sh
Rhonda Spilde
Mar 04, 2017 rated it liked it
Good book for making everyone think about environmental impact and climate change. Detailed descriptions of Mutel's experiences in the outdoors. Overly descriptive at times as I found myself skimming.
Deb Lewis
Sep 08, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A Sugar Creek Chronical: Observing Climate Change from a Midwestern Woodland is unlike any available publication on climate change, as far as I’m aware! Yes, it provides the important information that allows us to comprehend why and how our climate has changed and is changing, but it is not a scientific treatise. Rather, Cornelia has carefully summarized the relevant data from both the natural and social sciences to present them to the reader in bite-sized, understandable pieces within the narra ...more
Marlene Ehresman
Oct 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A Sugar Creek Chronicle is a must read for anyone who truly values living on this earth and who values family and community. Cornelia (Connie) Mutel does an extraordinary job of explaining the factual evidence of why each of us should take climate change very seriously. She does this quite effectively by weaving in personal stories, memoirs that relate to the changes in the land that she has observed over time. Connie presents this information in a manner that is both understandable and enticing ...more
Jun 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This book deserves to be a best-seller, not just because of the artfulness of the construction and the writing but because of the immediacy of the problem Cornelia Mutel so powerfully lays before us.

Disclaimer. The author of this book is a former student of mine--one of those students who you know, even as she works through assignments, is going to far surpass her teacher in both style and substance.

First the substance: Mutel is a scientist in full command of the latest research on climate chan
Catherine Woodman
Jan 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is a book that is probably largely appealing if you are both a lover of nonfiction nature books and from Iowa. In other words, this is really a niche market book, and you might have suspected that based only on the fact that it was published by a University Press. In any case, if you happen to fall into those two categories (and I have to say that I read very little nonfiction and I am not what I would call an attention to detail nature enthusiast and I liked the book), this is a nice short ...more
Anne Emerick
Sep 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I'm absolutely astonished by the author, Cornelia Mutal accomplishes with A Sugar Creek Chronicle. Climate change is a topic of profound interest to everyone. Ms Mutel clearly has an utterly solid scientific grip on the facts, and how we as a nation and planet have come to the current crisis, and what looms for us in the future if we do not take action soon. What is so compelling is Ms Mutel’s ability to weave the scientific facts in with her own history, while interspersing it with absolutely ...more
Elaine Reardon
Sep 21, 2016 rated it really liked it
Books like this are so important , especially today, with the clock ticking on human & climate change.
We can all do something; I read this because in MA. we are battling fracked gas pipelines ( and making good progress). As a state MA is strongly supporting solar, and we have an excellent loan program. WE all need to observe, and then work in any ways, in all ways we can, from writing and praying, to jumping in the ditches, to know what we have to loose, and loose so completely.
Jun 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
If you are looking for a personal perspective on climate change, this book will give you that. For parents and grandparents who care about the effects of climate change on future generations, this insightful close-up reflection will inspire thoughts of taking small (and perhaps large) steps to stem the impact of environmental thoughtlessness.
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