Kurt's Reviews > The Weather Makers: How Man Is Changing the Climate and What It Means for Life on Earth

The Weather Makers by Tim Flannery
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Jun 27, 2009

it was amazing
bookshelves: climate-change, environment, current-events, science, non-fiction
Read in January, 2007

For some time before I read this book I had been interested in the science behind global warming. I listened with amazement to experts and pseudo-experts of all kinds offer their expertise on the subject to the public. I absorbed, but rarely participated in, the frequent debates that came my way at work, social gatherings, and on talk radio and TV. During this time I tried to keep an open mind on the subject - realizing that humans possibly could have an effect on the global climate, but wanting to be convinced, one way or the other, before actually taking a stand on the subject.

A few things that struck me during this time of observation and casual investigation were 1) Those who adamantly deny the possibility of man having any effect on global climate were uneducated about it or primarily ideologically driven, 2) The vast majority of the skeptics (those who have scientific expertise on the subject and insist that the data is inconclusive and that we need more time to analyze the data) are almost invariably funded or supported by industries who have much to lose in the short term if public opinion fails them, and 3) the nearly voiceless community of climate scientists overwhelmingly concurs on the major aspects of the theory.

Realizing that there must be something to this theory, I finally decided to become more educated about it. I researched many books and authors, and eventually I decided that The Weather Makers by Tim Flannery would be a very good starting point. I must say that I was not disappointed. A large amount of the book deals with how climate change is affecting various species of plants and animals worldwide. Personally, I found this very informative and appropriate since we have long known that all organisms on this biosphere are inter-related. When significant problems occur to numerous species humans are eventually going to suffer some consequence.

The author explains the science behind this subject very well; I believe most readers will comprehend it. Of course, more detail could have been provided, but, as it is, a good balance is achieved.

Overall, the book left me in a mild state of gloom. Knowing the prevalence of ignorance in the world, and the forces at work to keep people that way by spreading lies, deceit, and uncertainty made me feel that our unsustainable civilization as we know it is doomed to gradually spiral downward. We all owe it to ourselves and future generations to educate ourselves on this subject.
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