Book reviews

Adventures in the Anthropocene

by Bryan Walker July 28, 2014

Science journalist Gaia Vince left her desk at Nature and spent two years visiting places around the world, some of them very isolated, where people were grappling with the conditions of what is sometimes described as a new epoch, the Anthropocene. It dates from the industrial revolution and represents a different world from the relatively […]

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Climate Change and the Course of Global History

by Bryan Walker June 3, 2014

The title in the Kindle Store was irresistible: Climate Change and the Course of Global History: A Rough Journey. American historian John L Brooke is the author, and the book is notable for its attempt to integrate climate science with the study of human history. In his acknowledgements the author brackets climate scientists with historians […]

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The Moral Challenge of Dangerous Climate Change

by Bryan Walker April 22, 2014

The combination of a recently acquired desktop video magnifier and a kindle has for the time being restored some ease to my reading. Hence this review. I was drawn by the title The Moral Challenge of Dangerous Climate Change: Values, Poverty and Policy, since I can’t see the resistance to energy reform mounted by powerful […]

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Living in a warmer world

by Gareth March 3, 2014

This year really has started with a bang. An unusual concatenation of weather extremes — Britain’s stormy and wet winter – the wettest since records began, 250 years ago – the warm winter in Russia and Alaska, drought in California and Australian heatwaves — has caused many people to consider the role that climate change […]

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The Signal and the Noise: The Art and Science of Prediction: Nate Silver on the climate numbers

by JasonK January 19, 2013

Nate Silver is a math pundit who founded the fivethirtyeight blog now over at the NY Times. That blog was all about the presidential election and over there he used a series of polls to predict (very successfully) the results of both the 2008 and 2012 US elections. An integral part of Nate’s approach is to use […]

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Rising Sea Levels

by Bryan Walker October 29, 2012

Of all the consequences of human-caused global warming, sea level rise has always held special alarm for me in its inexorability, its extension into the future, and the enormous disruption it threatens to centres of high population and essential infrastructure. Scientist Scott Mandia (blog) and writer Hunt Janin have teamed to produce for the general […]

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Greenwash: Big Brands and Carbon Scams

by Bryan Walker October 18, 2012

Greenwash: Big Brands and Carbon Scams by Guy Pearse was an eye-opener for a reader like me who pays practically no attention to brand advertising. I didn’t realise how many major brands are striving to present green credentials to their consumers. The book covers a multitude of them across many sectors of the economy, from […]

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A Short Introduction to Climate Change

by Bryan Walker September 30, 2012

Tony Eggleton’s A Short Introduction to Climate Change is an excellent account of climate science for the general reader. The author is a retired geology professor from the Australian National University. Two widely read climate change deniers, Ian Plimer and Bob Carter, are also retired Australian geology professors, but Eggleton is not of their ilk. […]

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Cold Cash, Cool Climate

by Bryan Walker August 9, 2012

I’m no entrepreneur, but I enjoyed reading energy scientist Jonathan Koomey’s book Cold Cash, Cool Climate: Science-Based Advice for Ecological Entrepreneurs. It’s comforting to be reminded that not everything in the mitigation of climate change depends on governments, that there is a lively creativity abroad in the entrepreneurial world which can take up the challenge […]

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Waking the Giant

by Bryan Walker July 18, 2012

It’s only if we fail to grasp the enormity of the threatened impacts of climate change on the global environment that we can scoff at the notion that even volcanic eruptions and earthquakes may be triggered as a consequence of our continuing to burn fossil fuels. Not that it’s an easy consequence to appreciate, but […]

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