Elizabeth Kolbert, “Field Notes From A Catastrophe”

Don't Need A Diagram

Elizabeth Kolbert’s Field Notes From a Catastrophe—Man, Nature and Climate Change is more than ten years old, but don’t let that dissuade you from reading this brisk, concise overview about the complexities of global warming and all the reasons we should be worried.

Very worried.

Kolbert zooms in and zooms out, from details to big-picture analysis. She visits the Alaskan village of Shismaref five miles off the coast of the Seward Peninsula. She heads to Swiss Camp, a research station on a platform drilled into the Greenland ice sheet. And, among other locations, she takes a look at the Monteverde Cloud Forest in north-central Costa Rica. Everywhere she goes are clear-eyed scientists doing their thing—observing, monitoring, measuring. And watching the world change under the pressures of global warming.

Everywhere Kolbert stops, the signs of change are abundant, unequivocal, unambiguous—all without being sensational. We are sloppy drunk on fossil fuels and…

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