First Chapter. ‘Field Notes From a Catastrophe’. By ELIZABETH KOLBERT MARCH 12, Continue reading the main story Share This Page. Continue. Field Notes from a Catastrophe. by Elizabeth Kolbert. Bloomsbury £ The Inuit people of Banks Island have no word to describe what we. In Field Notes From a Catastrophe, Elizabeth Kolbert presents incontrovertible evidence that global warming is a clear and present danger.

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Closer to home, a record-setting heat wave this June killed in the United States, breaking thousands of local temperature records and sending the mercury above degrees as far north as North Dakota. Natural selection is shaping Wyeomyia smithii so it can take advantage of our warming planet. The content is not uplifting, but this message needs to be heard. More important, tell him, or her, to be afraid, to be very afraid, for if manmade climate change is producing evolutionary change in squitty, little mozzies, we can be sure the effects for humanity will be much worse.

We shouldn’t sneer at Wyeomyia smithii, however. It also gives a hard look at various existing schemes proposed to meet the crisis.

Field Notes from a Catastrophe

The author has been reporting on climate science and mixing with scientists for some time, and it shows. I finished this book feeling very depressed about the future prospects for survival of the human race. Then she clarifies how global climate change is not just a recent fad but has been studied since the middle of the nineteenth century. After the third or fourth instance, it started to get really old and formulaic, but luckily skippable.

That this is a recipe for worldwide catastrophe is made quite clear in this slim book by science writer Elizabeth Kolbert. Kolbert has a knack for making complicated topics understandable. I’m not a climate change skeptic by any means, but my biggest frustration is people who don’t lay out the argument for why changing the earth at a geological level is either morally or practically unacceptable.


I’m not a climate change skeptic by any means, but my biggest frustration is This book seems poorly-proportioned.

Field Notes from a Catastrophe – Wikipedia

Dobriansky’s only message is endlessly to repeat the mantra ‘we act, we learn, we act again’, and to insist economic growth ‘is the solution, not the problem’. Does climate chan With so much talk on what a major climate change could mean fueld our future, this book details what effects climate change is currently bringing upon us.

Not that I am complaining. Challenging the regime of capital — based as it is on the cheapest and fastest exploitation of labor and nature notss the endless expansion of exchange value — and the creation of an ecological social-economic democracy, is at the core of this necessary transformation. It may seem impossible to imagine that a technologically advanced society could choose, in essence, to destroy itself, but that is what we are now in the rfom of doing.

Elizabeth Kolbert is the modern day Cassandra of Greek mythology warning of the inevitable future on climate change, if we do little to alter our current course. Kolbert has managed to avoid the usual trap of preaching to the reader about the implications of not taking action as soon as is humanly possible and has focused on what can be proved based on the data available.

This book should be required reading for anyone in Congress, the people who control the Fate of our Earth, to get educated? And, as important, given it urgency.

First, Kolbert talks about how ancient civilizations have been driven to catastrlphe because of climate change.

She learns that Iceland is losing its ice: Her thesis is solid, built on dozens of similar stories, each calmly outlined and related in such measured terms that it is impossible not to be ensnared by her polemic. For example, she explains the origins of the Byrd-Hagel Resolution — adopted by the Dlizabeth. Pre-historic air trapped in arctic ice-cores is not the only evidence of our new climate regime. It was an excellent book full of scientific explanations to nearly all the questions I had about the issue of climate change.


Sign up for our Solidarity Newsletter. In what began as groundbreaking three-part series in the New Yorkerfor which she won a National Magazine Award inKolbert cuts through the competing rhetoric and political agendas to elucidate for Cataastrophe what is really going on with the global environment and asks what, if anything, can be done to save our planet.

Field Notes from a Catastrophe: Man, Nature, and Climate Change

In fact, I wish I had read it first – not because it is the better of the two books, but because it is a better introduction to the subject. If you know someone still trying to deny the threat of global warming, this book would make a good present for them. And that is that the climate system has much greater things in store for us than we think. It would certainly have made a perfect ending to her book. I think catasrophe of the most startling aspects of this book, for me, was learning that the study of climate change as it relates to the burning of fossil fuels actually dates back to the 19th century.

Although the information in this book is dated the book was written almost a decade ago… which tells ontes that things are more dire than this book demonstrates! She made them human.