Thursday, August 12, 2010

Why Is Weather So Fascinating? THE WEATHER OF THE FUTURE by Heidi Cullen

The Weather of the Future by Heidi CullenA story off the Associated Press wire today headlined "Huge Ice Island Splits From Greenland" notes that:

"An island of ice more than four times the size of Manhattan is drifting across the Arctic Ocean after breaking off from a glacier in Greenland, potentially threatening shipping lanes and oil platforms.

The iceberg is moving toward the Nares Strait, which separates the northwestern coast of Greenland and Ellesmere Island of Canada.

If it makes it into the strait before the winter freeze, the iceberg will probably be carried south by ocean currents, hugging Canada’s eastern coast until it enters waters busy with oil and shipping activities off Newfoundland.

'That’s where it starts to become dangerous,' said Mark Drinkwater of the European Space Agency.

Scientists say this ice island is the biggest in the Northern Hemisphere since 1962."

As someone who is sitting in her office high above midtown Manhattan as she types this blog post, it seems absolutely incredible that "an island of ice four times the size of Manhattan is drifting across the Arctic Ocean." All I can mutter is a stunned "Wow!" I think the reason why everyone finds the subject of weather so fascinating and awe-inspiring is because the weather is random and powerful and has the ability to make or break our lives.

A perfect book for weather enthusiasts is the recently published The Weather of the Future: Heat Waves, Extreme Storms, and Other Scenes from a Climate-Changed Planet. Written by Heidi Cullen, one of America’s foremost climatologists and environmental journalists, Cullen offers a fascinating glimpse into the future and offers a provocative forecast of what different parts of the world could look like in the year 2050 if we do not reduce carbon emissions from current levels. Combining interviews with climate scientists from around the world with state-of-the-art climate model projections, this essential volume spells out the inherent risks that global warming poses for everyone—not just those who live on the coasts (on that note, watch out for that huge piece of floating ice from Greenland...).

If you would like to consider The Weather of the Future for one of your classes, please order an examination copy. If you've already decided to require this book, please request a desk copy.

If you would like to see other Environmental Studies books that we have to offer, please take a look at our online Environmental Studies catalog.

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