front cover of Adaptive Governance and Climate Change
Adaptive Governance and Climate Change
Ronald D. Brunner and Amanda H. Lynch
American Meteorological Society, 2010

While recent years have seen undeniable progress in international acknowledgement both of the dangers of climate change and the importance of working to mitigate it, little has actually been done. Emissions continue to rise, and even the ambitious targets set by international accords would fall far short of the drastic cuts that are needed to prevent catastrophe.

            
With Adaptive Governance and Climate Change, Ronald D. Brunner and Amanda H. Lynch argue that we need to take a new tack, moving away from reliance on centralized, top-down approaches—the treaties and accords that have proved disappointingly ineffective thus far—and towards a more flexible, multi-level approach. Based in the principles of adaptive governance—which are designed to produce programs that adapt quickly and easily to new information and experimental results—such an approach would encourage diversity and innovation in the search for solutions, while at the same time pointedly recasting the problem as one in which every culture and community around the world has an inherent interest.

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front cover of Addressing Climate Change in Local Water Agency Plans
Addressing Climate Change in Local Water Agency Plans
Demonstrating a Simplified Robust Decision Making Approach in the California Sierra Foothills
David G. Groves
RAND Corporation, 2013
This report describes an approach for planning under deep uncertainty, Robust Decision Making (RDM), and demonstrates its use by the El Dorado Irrigation District (EID). Using RDM, the authors and EID tested the robustness of current long-term water management plans and more robust alternatives across more than 50 futures reflecting different assumptions about future climate, urban growth, and the availability of important new supplies.
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Air Apparent
How Meteorologists Learned to Map, Predict, and Dramatize Weather
Mark Monmonier
University of Chicago Press, 1999
Weather maps have made our atmosphere visible, understandable, and at least moderately predictable. In Air Apparent Mark Monmonier traces debates among scientists eager to unravel the enigma of storms and global change, explains strategies for mapping the upper atmosphere and forecasting disaster, and discusses efforts to detect and control air pollution. Fascinating in its scope and detail, Air Apparent makes us take a second look at the weather map, an image that has been, and continues to be, central to our daily lives.

"Clever title, rewarding book. Monmonier . . . offers here a basic course in meteorology, which he presents gracefully by means of a history of weather maps." —Scientific American

"Mark Monmonier is onto a winner with Air Apparent. . . . It is good, accessible science and excellent history. . . . Read it." —Fred Pearce, New Scientist

"[Air Apparent] is a superb first reading for any backyard novice of weather . . . but even the veteran forecaster or researcher will find it engaging and, in some cases, enlightening." —Joe Venuti, Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society

"Monmonier is solid enough in his discussion of geographic and meteorological information to satisfy the experienced weather watcher. But even if this information were not presented in such a lively and engaging manner, it would still hook most any reader who checks the weather map every morning or who sits happily entranced through a full cycle of forecasts on the Weather Channel."—Michael Kennedy, Boston Globe
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The AMS Weather Book
The Ultimate Guide to America's Weather
Jack Williams
University of Chicago Press, 2009

America has some of the most varied and dynamic weather in the world. Every year, the Gulf Coast is battered by hurricanes, the Great Plains are ravaged by tornados, the Midwest is pummeled by blizzards, and the temperature in the Southwest reaches a sweltering 120 degrees. Extreme weather can be a matter of life and death, but even when it is pleasant—72 degrees and sunny—weather is still central to the lives of all Americans. Indeed, it’s hard to imagine a topic of greater collective interest. Whether we want to know if we should close the storm shutters or just carry an umbrella to work, we turn to forecasts. But few of us really understand the science behind them.

All that changes with The AMS Weather Book. The most comprehensive and up-to-date guide to our weather and our atmosphere, it is the ultimate resource for anyone who wants to understand how hurricanes form, why tornados twirl, or even why the sky is cerulean blue. Written by esteemed science journalist and former USA Today weather editor Jack Williams, The AMS Weather Book, copublished with the American Meteorological Society, covers everything from daily weather patterns, air pollution, and global warming to the stories of people coping with severe weather and those who devote their lives to understanding the atmosphere, oceans, and climate. Words alone, of course, are not adequate to explain many meteorological concepts, so The AMS Weather Book is filled with engaging full-color graphics that explain such concepts as why winds blow in a particular direction, how Doppler weather radar works, what happens inside hurricanes, how clouds create wind and snow, and what’s really affecting the earth’s climate.

For Weather Channel junkies, amateur meteorologists, and storm chasers alike, The AMS Weather Book is an invaluable tool for anyone who wants to better understand how weather works and how it affects our lives.

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front cover of Assessment of Climate Change in the Southwest United States
Assessment of Climate Change in the Southwest United States
A Report Prepared for the National Climate Assessment
Edited by Gregg Garfin
Island Press, 2013
Prepared for the 2013 National Climate Assessment and a landmark study in terms of its breadth and depth of coverage, this report blends the contributions of 120 experts in climate science, economics, ecology, engineering, geography, hydrology, planning, resources management, and other disciplines to provide the most comprehensive, and understandable, analysis to date about climate and its effects on the people and landscapes of Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, and Utah—including the U.S.-Mexico border region and the lands of Native Nations.
 
What is the climate of the Southwest like today? What has it been like in the past, and how is it projected to change over the 21st century? How will that affect water resources, ecosystems, agricultural production, energy supply and delivery, transportation, human health, and a host of other areas? How vulnerable is the region to climate change? What else do we need to know about it, and how can we limit its adverse effects?
 
In addressing these and other questions, the book offers decision makers and stakeholders a substantial basis from which to make informed choices that will affect the well-being of the region’s inhabitants in the decades to come.
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Authors of the Storm
Meteorologists and the Culture of Prediction
Gary Alan Fine
University of Chicago Press, 2007

Whether it is used as an icebreaker in conversation or as the subject of serious inquiry, “the weather” is one of the few subjects that everyone talks about. And though we recognize the faces that bring us the weather on television, how government meteorologists and forecasters go about their jobs is rarely scrutinized. Given recent weather-related disasters, it’s time we find out more. In Authors of the Storm, Gary Alan Fine offers an inside look at how meteorologists and forecasters predict the weather.

Based on field observation and interviews at the Storm Prediction Center in Oklahoma, the National Weather Service in Washington, D.C., and a handful of midwestern outlets, Fine finds a supremely hard-working, insular clique of professionals who often refer to themselves as a “band of brothers.” In Fine’s skilled hands, we learn their lingo, how they “read” weather conditions, how forecasts are written, and, of course, how those messages are conveyed to the public. Weather forecasts, he shows, are often shaped as much by social and cultural factors inside local offices as they are by approaching cumulus clouds. By opening up this unique world to us, Authors of the Storm offers a valuable and fascinating glimpse of a crucial profession.

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A Brain for All Seasons
Human Evolution and Abrupt Climate Change
William H. Calvin
University of Chicago Press, 2002
One of the most shocking realizations of all time has slowly been dawning on us: the earth's climate does great flip-flops every few thousand years, and with breathtaking speed. In just a few years, the climate suddenly cools worldwide. With only half the rainfall, severe dust storms whirl across vast areas. Lightning strikes ignite giant forest fires. For most mammals, including our ancestors, populations crash.

Our ancestors lived through hundreds of such abrupt episodes since the more gradual Ice Ages began two and a half million years ago—but abrupt cooling produced a population bottleneck each time, one that eliminated most of their relatives. We are the improbable descendants of those who survived—and later thrived.

William H. Calvin's marvelous A Brain for All Seasons argues that such cycles of cool, crash, and burn powered the pump for the enormous increase in brain size and complexity in human beings. Driven by the imperative to adapt within a generation to "whiplash" climate changes where only grass did well for a while, our ancestors learned to cooperate and innovate in hunting large grazing animals.

Calvin's book is structured as a travelogue that takes us around the globe and back in time. Beginning at Darwin's home in England, Calvin sits under an oak tree and muses on what controls the speed of evolutionary "progress." The Kalahari desert and the Sterkfontein caves in South Africa serve as the backdrop for a discussion of our ancestors' changing diets. A drought-shrunken lake in Kenya shows how grassy mudflats become great magnets for grazing animals. And in Copenhagen, we learn what ice cores have told us about abrupt jumps in past climates.

Perhaps the most dramatic discovery of all, though, awaits us as we fly with Calvin over the Gulf Stream and Greenland: global warming caused by human-made pollution could paradoxically trigger another sudden episode of global cooling. Because of the accumulation of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, the oceanic "conveyor belt" that sends warmer waters into the North Atlantic could abruptly shut down. If that happens again, much of the Earth could be plunged into a deep chill within a few years. Europe would become as cold and dry as Siberia. Agriculture could not adapt quickly enough to avoid worldwide famines and wars over the dwindling food supplies—a crash from which it would take us many centuries to recover.

With this warning, Calvin connects us directly to evolution and the surprises it holds. Highly illustrated, conversational, and learned, A Brain for All Seasons is a fascinating view of where we came from, and where we're going.
[more]

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The Callendar Effect
The Life and Work of Guy Stewart Callendar (1898-1964)
James Rodger Fleming
American Meteorological Society, 2007
This is the untold story of the remarkable scientist who established the carbon dioxide theory of climate change. Guy Stewart Callendar discovered that global warming could be brought about by increases in the concentration of atmospheric carbon dioxide due to human activities, primarily through burning fossil fuels. He did this in 1938! Using never-before-published original scientific correspondence, notebooks, family letters, and photographs, science historian James Rodger Fleming introduces us to one of Britain’s leading engineers and explains his life and work through two World Wars to his continuing legacy as the scientist who established The Callendar Effect.
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Category 5
The Story of Camille, Lessons Unlearned from America's Most Violent Hurricane
Ernest Zebrowski and Judith A. Howard
University of Michigan Press, 2005
". . . the authors sound a pessimistic note about society's short-term memory in their sobering, able history of Camille" --Booklist

"This highly readable account aimed at a general audience excels at telling the plight of the victims and how local political authorities reacted. The saddest lesson is how little the public and the government learned from Camille. Highly recommended for all public libraries, especially those on the Gulf and East coasts."
Library Journal online


As the unsettled social and political weather of summer 1969 played itself out amid the heat of antiwar marches and the battle for civil rights, three regions of the rural South were devastated by the horrifying force of Category 5 Hurricane Camille.

Camille's nearly 200 mile per hour winds and 28-foot storm surge swept away thousands of homes and businesses along the Gulf Coast of Louisiana and Mississippi. Twenty-four oceangoing ships sank or were beached; six offshore drilling platforms collapsed; 198 people drowned. Two days later, Camille dropped 108 billion tons of moisture drawn from the Gulf onto the rural communities of Nelson County, Virginia-nearly three feet of rain in 24 hours. Mountainsides were washed away; quiet brooks became raging torrents; homes and whole communities were simply washed off the face of the earth.

In this gripping account, Ernest Zebrowski and Judith Howard tell the heroic story of America's forgotten rural underclass coping with immense adversity and inconceivable tragedy.

Category 5 shows, through the riveting stories of Camille's victims and survivors, the disproportionate impact of natural disasters on the nation's poorest communities. It is, ultimately, a story of the lessons learned-and, in some cases, tragically unlearned-from that storm: hard lessons that were driven home once again in the awful wake of Hurricane Katrina.

"Emergency responses to Katrina were uncoordinated, slow, and--at least in the early days--woefully inadequate. Politicians argued about whether there had been one disaster or two, as if that mattered. And before the last survivors were even evacuated, a flurry of finger-pointing had begun. The question most neglected was: What is the shelf life of a historical lesson?"

Ernest Zebrowski is founder of the doctoral program in science and math education at Southern University, a historically black university in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and Professor of Physics at Pennsylvania State University's Pennsylvania College of Technology. His previous books include Perils of a Restless Planet: Scientific Perspectives on Natural Disasters. Judith Howard earned her Ph.D. in clinical social work from UCLA, and writes a regular political column for the Ruston, Louisiana, Morning Paper.

"Category 5 examines with sensitivity the overwhelming challenges presented by the human and physical impacts from a catastrophic disaster and the value of emergency management to sound decisions and sustainability."
--John C. Pine, Chair, Department of Geography & Anthropology and Director of Disaster Science & Management, Louisiana State University

[more]

front cover of Challenge of Global Warming
Challenge of Global Warming
Edited by Dean E. Abrahamson; Foreword by Timothy E. Wirth; Natural Resources Defense Council
Island Press, 1989

Challenge of Global Warming examines the causes and effects of global climate change.

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front cover of Civil War Weather in Virginia
Civil War Weather in Virginia
Robert K. Krick
University of Alabama Press, 2007
This work fills a tremendous gap in our available knowledge in a fundamental area of Civil War studies, that of basic quotidian information on the weather in the theater of operations in the vicinity of Washington, DC, and Richmond, Virginia. Krick adds to the daily records kept by amateur meteorologists in these two locations. Anecdotal descriptions of weather found in contemporary soldiers’ dairies and correspondence combines these scattered records into a chronology of weather information that also includes daybreak and sunset times for each day. The information in Civil War Weather in Virginia is indispensable for students of the Civil War in the vital northern Virginia/Maryland theater of operations, and of the effects of weather on military history in general.
[more]

front cover of Climate Affairs
Climate Affairs
A Primer
Michael H. Glantz
Island Press, 2003

Climate Affairs sets forth in a concise primer the base of knowledge needed to begin to address questions surrounding the unknown impacts of climate change. In so doing, it outlines a new approach to understanding the interactions among climate, society, and the environment. Chapters consider:

• the key concepts and terms in climate affairs
• the effects of climate around the world
• important but overlooked aspects of climate-society-environment interactions
• examples of societal uses, misuses, and potential uses of climate-related information such as forecasts
• a research agenda, challenges, and methodologies for future climate research.
Climate Affairs draws on a range of study areas—including climate science, impacts on ecosystems and society, politics, policy and law, economics, and ethics—to address the complexity and gravity of impacts that our increasing vulnerability to climate portends. It is the first book to consider the full range of climate-related topics and the interactions among them, and will be a key resource for decision makers, as well as for students and scholars working in climate and related fields.
[more]

front cover of Climate and Culture Change in North America AD 900–1600
Climate and Culture Change in North America AD 900–1600
By William C. Foster
University of Texas Press, 2012

Climate change is today’s news, but it isn’t a new phenomenon. Centuries-long cycles of heating and cooling are well documented for Europe and the North Atlantic. These variations in climate, including the Medieval Warm Period (MWP), AD 900 to 1300, and the early centuries of the Little Ice Age (LIA), AD 1300 to 1600, had a substantial impact on the cultural history of Europe. In this pathfinding volume, William C. Foster marshals extensive evidence that the heating and cooling of the MWP and LIA also occurred in North America and significantly affected the cultural history of Native peoples of the American Southwest, Southern Plains, and Southeast.

Correlating climate change data with studies of archaeological sites across the Southwest, Southern Plains, and Southeast, Foster presents the first comprehensive overview of how Native American societies responded to climate variations over seven centuries. He describes how, as in Europe, the MWP ushered in a cultural renaissance, during which population levels surged and Native peoples substantially intensified agriculture, constructed monumental architecture, and produced sophisticated works of art. Foster follows the rise of three dominant cultural centers—Chaco Canyon in New Mexico, Cahokia on the middle Mississippi River, and Casas Grandes in northwestern Chihuahua, Mexico—that reached population levels comparable to those of London and Paris. Then he shows how the LIA reversed the gains of the MWP as population levels and agricultural production sharply declined; Chaco Canyon, Cahokia, and Casas Grandes collapsed; and dozens of smaller villages also collapsed or became fortresses.

[more]

front cover of Climate Change and Energy Supply and Use
Climate Change and Energy Supply and Use
Technical Report for the U.S. Department of Energy in Support of the National Climate Assessment
Thomas J. Wilbanks
Island Press, 2014
Developed to inform the 3rd National Climate Assessment, and a landmark study in terms of its breadth and depth of coverage and conducted under the auspices of the U.S. Department of Energy, Climate Change and Energy Supply and Use examines the known effects and relationships of climate change variables on energy production and supply, including oil, gas, thermal electricity, and renewable energy.

Knowledge of today’s available energy forms is constantly surfacing and changing in the face of climate change, making it increasingly important to enhance communication about various energy supplies. This report on energy supply and use summarizes current knowledge, especially emerging findings, about implications of climate change for energy production and supply (oil and gas, thermal electricity, renewable energy, integrated perspectives, and indirect impacts on energy systems). A comprehensive resource for community planners and researchers, it discusses future risk-management strategies surrounding water treatment, heating or cooling, and mitigation that the country can utilize in its energy consumption. The authors analyze findings from their own research and practice to arrive at conclusions about vulnerabilities, risks, and impact concerns for different aspects of U.S. energy supply and use. Global and national policy contexts are informed by these efforts to create energy options and choices.

Rich in science and case studies, Climate Change and Energy Supply and Use offers decision makers and stakeholders a substantial basis from which to make informed choices that will affect energy risk-management in the decades to come.

[more]

front cover of Climate Change and Infrastructure, Urban Systems, and Vulnerabilities
Climate Change and Infrastructure, Urban Systems, and Vulnerabilities
Technical Report for the U.S. Department of Energy in Support of the National Climate Assessment
Thomas J. Wilbanks and Steven Fernandez
Island Press, 2014
Hurricane Irene ruptured a Baltimore sewer main, resulting in 100 million gallons of raw sewage flooding the local watershed. Levee failures during Hurricane Katrina resulted in massive flooding which did not recede for months. With temperatures becoming more extreme, and storms increasing in magnitude, American infrastructure and risk-management policies require close examination in order to decrease the damage wrought by natural disasters. Climate Change and Infrastructure, Urban Systems, and Vulnerabilities addresses these needs by examining how climate change affects urban buildings and communities, and determining which regions are the most vulnerable to environmental disaster. It looks at key elements of urban systems, including transportation, communication, drainage, and energy, in order to better understand the damages caused by climate change and extreme weather. How can urban systems become more resilient? How can citizens protect their cities from damage, and more easily rebound from destructive storms? This report not only breaks new ground as a component of climate change vulnerability and impact assessments but also highlights critical research gaps in the material. Implications of climate change are examined by assessing historical experience as well as simulating future conditions.
 
Developed to inform the 3rd National Climate Assessment, and a landmark study in terms of its breadth and depth of coverage and conducted under the auspices of the U.S. Department of Energy, Climate Change and Infrastructure, Urban Systems, and Vulnerabilities examines the known effects and relationships of climate change variables on American infrastructure and risk-management policies. Its rich science and case studies will enable policymakers, urban planners, and stakeholders to develop a long-term, self-sustained assessment capacity and more effective risk-management strategies.
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Climate Change and Pacific Islands
Indicators and Impacts: Report for the 2012 Pacific Islands Regional Climate Assessment
Edited by Victoria Keener with contributions from John J. Marra, Melissa L. Finucane, Deanna Spooner, and Margaret H. Smith
Island Press, 2013
Prepared for the 2013 National Climate Assessment and a landmark study in terms of its breadth and depth of coverage, Climate Change and the Pacific Islands was developed by the Pacific Islands Regional Climate Assessment, a collaborative effort engaging federal, state, and local government agencies, non-government organizations, academician, businesses, and community groups to inform and prioritize their activities in the face of a changing climate. The book assesses the state of knowledge about climate change indicators, impacts, and adaptive capacity of the Hawaiian archipelago and the US-Affiliated Pacific Islands.
 
The book provides the basis for understanding the key observations and impacts from climate change in the region, including the rise in surface air and sea-surface temperatures, along with sea levels, and the changes in ocean chemistry, rainfall amount and distribution, weather extremes, and widespread ecosystem changes.
 
Rich in science and case studies, it examines the latest climate change impacts, scenarios, vulnerabilities, and adaptive capacity and offers decision makers and stakeholders a substantial basis from which to make informed choices that will affect the well-being of the region’s inhabitants in the decades to come.
[more]

front cover of Climate Change in the Great Lakes Region
Climate Change in the Great Lakes Region
Navigating an Uncertain Future
Thomas Dietz
Michigan State University Press, 2012

People living in the Great Lakes region are already feeling the effects of a changing climate. Shifts in seasonal temperatures and precipitation patterns could have dramatic impacts on the economy, ecology, and quality of life. In this illuminating and thorough volume, leading scholars address the challenge of preparing for climate change in the region, where decision makers from various sectors—government, agriculture, recreation, and tourism—must increasingly be aware of the need to incorporate climate change into their short- and long-term planning. The chapters in this revealing book, written by some of the foremost climate change scholars in North America, outline the major trends in the climate of the Great Lakes region, how humans might cope with the uncertainty of climate change impacts, and examples of on-the-ground projects that have addressed these issues.

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front cover of Climate Change in the Midwest
Climate Change in the Midwest
A Synthesis Report for the National Climate Assessment
Edited by Julie A. Winkler, Jeffrey A. Andersen, Jerry L. Hatfield, David Bidwell, and Daniel Brown
Island Press, 2013
Developed to inform the 2013 National Climate Assessment, and a landmark study in terms of its breadth and depth of coverage and conducted under the auspices of the U.S. Global Change Research Program, Climate Change in the Midwest examines the known effects and relationships of climate change variables on the eight states that make up the region.
 
This state of the art assessment comes from a broad range of experts in academia, private industry, state and local governments, NGOs, professional societies, and impacted communities. It highlights past climate trends, projected climate change and vulnerabilities, and impacts to specific sectors.

Rich in science and case studies, it examines the latest climate change impacts, scenarios, vulnerabilities, and adaptive capacity and offers decision makers and stakeholders a substantial basis from which to make informed choices that will affect the well-being of the region’s inhabitants in the decades to come.

[more]

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Climate Change in the Northeast
A Sourcebook
Edited by Radley Horton
Island Press, 2015

Developed to inform the 2013 National Climate Assessment, and a landmark study in terms of its breadth and depth of coverage and conducted under the auspices of the U.S. Global Change Research Program, Climate Change in the Northeast examines the known effects and relationships of climate change variables on the Northeast region, encompassing New England, the Mid-Atlantic, Chesapeake Bay Area and Appalachia.

Prepared by a broad range of experts in academia, private industry, state and local governments, NGOs, professional societies, and impacted communities, it highlights past climate trends, projected climate change and vulnerabilities, and impacts to specific sectors and includes case studies on topics such as adaptive capacity and climate change effects.

Rich in science and case studies, it examines the latest climate change impacts, scenarios, vulnerabilities, and adaptive capacity and offers decision makers and stakeholders a substantial basis from which to make informed choices that will affect the well-being of the region’s inhabitants in the decades to come.

[more]

front cover of Climate Change in the Northwest
Climate Change in the Northwest
Implications for Our Landscapes, Waters, and Communities
Edited by Meghan M. Dalton, Philip Mote, and Amy K. Snover
Island Press, 2013
Climate Change in the Northwest: Implications for Our Landscapes, Waters, and Communities is aimed at assessing the state of knowledge about key climate impacts and consequences to various sectors and communities in the northwest United States. It draws on a wealth of peer-reviewed literature, earlier state-level assessment reports conducted for Washington (2009) and Oregon (2010), as well as a risk-framing workshop. As an assessment, it aims to be representative (though not exhaustive) of the key climate change issues as reflected in the growing body of Northwest climate change science, impacts, and adaptation literature now available.

This report will serve as an updated resource for scientists, stakeholders, decision makers, students, and community members interested in understanding and preparing for climate change impacts on Oregon, Washington, and Idaho. This more detailed, foundational report is intended to support the key findings presented in the Northwest chapter of the Third National Climate Assessment. 
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front cover of Climate Change Policy
Climate Change Policy
A Survey
Edited by Stephen H. Schneider, Armin Rosencranz, and John O. Niles
Island Press, 2002

Questions surrounding the issue of climate change are evolving from "Is it happening?" to "What can be done about it?" The primary obstacles to addressing it at this point are not scientific but political and economic; nonetheless a quick resolution is unlikely.

Ignorance and confusion surrounding the issue -- including a lack of understanding of climate science, its implications for the environment and society, and the range of policy options available -- contributes to the political morass over dealing with climate change in which we find ourselves. Climate Change Policy addresses that situation by bringing together a wide range of new writings from leading experts that examine the many dimensions of the topics most important in understanding climate change and policies to combat it. Chapters consider:

  • climate science in historical perspective
  • analysis of uncertainties in climate science and policy
  • the economics of climate policy
  • North-South and intergenerational equity issues
  • the role of business and industry in climate solutions
  • policy mechanisms including joint implementation, emissions trading, and the so-called clean development mechanism
Regardless of the fate of the Kyoto Protocol, the issues raised in that debate will persist as new climate protection regimes emerge; this volume treats most of those topics. Tying the chapters together is a shared conclusion that climate change is a real and serious problem, and that we as a society have an obligation not merely to adapt to it but to mitigate it in whatever intelligent ways we can develop. Cost-effectiveness is not disdained, but neither is the imperative for valuing species threatened by rapid climate change.
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Climate Change
The Ipcc Response Strategies
; Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
Island Press, 1991

Climate Change is the report of Working Group III of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), established in 1988 by the World Meteorological Organization and UNEP to address the threat of global warming on an international scale.

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Climate in Motion
Science, Empire, and the Problem of Scale
Deborah R. Coen
University of Chicago Press, 2018
Today, predicting the impact of human activities on the earth’s climate hinges on tracking interactions among phenomena of radically different dimensions, from the molecular to the planetary. Climate in Motion shows that this multiscalar, multicausal framework emerged well before computers and satellites. Extending the history of modern climate science back into the nineteenth century, Deborah R. Coen uncovers its roots in the politics of empire-building in central and eastern Europe. She argues that essential elements of the modern understanding of climate arose as a means of thinking across scales in a state—the multinational Habsburg Monarchy, a patchwork of medieval kingdoms and modern laws—where such thinking was a political imperative. Led by Julius Hann in Vienna, Habsburg scientists were the first to investigate precisely how local winds and storms might be related to the general circulation of the earth’s atmosphere as a whole. Linking Habsburg climatology to the political and artistic experiments of late imperial Austria, Coen grounds the seemingly esoteric science of the atmosphere in the everyday experiences of an earlier era of globalization. Climate in Motion presents the history of modern climate science as a history of “scaling”—that is, the embodied work of moving between different frameworks for measuring the world. In this way, it offers a critical historical perspective on the concepts of scale that structure thinking about the climate crisis today and the range of possibilities for responding to it. 
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The Climate of History in a Planetary Age
Dipesh Chakrabarty
University of Chicago Press, 2021
For the past decade, historian Dipesh Chakrabarty has been one of the most influential scholars addressing the meaning of climate change. Climate change, he argues, upends long-standing ideas of history, modernity, and globalization. The burden of The Climate of History in a Planetary Age is to grapple with what this means and to confront humanities scholars with ideas they have been reluctant to reconsider—from the changed nature of human agency to a new acceptance of universals.

Chakrabarty argues that we must see ourselves from two perspectives at once: the planetary and the global. This distinction is central to Chakrabarty’s work—the globe is a human-centric construction, while a planetary perspective intentionally decenters the human. Featuring wide-ranging excursions into historical and philosophical literatures, The Climate of History in a Planetary Age boldly considers how to frame the human condition in troubled times. As we open ourselves to the implications of the Anthropocene, few writers are as likely as Chakrabarty to shape our understanding of the best way forward.
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Climate of the Southeast United States
Variability, Change, Impacts, and Vulnerability
Edited by Keith Ingram
Island Press, 2013
Prepared for the 2013 National Climate Assessment and a landmark study in terms of its breadth and depth of coverage, Climate of the Southeast United States is the result of a collaboration among three Regional Integrated Sciences and Assessments Centers: the Southeast Climate Consortium; the Carolinas Regional Sciences and Assessments; and the Southern Climate Impacts Planning Program; with contributions from numerous local, state, federal, and nongovernmental agencies to develop a comprehensive, state of the art look at the effects of climate change in the region. 

The book summarizes the scientific literature with respect to climate impacts on the Southeast United States, including 11 southern states to the east of the Mississippi River, Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands; reviews the historic climate, current climate, and the projected future climate of the region; and describes interactions with important sectors of the Southeast and cross-sectoral issues, namely climate change mitigation, adaptation, and education and outreach.

Rich in science and case studies, it examines the latest climate change impacts, scenarios, vulnerabilities, and adaptive capacity and offers decision makers and stakeholders a substantial basis from which to make informed choices that will affect the well-being of the region’s inhabitants in the decades to come.

[more]

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Clouds
Nature and Culture
Richard Hamblyn
Reaktion Books, 2017
Clouds have been objects of delight and fascination throughout human history, their fleeting magnificence and endless variety having inspired scientists and daydreamers alike. Described by Aristophanes as “the patron goddesses of idle men,” clouds and the ever-changing patterns they create have long symbolized the restlessness and unpredictability of nature, and yet they are also the source of life-giving rains. In this book, Richard Hamblyn examines clouds in their cultural, historic, and scientific contexts, exploring their prevalence in our skies as well as in our literature, art, and music.
           
As Hamblyn shows, clouds function not only as a crucial means of circulating water around the globe but also as a finely tuned thermostat regulating the planet’s temperature. He discusses the many different kinds of clouds, from high, scattered cirrus clouds to the plump thought-bubbles of cumulus clouds, even exploring man-made clouds and clouds on other planets. He also shows how clouds have featured as meaningful symbols in human culture, whether as ominous portents of coming calamities or as ethereal figures giving shape to the heavens, whether in Wordsworth’s poetry or today’s tech speak. Comprehensive yet compact, cogent and beautifully illustrated, this is the ultimate guidebook to those shapeshifters of the sky.
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front cover of Coastal Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerabilities
Coastal Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerabilities
A Technical Input to the 2013 National Climate Assessment
Virginia Burkett and Margaret Davidson
Island Press, 2013
Developed to inform the 2013 National Climate Assessment, and a landmark study in terms of its breadth and depth of coverage and conducted under the auspices of the U.S. Global Change Research Program, Coastal Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerabilities examines the known effects and relationships of climate change variables on the coasts of the U.S.
 
This state of the art assessment comes from a broad range of experts in academia, private industry, state and local governments, NGOs, professional societies, and impacted communities. It includes case studies on topics such as adaptive capacity; climate change effects on. It highlights past climate trends, projected climate change and vulnerabilities, and impacts to specific sectors.
 
Rich in science and case studies, it examines the latest climate change impacts, scenarios, vulnerabilities, and adaptive capacity for nine major coastal regions of the United States and provides essential guidance for decision-makers – as well as environmental academics, professionals, and advocates – who seek to better understand how climate variability and change impact the US coasts and its communities.
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A Cold Welcome
The Little Ice Age and Europe’s Encounter with North America
Sam White
Harvard University Press, 2020

Cundill History Prize Finalist
Longman–History Today Prize Finalist
Winner of the Roland H. Bainton Book Prize


“Meticulous environmental-historical detective work.”
Times Literary Supplement

When Europeans first arrived in North America, they faced a cold new world. The average global temperature had dropped to lows unseen in millennia. The effects of this climactic upheaval were stark and unpredictable: blizzards and deep freezes, droughts and famines, winters in which everything froze, even the Rio Grande. A Cold Welcome tells the story of this crucial period, taking us from Europe’s earliest expeditions in unfamiliar landscapes to the perilous first winters in Quebec and Jamestown. As we confront our own uncertain future, it offers a powerful reminder of the unexpected risks of an unpredictable climate.

“A remarkable journey through the complex impacts of the Little Ice Age on Colonial North America…This beautifully written, important book leaves us in no doubt that we ignore the chronicle of past climate change at our peril. I found it hard to put down.”
—Brian Fagan, author of The Little Ice Age

“Deeply researched and exciting…His fresh account of the climatic forces shaping the colonization of North America differs significantly from long-standing interpretations of those early calamities.”
New York Review of Books

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Comparative Climatology of Terrestrial Planets
Edited by Stephen J. Mackwell, Amy A. Simon-Miller, Jerald W. Harder, and Mark A. Bullock
University of Arizona Press, 2014
The early development of life, a fundamental question for humankind, requires the presence of a suitable planetary climate. Our understanding of how habitable planets come to be begins with the worlds closest to home. Venus, Earth, and Mars differ only modestly in their mass and distance from the Sun, yet their current climates could scarcely be more divergent. Only Earth has abundant liquid water, Venus has a runaway greenhouse, and evidence for life-supporting conditions on Mars points to a bygone era. In addition, an Earth-like hydrologic cycle has been revealed in a surprising place: Saturn’s cloud-covered satellite Titan has liquid hydrocarbon rain, lakes, and river networks. 
 
Deducing the initial conditions for these diverse worlds and unraveling how and why they diverged to their current climates is a challenge at the forefront of planetary science. Through the contributions of more than sixty leading experts in the field, Comparative Climatology of Terrestrial Planets sets forth the foundations for this emerging new science and brings the reader to the forefront of our current understanding of atmospheric formation and climate evolution. Particular emphasis is given to surface-atmosphere interactions, evolving stellar flux, mantle processes, photochemistry, and interactions with the interplanetary environment, all of which influence the climatology of terrestrial planets. From this cornerstone, both current professionals and most especially new students are brought to the threshold, enabling the next generation of new advances in our own solar system and beyond.

Contents

Part I: Foundations
Jim Hansen
Mark Bullock
Scot Rafkin
Caitlin Griffith
Shawn Domagal-Goldman and Antigona Segura
Kevin Zahnle

Part II: The Greenhouse Effect and Atmospheric Dynamics
Curt Covey
G. Schubert and J. Mitchell
Tim Dowling
Francois Forget and Sebastien Lebonnois
Vladimir Krasnopolsky
Adam Showman

Part III: Clouds, Hazes, and Precipitation
Larry Esposito
A. Määttänen, K. Pérot, F. Montmessin, and A. Hauchecorne
Nilton Renno
Zibi Turtle
Mark Marley

Part IV: Surface-Atmosphere Interactions
Colin Goldblatt
Teresa Segura et al.
John Grotzinger
Adrian Lenardic
D. A. Brain, F. Leblanc, J. G. Luhmann, T. E. Moore, and F. Tian

Part V: Solar Influences on Planetary Climate
Aaron Zent
Jerry Harder
F. Tian, E. Chassefiere, F. Leblanc, and D. Brain
David Des Marais
[more]

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CYGNSS Handbook
2022
Darren McKague
Michigan Publishing Services, 2022
The updated and expanded 2022 edition.
[more]

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Deadly Season
Analysis of the 2011 Tornado Outbreaks
Kevin M. Simmons and Daniel Sutter
American Meteorological Society, 2012
In 2011, despite continued developments in forecasting, tracking, and warning technology, the United States was hit by the deadliest tornado season in decades. More than 1,200 tornadoes touched down, shattering communities and their safety nets, and killing more than 500 people—a death toll unmatched since 1953.
Drawing on the unique analysis described in their first book, Economic and Societal Impacts of Tornadoes, economists Kevin M. Simmons and Daniel Sutter here examine the factors that contributed to the outcomes of such tornadoes as the mid-April outbreak that devastated communities in North Carolina, the “Super Outbreak” across the southern and eastern United States in late April, and the single, mile-wide funnel that touched down in Joplin, Missouri, in late May. In the course of their study the authors identify patterns and anomalies, and reconsider previous assertions about the effectiveness of the Doppler radar and storm warning systems. Their conclusions, as well their assessment of early recovery efforts, are aimed at helping community leaders and policy-makers keep vulnerable populations safer in the future.
[more]

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A Deadly Wind
The 1962 Columbus Day Storm
John Dod
Oregon State University Press, 2018

The Columbus Day Storm of 1962 was a freak of nature, a weather outlier with deadly winds topping one hundred miles per hour. The storm killed dozens, injured hundreds, damaged more than fifty thousand homes, and leveled enough timber to build one million homes. To find an equally ferocious storm of its kind, fast-forward fifty years and cross the continent to Superstorm Sandy’s 2012 attack on the East Coast. While Superstorm Sandy was predicted days in advance, the Columbus Day Storm caught ill-equipped weather forecasters by surprise.

This unrivalled West Coast windstorm fueled the Asian log export market, helped give birth to the Oregon wine industry, and influenced the 1962 World Series. It remains a cautionary tale and the Pacific Northwest benchmark for severe windstorms in this era of climate change and weather uncertainty. From its genesis in the Marshall Islands to its final hours on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, the storm plowed an unparalleled path of destruction.

In A Deadly Wind, veteran journalist John Dodge tells a compelling story spiced with human drama, Cold War tension, and Pacific Northwest history. This is a must-read for the tens of thousands of storm survivors, for history buffs, and for anyone interested in the intersection of severe weather events and climate change.

[more]

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Disasters and Democracy
The Politics Of Extreme Natural Events
Rutherford H. Platt
Island Press, 1999

In recent years, the number of presidential declarations of “major disasters” has skyrocketed. Such declarations make stricken areas eligible for federal emergency relief funds that greatly reduce their costs. But is federalizing the costs of disasters helping to lighten the overall burden of disasters or is it making matters worse? Does it remove incentives for individuals and local communities to take measures to protect themselves? Are people more likely to invest in property in hazardous locations in the belief that, if worse comes to worst, the federal government will bail them out?

Disasters and Democracy addresses the political response to natural disasters, focusing specifically on the changing role of the federal government from distant observer to immediate responder and principal financier of disaster costs.

[more]

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The Discovery of Global Warming
Spencer R. Weart
Harvard University Press, 2008

The award-winning book is now revised and expanded.

In 2001 an international panel of distinguished climate scientists announced that the world was warming at a rate without precedent during at least the last ten millennia, and that warming was caused by the buildup of greenhouse gases from human activity. The story of how scientists reached that conclusion—by way of unexpected twists and turns—was the story Spencer Weart told in The Discovery of Global Warming. Now he brings his award-winning account up to date, revised throughout to reflect the latest science and with a new conclusion that shows how the scientific consensus caught fire among the general world public, and how a new understanding of the human meaning of climate change spurred individuals and governments to action.

[more]

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Economic and Societal Impacts of Tornadoes
Kevin M. Simmons and Daniel Sutter
American Meteorological Society, 2011

For almost a decade, economists Kevin M. Simmons and Daniel Sutter have been studying the economic impacts and social consequences of the approximately 1,200 tornadoes that touch down across the United States annually. During this time, Simmons and Sutter have been compiling information from sources such as the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the U.S. Census in order to examine the casualties caused by tornadoes and to evaluate the National Weather Service’s efforts to reduce these casualties. In Economic and Societal Impacts of Tornadoes, Simmons and Sutter present their findings. This analysis will be extremely useful to anyone studying meteorology and imperative for anyone working in emergency disaster management.

[more]

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El Niño, Catastrophism, and Culture Change in Ancient America
Daniel H. Sandweiss
Harvard University Press, 2008
El Niño is an extreme climate perturbation that periodically changes weather throughout the globe, often with dire consequences. First recognized in Peru, El Niño events are best known and documented there. This book summarizes research on the nature of El Niño events in the Americas and details specific historic and prehistoric patterns in Peru and elsewhere. By also looking at other catastrophic natural events in the ancient New World, the book illustrates how scientific archaeology can serve pure research as well as provide information for contemporary issues.
[more]

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Facing Catastrophe
Robert R. M. Verchick
Harvard University Press, 2012

As Hurricane Katrina vividly revealed, disaster policy in the United States is broken and needs reform. What can we learn from past disasters—storms, floods, earthquakes, tsunamis, landslides, and wildfires—about preparing for and responding to future catastrophes? How can these lessons be applied in a future threatened by climate change?

In this bold contribution to environmental law, Robert Verchick argues for a new perspective on disaster law that is based on the principles of environmental protection. His prescription boils down to three simple commands: Go Green, Be Fair, and Keep Safe. “Going green” means minimizing exposure to hazards by preserving natural buffers and integrating those buffers into artificial systems like levees or seawalls. “Being fair” means looking after public health, safety, and the environment without increasing personal and social vulnerabilities. “Keeping safe” means a more cautionary approach when confronting disaster risks.

Verchick argues that government must assume a stronger regulatory role in managing natural infrastructure, distributional fairness, and public risk. He proposes changes to the federal statutes governing environmental impact assessments, wetlands development, air emissions, and flood control, among others. Making a strong case for more transparent governmental decision-making, Verchick offers a new vision of disaster law for the next generation.

[more]

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Fatal Isolation
The Devastating Paris Heat Wave of 2003
Richard C. Keller
University of Chicago Press, 2015
In a cemetery on the southern outskirts of Paris lie the bodies of nearly a hundred of what some have called the first casualties of global climate change. They were the so-called abandoned victims of the worst natural disaster in French history, the devastating heat wave that struck in August 2003, leaving 15,000 dead. They died alone in Paris and its suburbs, and were then buried at public expense, their bodies unclaimed. They died, and to a great extent lived, unnoticed by their neighbors--their bodies undiscovered in some cases until weeks after their deaths.

Fatal Isolation tells the stories of these victims and the catastrophe that took their lives. It explores the multiple narratives of disaster--the official story of the crisis and its aftermath, as presented by the media and the state; the life stories of the individual victims, which both illuminate and challenge the ways we typically perceive natural disasters; and the scientific understandings of disaster and its management. Fatal Isolation is both a social history of risk and vulnerability in the urban landscape and a story of how a city copes with emerging threats and sudden, dramatic change.
[more]

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Father Benito Viñes
The 19th-Century Life and Contributions of a Cuban Hurricane Observer and Scientist
Luis E. Ramos Guadalupe
American Meteorological Society, 2014
Before Doppler radar and broadcast weather reports, Spanish-born Benito Viñes (1837–1893) spent decades observing the skies at Belen Observatory in colonial Cuba, routinely issuing weather reports and forecasts to local newspapers. And before storm trackers and emergency alerts, Viñes made it his mission to teach the public what he was learning about the weather. He developed the first network of weather observation stations in the Caribbean, and his research laid the groundwork for the hurricane warning systems we use today. His sometimes eerily accurate hurricane forecasts helped save many lives—earning him the nickname “the Hurricane Priest.”

Father Benito Viñes is a fascinating look at the life of a man who worked on the cutting edge of weather science while still remaining devoted to his religious life. It explores Viñes as both pioneer in the study of tropical meteorology and a colonial Jesuit priest. With notes that put his life into modern context, this book puts a much deserved spotlight on a figure who played a crucial role in making our lives safer.
[more]

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A Field Guide to Snow
Matthew Sturm
University of Alaska Press, 2020
People love snow. They love to ski and sled on it, snowshoe through it, and watch it fall from the sky. They love the way it blankets a landscape, making it look tranquil and beautiful. Few people, however, know how snow works. What makes it possible for us to slip and slide over, whether that’s falling on sidewalks or skiing down a mountain? What makes it cling to branches and street signs? What qualities of snow lead to avalanches?

In A Field Guide to Snow, veteran snow scientist Matthew Sturm answers those questions and more. Drawing on decades of study, he explains in clear and simple ways how and why snow works the way it does. The perfect companion a ski trip or a hike in the snowy woods, A Field Guide to Snow will give you a new appreciation for the science behind snow’s beauty.
 
[more]

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Floods, Droughts, and Climate Change
Michael Collier and Robert H. Webb
University of Arizona Press, 2002
No one in America would deny that the weather has changed drastically in our lifetime. We read about El Niño and La Niña, but how many of us really understand the big picture beyond our own front windows or even the headlines on the Weather Channel? Hydrologists and climatologists have long been aware of the role of regional climate in predicting floods and understanding droughts. But with our growing sense of a variable climate, it is important to reassess these natural disasters not as isolated events but as related phenomena.

This book shows that floods and droughts don't happen by accident but are the products of patterns of wind, temperature, and precipitation that produce meteorologic extremes. It introduces the mechanics of global weather, puts these processes into the longer-term framework of climate, and then explores the evolution of climatic patterns through time to show that floods and droughts, once considered isolated "acts of God," are often related events driven by the same forces that shape the entire atmosphere.

Michael Collier and Robert Webb offer a fresh, insightful look at what we know about floods, droughts, and climate variability—and their impact on people—in an easy-to-read text, with dramatic photos, that assumes no previous understanding of climate processes. They emphasize natural, long-term mechanisms of climate change, explaining how floods and droughts relate to climate variability over years and decades. They also show the human side of some of the most destructive weather disasters in history.

As Collier and Webb ably demonstrate, "climate" may not be the smooth continuum of meteorologic possibilities we supposed but rather the sum of multiple processes operating both regionally and globally on different time scales. Amid the highly politicized discussion of our changing environment, Floods, Droughts, and Climate Change offers a straightforward scientific account of weather crises that can help students and general readers better understand the causes of climate variability and the consequences for their lives.
[more]

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Global Fever
How to Treat Climate Change
William H. Calvin
University of Chicago Press, 2008
Every decade since 1950 has seen more floods and more wildfires on every continent. Deserts are expanding, coral reefs are dying, fisheries are declining, hurricanes are strengthening. The debate about climate change is over: there’s no question that global warming has made the Earth sick, and the outlook for the future calls for ever-warmer temperatures and deadlier results. Something must be done—but how quickly?
            With Global Fever, William H. Calvin delivers both a clear-eyed diagnosis and a strongly worded prescription. In striking, straightforward language, he first clearly sets out the current state of the Earth’s warming climate and the disastrous possibilities ahead should we continue on our current path. Increasing temperatures will kill off vegetation and dry up water resources, and their loss will lead, in an increasingly destructive feedback loop, to even more warming. Resource depletion, drought, and disease will follow, leading to socioeconomic upheaval—and accompanying violence—on a scale barely conceivable.
            It is still possible, Calvin argues, to avoid such a dire fate. But we must act now, aggressively funneling resources into jump-starting what would amount to a third industrial revolution, this one of clean technologies—while simultaneously expanding our use of existing low-emission technologies, from nuclear power to plug-in hybrid vehicles, until we achieve the necessary scientific breakthroughs.
            Passionately written, yet thoroughly grounded in the latest climate science, Global Fever delivers both a stark warning and an ambitious blueprint for saving the future of our planet.
[more]

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Great Plains Regional Technical Input Report
Dennis S. Ojima, Jean Steiner, Shannon McNeely, Karen Cozetto, and Amber N. Childress
Island Press, 2015
Prepared for the 2013 National Climate Assessment and a landmark study in terms of its breadth and depth of coverage, Great Plains Regional Technical Input Report is the result of a collaboration among numerous local, state, federal, and nongovernmental agencies to develop a comprehensive, state of the art look at the effects of climate change on the eight states that encompass the Great Plains region.
The Great Plains states are already experiencing the impacts of a changing climate, and will likely continue to experience warming temperatures, more extreme precipitation events, reduced snow and ice cover, and rising relative sea levels. The book presents a review of the historic, current, and projected future climate of the region; describes interactions with important sectors of the Northeast and examines cross-sectoral issues, namely climate change mitigation, adaptation, and education and outreach.
Rich in science and case studies, it examines the latest climate change impacts, scenarios, vulnerabilities, and adaptive capacity and offers decision makers and stakeholders a substantial basis from which to make informed choices that will affect the well-being of the region's inhabitants in the decades to come.
[more]

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Ground Truth
A Guide to Tracking Climate Change at Home
Mark L. Hineline
University of Chicago Press, 2018
Before you read this book, you have homework to do. Grab a notebook, go outside, and find a nearby patch of nature. What do you see, hear, feel, and smell? Are there bugs, birds, squirrels, deer, lizards, frogs, or fish, and what are they doing? What plants are in the vicinity, and in what ways are they growing? What shape are the rocks, what texture is the dirt, and what color are the bodies of water? Does the air feel hot or cold, wet or dry, windy or still? Everything you notice, write it all down.

We know that the Earth’s climate is changing, and that the magnitude of this change is colossal. At the same time, the world outside is still a natural world, and one we can experience on a granular level every day. Ground Truth is a guide to living in this condition of changing nature, to paying attention instead of turning away, and to gathering facts from which a fuller understanding of the natural world can emerge over time.

Featuring detailed guidance for keeping records of the plants, invertebrates, amphibians, birds, and mammals in your neighborhood, this book also ponders the value of everyday observations, probes the connections between seasons and climate change, and traces the history of phenology—the study and timing of natural events—and the uses to which it can be put. An expansive yet accessible book, Ground Truth invites readers to help lay the groundwork for a better understanding of the nature of change itself. 
 
[more]

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Humanity's Moment
A Climate Scientist's Case for Hope
Joëlle Gergis
Island Press, 2023
When climate scientist Joëlle Gergis set to work on the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Sixth Assessment Report, the research she encountered kept her up at night. Through countless hours spent with the world’s top scientists to piece together the latest global assessment of climate change, she realized that the impacts were occurring faster than anyone had predicted.

In Humanity’s Moment, Joëlle takes us through the science in the IPCC report with unflinching honesty, explaining what it means for our future, while sharing her personal reflections on bearing witness to the heartbreak of the climate emergency unfolding in real time. But this is not a lament for a lost world. It is an inspiring reminder that human history is an endless tug-of-war for social justice. We are each a part of an eternal evolutionary force that can transform our world.

Joëlle shows us that the solutions we need to live sustainably already exist—we just need the social movement and political will to create a better world. Humanity’s Moment is a climate scientist’s guide to rekindling hope, and a call to action to restore our relationship with ourselves, each other, and our planet.
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Hurricane Pioneer
Memoirs of Bob Simpson
Robert H. Simpson with Neal M. Dorst
American Meteorological Society, 2014
In 1951, Robert H. Simpson lifted off in a specially-equipped plane, flying directly into the path of a storm that would send most people running for cover. For more than four hours he observed Typhoon Marge from its eerily calm eye, later describing it in The Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society as “a coliseum of clouds whose walls on one side rose vertically and on the other were banked like the galleries in a great opera house.”

For Simpson this was just one of his many pioneering explorations of hurricanes and extreme storms. Over his decades-long career his research led to great leaps in our understanding of tropical meteorology and our approach to hurricane safety. He was the first director of the National Hurricane Research Project and the second director of the National Hurricane Center, though he may be best known as co-creator of the widely used Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale, familiar to anyone who has heard a reporter use the words “category five.”

Simpson’s memoirs take readers from his experience with the Corpus Christi hurricane of 1919 to his travels to study weather across the globe. Along the way he crosses paths with other weather greats, including his trailblazing wife, meteorologist Joanne Simpson. Hurricane Pioneer is a riveting first-hand account at a revolutionary time in meteorology.
[more]

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Ice Ages
Solving the Mystery
John Imbrie and Katherine Palmer Imbrie
Harvard University Press, 1986

This book tells the exciting story of the ice ages—what they were like, why they occurred, and when the next one is due. The solution to the ice age mystery originated when the National Science Foundation organized the CLIMAP project to study changes in the earth’s climate over the past 700,000 years. One of the goals was to produce a map of the earth during the last ice age. Scientists examined cores of sediment from the Indian Ocean bed and deciphered a continuous history for the past 500,000 years. Their work ultimately confirmed the theory that the earth’s irregular orbital motions account for the bizarre climatic changes which bring on ice ages.

This is a tale of scientific discovery and the colorful people who participated: Louis Agassiz, the young Swiss naturalist whose geological studies first convinced scientists that the earth has recently passed through an ice age; the Reverend William Buckland, an eccentric but respected Oxford professor who fought so hard against the ice-age theory before accepting it; James Croll, a Scots mechanic who educated himself as a scientist and first formulated the astronomic theory of ice ages; Milutin Milankovitch, the Serbian mathematician who gave the astronomic theory its firm quantitative foundation; and the many other astronomers, geochemists, geologists, paleontologists, and geophysicists who have been engaged for nearly a century and a half in the pressing search for a solution to the ice-age mystery.

[more]

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Immeasurable Weather
Meteorological Data and Settler Colonialism from 1820 to Hurricane Sandy
Sara J. Grossman
Duke University Press, 2023
In Immeasurable Weather Sara J. Grossman explores how environmental data collection has been central to the larger project of settler colonialism in the United States. She draws on an extensive archive of historical and meteorological data spanning two centuries to show how American scientific institutions used information about the weather to establish and reinforce the foundations of a white patriarchal settler society. Grossman outlines the relationship between climate data and state power in key moments in the history of American weather science, from the nineteenth-century public data-gathering practices of settler farmers and teachers and the automation of weather data during the Dust Bowl to the role of meteorological satellites in data science’s integration into the militarized state. Throughout, Grossman shows that weather science reproduced the natural world as something to be measured, owned, and exploited. This data gathering, she contends, gave coherence to a national weather project and to a notion of the nation itself, demonstrating that weather science’s impact cannot be reduced to a set of quantifiable phenomena.
[more]

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The Impact of Global Warming on Texas
Second edition
Edited by Jurgen Schmandt, Gerald R. North, and Judith Clarkson
University of Texas Press, 2011

When The Impact of Global Warming on Texas was first published in 1995, it discussed climate change as a likely future phenomenon, predicted by scientific studies. This entirely rewritten second edition presents evidence that early climate change impacts can now be observed and identifies the threats climate change will pose to Texas through the year 2050. It also offers the hopeful message that corrective action, if taken now, can avert unmanageable consequences.

The book begins with a discussion of climate science and modeling and the information that can be derived from these sources for Texas. The authors follow this with an analysis of actual climate trends in the various Texas climate regions, including a predicted rise in temperatures of 5.4 degrees F (plus or minus 1.8 F) by the end of the century. This could lead to less rainfall and higher evaporation, especially in regions that are already dry. Other important effects include possible changes in El Niño (climate variability) patterns and hurricane behaviors. Taking into account projected population growth, subsequent chapters explore likely trends with respect to water availability, coastal impacts, and biodiversity.

The authors then look at the issues from a policy perspective, focusing on Texas's importance to the national economy as an energy producer, particularly of oil and gas. They recommend that Texas develop its own climate change policy to serve the goals of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, increasing energy independence, ensuring regional security, and improving management of water, air, land, and wildlife.

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Lightning Electromagnetics
Vernon Cooray
The Institution of Engineering and Technology, 2012
Lightning research is an interdisciplinary subject where several branches of engineering and physics converge. Lightning Electromagnetics is a book that caters for the needs of both physicists and engineers. It provides: The physicist with information on how to simulate: the charge generation in thunderclouds, different discharge processes in air that ultimately lead to a lightning flash, and the mechanism through which energetic radiation in the form of X-rays and Gamma rays are produced by lightning flashes; The power engineer with several numerical tools to study the interaction of lightning flashes with power transmission and distribution systems; The telecommunication engineer with numerical procedures with which to calculate the electromagnetic fields generated by lightning flashes and their interactions with overhead and underground telecommunication systems; The electromagnetic specialist with the basic theory necessary to simulate the propagation of lightning electromagnetic fields over the surface of the Earth; The atmospheric scientist with numerical procedures to quantify interactions between lightning flashes and the Earth's atmosphere, including the production of NOx by lightning flashes occurring in the atmosphere. This book also contains a chapter on the stimulation of visual phenomena in humans by electromagnetic fields of lightning flashes, which is essential reading for those who are interested in ball lightning.
[more]

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Living on the Real World
How Thinking and Acting like Meteorologists Will Help Save the Planet
William H. Hooke
American Meteorological Society, 2014
Every day meteorologists sift through a deluge of information to make predictions that help us navigate our daily lives. Instead of being overwhelmed by the data and possibilities, they focus on small bits of information while using frequent collaboration to make decisions. With climate change a reality, William H. Hooke suggests we look to meteorologists as a model for how we can solve the twenty-first century’s most urgent environmental problems.

Living on the Real World explains why we should be approaching environmental issues collaboratively, each taking on a challenging aspect and finding solutions to small parts of the larger problem. It outlines current crises brought about by climate change and extreme weather, including effects on food, water, and energy, and then explores the ways we can tackle these problems together. Blending science with a philosophical approach, Hooke offers a clear-eyed analysis as well as an inspiring call to action. Everyone from scientists to politicians, educators to journalists, and businesses large and small, can—and must—participate in order to save the planet for generations to come.
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The Lost Art of Finding Our Way
John Edward Huth
Harvard University Press, 2013

Long before GPS, Google Earth, and global transit, humans traveled vast distances using only environmental clues and simple instruments. John Huth asks what is lost when modern technology substitutes for our innate capacity to find our way. Encyclopedic in breadth, weaving together astronomy, meteorology, oceanography, and ethnography, The Lost Art of Finding Our Way puts us in the shoes, ships, and sleds of early navigators for whom paying close attention to the environment around them was, quite literally, a matter of life and death.

Haunted by the fate of two young kayakers lost in a fog bank off Nantucket, Huth shows us how to navigate using natural phenomena—the way the Vikings used the sunstone to detect polarization of sunlight, and Arab traders learned to sail into the wind, and Pacific Islanders used underwater lightning and “read” waves to guide their explorations. Huth reminds us that we are all navigators capable of learning techniques ranging from the simplest to the most sophisticated skills of direction-finding. Even today, careful observation of the sun and moon, tides and ocean currents, weather and atmospheric effects can be all we need to find our way.

Lavishly illustrated with nearly 200 specially prepared drawings, Huth’s compelling account of the cultures of navigation will engross readers in a narrative that is part scientific treatise, part personal travelogue, and part vivid re-creation of navigational history. Seeing through the eyes of past voyagers, we bring our own world into sharper view.

[more]

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Make It Rain
State Control of the Atmosphere in Twentieth-Century America
Kristine C. Harper
University of Chicago Press, 2017
Weather control. Juxtaposing those two words is enough to raise eyebrows in a world where even the best weather models still fail to nail every forecast, and when the effects of climate change on sea level height, seasonal averages of weather phenomena, and biological behavior are being watched with interest by all, regardless of political or scientific persuasion. But between the late nineteenth century—when the United States first funded an attempt to “shock” rain out of clouds—and the late 1940s, rainmaking (as it had been known) became weather control. And then things got out of control.

In Make It Rain, Kristine C. Harper tells the long and somewhat ludicrous history of state-funded attempts to manage, manipulate, and deploy the weather in America. Harper shows that governments from the federal to the local became helplessly captivated by the idea that weather control could promote agriculture, health, industrial output, and economic growth at home, or even be used as a military weapon and diplomatic tool abroad. Clear fog for landing aircraft? There’s a project for that. Gentle rain for strawberries? Let’s do it! Enhanced snowpacks for hydroelectric utilities? Check. The heyday of these weather control programs came during the Cold War, as the atmosphere came to be seen as something to be defended, weaponized, and manipulated. Yet Harper demonstrates that today there are clear implications for our attempts to solve the problems of climate change.
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Masters of Uncertainty
Weather Forecasters and the Quest for Ground Truth
Phaedra Daipha
University of Chicago Press, 2015
Though we commonly make them the butt of our jokes, weather forecasters are in fact exceptionally good at managing uncertainty. They consistently do a better job calibrating their performance than stockbrokers, physicians, or other decision-making experts precisely because they receive feedback on their decisions in near real time. Following forecasters in their quest for truth and accuracy, therefore, holds the key to the analytically elusive process of decision making as it actually happens.

In Masters of Uncertainty, Phaedra Daipha develops a new conceptual framework for the process of decision making, after spending years immersed in the life of a northeastern office of the National Weather Service. Arguing that predicting the weather will always be more craft than science, Daipha shows how forecasters have made a virtue of the unpredictability of the weather. Impressive data infrastructures and powerful computer models are still only a substitute for the real thing outside, and so forecasters also enlist improvisational collage techniques and an omnivorous appetite for information to create a locally meaningful forecast on their computer screens. Intent on capturing decision making in action, Daipha takes the reader through engrossing firsthand accounts of several forecasting episodes (hits and misses) and offers a rare fly-on-the-wall insight into the process and challenges of producing meteorological predictions come rain or come shine. Combining rich detail with lucid argument, Masters of Uncertainty advances a theory of decision making that foregrounds the pragmatic and situated nature of expert cognition and casts into new light how we make decisions in the digital age.
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Microwave Circuit Theory and Foundations of Microwave Metrology
Glenn F. Engen
The Institution of Engineering and Technology, 1992
No system in science or engineering can be successfully designed, analysed and specified unless it is backed up by precise quantitative measurements. This is particularly difficult in the field of microwaves where, more often than not, the parameter(s) of interest cannot be observed directly but must be inferred from the measurement of other related parameters. Although the advent of the automated network analyser has eliminated much of the previous drudgery, the problems of interpreting the digitally displayed information still remain. One purpose of this book is to provide the reader with a thorough understanding of the microwave circuit model and its limitations, and thus eliminate the many potential pitfalls that otherwise await the unwary experimenter.
[more]

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Midlatitude Synoptic Meteorology
Dynamics, Analysis, and Forecasting
Gary Lackmann
American Meteorological Society, 2011

The past decade has been characterized by remarkable advances in meteorological observation, computing techniques, and data-visualization technology. However, the benefit of these advances can only be fully realized with the introduction of a systematic, applied approach to meteorological education that allows well-established theoretical concepts to be applied to modernized observational and numerical datasets.

This textbook links theoretical concepts to modern technology and facilitates the meaningful application of concepts, theories, and techniques using real data. As such, it will both serve those planning careers in meteorological research and weather prediction, and provide a template for the application of modern technology in a classroom and laboratory setting.
 
Synoptic-dynamic meteorology, synoptically driven mesoscale phenomena, weather forecasting, and numerical weather prediction are covered in depth in this text, which is intended for undergraduates and beginning graduate students in the atmospheric sciences.


 

 
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An Observer's Guide to Clouds and Weather
A Northeastern Primer on Prediction
Toby Carlson, Paul Knight, and Celia Wyckoff
American Meteorological Society, 2014
Today, most people look down when they want to check the weather, peeking at cell phones or popping open a browser, instead of looking up at one of the most accessible weather predictors of all—the sky. Knowing what the atmosphere has in store without relying on technology can be a gratifying experience, and now with An Observer’s Guide to Clouds and Weather, it is also one that is easy to learn.

This informative and accessible guide walks readers through the basics of making weather predictions through understanding cloud types and sky formations. It explains, in nontechnical terms, the science behind the weather, connecting fundamental meteorological concepts with the processes that shape weather patterns. Readers will learn how to develop their powers of observation and hone their ability to make quick forecasts without complicated tools. Whether you're an amateur weather enthusiast or a beginning meteorology student, An Observer’s Guide to Clouds and Weather will help anyone who prefers looking up to looking it up.
[more]

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Oceans and Marine Resources in a Changing Climate
A Technical Input to the 2013 National Climate Assessment
Roger Griffis and Jennifer Howard
Island Press, 2013

Prepared for the 2013 National Climate Assessment and a landmark study in terms of its breadth and depth of coverage, Oceans and Marine Resources in a Changing Climate is the result of a collaboration among numerous local, state, federal, and nongovernmental agencies to develop a comprehensive, state of the art look at the effects of climate change on the oceans and marine ecosystems under U.S. jurisdiction.

This book provides an assessment of scientific knowledge of the current and projected impacts of climate change and ocean acidification on the physical, chemical, and biological components and human uses of marine ecosystems under U.S. jurisdiction. It also provides assessment of the international implications for the U.S. due to climate impacts on ocean ecosystems and of efforts to prepare for and adapt to climate and acidification impacts on ocean ecosystem, including
·         Climate-Driven Physical and Chemical Changes in Marine Ecosystems
·         Impacts of Climate Change on Marine Organisms
·         Impacts of Climate Change on Human Uses of the Ocean
·         International Implications of Climate Change
·         Ocean Management Challenges, Adaptation Approaches, and Opportunities in a Changing Climate
·         Sustaining the Assessment of Climate Impacts on Oceans and Marine Resources

Rich in science and case studies, it examines the latest climate change impacts, scenarios, vulnerabilities, and adaptive capacity and offers decision makers and stakeholders a substantial basis from which to make informed choices that will affect the well-being of the region’s inhabitants in the decades to come.


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Past Climates
Tree Thermometers, Commodities, and People
By Leona Marshall Libby
University of Texas Press, 1983

Leona Marshall Libby was a pioneer in modern climatic research, a field that gained great impetus in the late twentieth century because of the promise it holds for predicting future climatic trends. Libby’s work led to remarkable new procedures for investigating long-term changes in precipitation and temperature and thereby greatly expanding our knowledge of past climates.

As Professor Rainer Berger writes in his foreword:

 “In recent years, tree ring–based temperature data have been collected which go far beyond the records available to historians. These data can be analyzed by Fourier transforms which identify certain periodicities. . . . Climatic changes detected by tree rings have been checked against historic records. . . . The correspondence is astonishing. . . .  

“At present weather forecasting is becoming more accurate for periods on the order of days, weeks, and months. Climatic prognoses have also been attempted for very long times of tens of thousands of years. But the intermediate range in the decades and centuries has so far been an enigma. It is here where tree ring thermometry plays its trump cards.

 “. . . Its potential is enormous in assessing worldwide crop yields, water inventory, heating requirements, stockpiling policies, and construction planning as well as political and military prospects.”

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Picturing the Atmosphere
Photography and the Advancement of Atmospheric Science
Terrence R. Nathan
American Meteorological Society, 2021

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Reading the Skies
A Cultural History of English Weather, 1650-1820
Vladimir Jankovic
University of Chicago Press, 2001
From the time of Aristotle until the late eighteenth century, meteorology meant the study of "meteors"—spectacular objects in the skies beneath the moon, which included everything from shooting stars to hailstorms. In Reading the Skies, Vladimir Jankovic traces the history of this meteorological tradition in Enlightenment Britain, examining its scientific and cultural significance.

Jankovic interweaves classical traditions, folk/popular beliefs and practices, and the increasingly quantitative approaches of urban university men to understanding the wonders of the skies. He places special emphasis on the role that detailed meteorological observations played in natural history and chorography, or local geography; in religious and political debates; and in agriculture. Drawing on a number of archival sources, including correspondence and weather diaries, as well as contemporary pamphlets, tracts, and other printed sources reporting prodigious phenomena in the skies, this book will interest historians of science, Britain, and the environment.
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Restoring the Pitchfork Ranch
How Healing a Southwest Oasis Holds Promise for Our Endangered Land
A. Thomas Cole
University of Arizona Press, 2024
The Pitchfork Ranch is more than another dusty homestead tucked away in a corner of the Southwest. It is a place with a story to tell about the most pressing crisis to confront humankind. It is a place where one couple is working every day to right decades of wrongs. It is a place of inspiration and promise. It is an invitation to join the struggle for a better planet.

Restoring the Pitchfork Ranch tells the story of a decades-long habitat restoration project in southwestern New Mexico. A. Thomas Cole explains what inspired him and his wife, Lucinda, to turn their retirement into years dedicated to hard work and renewal. The book shares the past and present history of a very special ranch south of Silver City, which is home to a rare type of regional wetland, a fragile desert grassland ecosystem, archaeological sites, and a critical wildlife corridor in a drought-stricken landscape.

Today the 11,300 acres that make up the Pitchfork Ranch provide an important setting for carbon sequestration, wildlife habitats, and space for the reintroduction of endangered or threatened species. Restoring the Pitchfork Ranch weaves together stories of mine strikers, cattle ranching, and the climate crisis into an important and inspiring call to action. For anyone who has wondered how they can help, the Pitchfork Ranch provides an inspiring way forward.
 
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The Rising Sea
Orrin H. Pilkey and Rob Young
Island Press, 2011
On Shishmaref Island in Alaska, homes are being washed into the sea. In the South Pacific, small island nations face annihilation by encroaching waters. In coastal Louisiana, an area the size of a football field disappears every day. For these communities, sea level rise isn’t a distant, abstract fear: it’s happening now and it’s threatening their way of life.
 
In The Rising Sea, Orrin H. Pilkey and Rob Young warn that many other coastal areas may be close behind. Prominent scientists predict that the oceans may rise by as much as seven feet in the next hundred years. That means coastal cities will be forced to construct dikes and seawalls or to move buildings, roads, pipelines, and railroads to avert inundation and destruction.
 
The question is no longer whether climate change is causing the oceans to swell, but by how much and how quickly. Pilkey and Young deftly guide readers through the science, explaining the facts and debunking the claims of industry-sponsored “skeptics.” They also explore the consequences for fish, wildlife—and people.
 
While rising seas are now inevitable, we are far from helpless. By making hard choices—including uprooting citizens, changing where and how we build, and developing a coordinated national response—we can save property, and ultimately lives. With unassailable research and practical insights, The Rising Sea is a critical first step in understanding the threat and keeping our heads above water.
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The Rising Tide
Global Warming And World Sea Levels
Lynne T. Edgerton
Island Press, 1991

The Rising Tide is the first analysis of global warming and world sea level rise. It outlines state, national, and international actions to respond to the effects of global warming on coastal communities and ecosystems.

[more]

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A Scientific Peak
How Boulder Became a World Center for Space and Atmospheric Science
Joseph P. Bassi
American Meteorological Society, 2015
Scroll through a list of the latest incredible scientific discoveries and you might find an unexpected commonality—Boulder, Colorado. Once a Wild West city tucked where the Rocky Mountains meet the Great Plains, it is now home to some of the biggest names in science. Research centers, including the National Center for Atmospheric Research, National Institute of Standards and Technology, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, are based there, while IBM, Lockheed Martin, and Ball Aerospace would come to reside alongside a dynamic start-up community.

A Scientific Peak chronicles Boulder’s meteoric rise to eventually become “America’s Smartest City” and a leader in space and atmospheric sciences. In just two decades following World War II, a tenacious group of researchers, supported by groups from local citizenry to the State of Colorado, managed to convince the US government and some of the world’s scientific pioneers to make Boulder a center of the new space age. Joseph P. Bassi introduces us to the characters, from citizens to scientists, and the mix of politics, passion, and sheer luck at the start of Boulder’s transformation from “Scientific Siberia” to the research mecca it is today.
[more]

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Secrets of the Greatest Snow on Earth, Second Edition
Weather, Climate Change, and Finding Deep Powder in Utah's Wasatch Mountains and Around the World
Jim Steenburgh
Utah State University Press, 2023

Utah has long claimed to have the greatest snow on Earth—the state itself has even trademarked the phrase. In Secrets of the Greatest Snow on Earth, Jim Steenburgh investigates Wasatch weather, exposing the myths, explaining the reality, and revealing how and why Utah’s powder lives up to its reputation. Steenburgh also examines ski and snowboard regions beyond Utah, providing a meteorological guide to mountain weather and snow climates around the world.

Chapters explore mountain weather, avalanches and snow safety, historical accounts of weather events and snow conditions, and the basics of climate and weather forecasting. In this second edition, Steenburgh explains what creates the best snow for skiing and snowboarding using accurate and accessible language and 150 color photographs and illustrations, making Secrets of the Greatest Snow on Earth a helpful tool for planning vacations and staying safe during mountain adventures.

This edition is updated with two new chapters covering microclimates and climate change in greater depth. Steenburgh addresses the declining snowpack and the future of snow across the western United States, as well as the declining snow and ice in several regions of the world—the European Alps in particular. Snowriders, weather enthusiasts, meteorologists, students of snow science, and anyone who dreams of deep powder and bluebird skies will want to get their gloves on this new edition of Secrets of the Greatest Snow on Earth.

Praise for the first edition:
“Everything you always wanted to know about how snow forms and how to follow forecasts so you see
how much an”d where is in the book. It’s a must-have for any fan of snow, sure to get you excited about
winter, and give you a bevy of conversation topics for the chairlift ride.”

—Utah Adventure Journal

“For backcountry enthusiasts that find themselves infatuated with weather patterns, snow-water
equivalents, microclimates, and Utah, this book is a dream come true.”

—The Backcountry Skiing Blog

“Steenburgh shares a career’s worth of knowledge in this book. His love of both snow science and skiing
is obvious, and he adds humor and personality to the scientific discussion.”

—First Tracks!! Online Skiing Magazine

“When it comes to snow, the details—both small- and large-scale—do matter. If we all observed our
surroundings with as much curiosity and enthusiasm as Steenburgh, the world could be a much better-
tended place.”

—American Scientist

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Severe Storms and Society
Seeking Resilience and Understanding Human Behavior in Meteorology, the Weather Enterprise, and Publics
Jack R. Friedman, Daphne S. LaDue, Laura Myers, and Melissa J. Lamkin
American Meteorological Society, 2021

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Southern Rivers
Restoring America's Freshwater Biodiversity
R. Scot Duncan
University of Alabama Press
Explores the Southeast’s imperiled river systems and solutions for preserving them in the face of habitat loss, climate change, and extinction
 
Southern Rivers, by award-winning nature writer and biologist R. Scot Duncan, is a thoroughly crafted exploration of the perilous state of the Southeast’s rivers and the urgent need to safeguard their vitality. The region’s rivers are the epicenter of North American freshwater biodiversity and are the top global hotspot for important aquatic animals including mussels, turtles, snails, crayfish, and fish, many of which have made important contributions to southern life and culture.

Centuries of commercial development have impaired the region’s river systems, sacrificing biodiversity and compromising the rivers’ ability to provide resources essential to human life: drinking water, waste disposal, irrigation, navigation, recreation, power production, and more. Now, increased heat and drought caused by climate change are lowering water levels. As such threats increase, it may seem necessary to choose between nature conservation and human needs, but Duncan persuasively demonstrates that this is a false choice. Conservation enhances human life.

In the same engaging voice of an expert friend that won over thousands of readers of his earlier book, Southern Wonder: Alabama’s Surprising Biodiversity, Duncan explains the task of managing southeastern rivers and how river water quality affects the daily lives of the millions who hold these historic waterways dear. He shows how managing rivers wisely can meet the needs of biodiversity and humanity both. With Americans increasingly anxious about the onset of climate change and the accelerating extinction crisis, Southern Rivers illuminates actionable solutions.
 
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Storm
Nature and Culture
John Withington
Reaktion Books, 2016
Gales, cyclones, blizzards, tornados, and hurricanes—few things demonstrate the awesome power of nature like a good storm. Devastating, diverse, and sometimes appearing completely out of nowhere, storms are also a source of both scientific and aesthetic wonder. In this book, John Withington takes an in-depth and unique look at the nature of storms and the impact that they have—both physical and cultural—on our lives.
            Withington shows how storms have changed the course of human history. From Roman times to the modern day, he shows how their devastating effects have wiped out entire communities, changed the fates of battle, and even reset the entire planet. He also shows how beneficial they have been to us: as an important feature of our atmosphere and climate, but also as a source of inspiration for nearly every artist who has ever lived, from Homer to Rembrandt, in works from the Old Testament to Robinson Crusoe. Beautifully illustrated, this book offers a fascinating look at Earth’s most fearsome events.
 
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Strategic Choices for a Turbulent World
In Pursuit of Security and Opportunity
Andrew R. Hoehn
RAND Corporation, 2017
This report is the last of a six-volume series in which RAND explores the elements of a national strategy for the conduct of U.S. foreign policy. It analyzes U.S. strengths and weaknesses, and suggests adaptations for this new era of turbulence and uncertainty. The report offers three alternative strategic concepts and evaluates their underlying assumptions, costs, risks, and constraints.
[more]

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Synoptic-Dynamic Meteorology Lab Manual
Visual Exercises to Complement Midlatitude Synoptic Meteorology
Gary Lackmann, Brian E. Mapes, and Kevin R. Tyle
American Meteorological Society, 2017

One of the greatest challenges facing atmospheric science instructors is helping students link theoretical and mathematical concepts to the real atmosphere. The past decade has been characterized by remarkable advances in meteorological observation, computing techniques, and data-visualization technology. However, the benefit of these advances can only be fully realized with the introduction of a systematic, applied approach to meteorological education that allows well-established theoretical concepts to be used with modernized observational and numerical datasets.

This lab manual is a tool designed just for this purpose; it links theoretical concepts with groundbreaking visualization to elucidate concepts taught in the companion textbook by Gary Lackmann, Midlatitude Synoptic Meteorology, the most current text available on modern weather forecasting techniques. When used in concert with Lackmann’s book and its companion CD of lecture slides, this lab manual will guide students in using contemporary observational and visualization techniques to provide in-depth understanding of fundamental concepts and serve as a catalyst for student-led innovation and application. With topics considered in an order that reinforces and builds upon new knowledge in meteorological observation and analysis, these materials will help students to deepen their understanding of synoptic-dynamic meteorology, synoptically-driven mesoscale phenomena, numerical weather prediction, ensemble prediction, and more, and put this understanding into practice.

 
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Taken by Storm, 1938
A Social and Meteorological History of the Great New England Hurricane
Lourdes B. Avilés
American Meteorological Society, 2018
On September 21, 1938, one of the most powerful storms of the twentieth century came unannounced into the lives of New Yorkers and New Englanders, leaving utter devastation in its wake. The Great Hurricane, as it came to be known, changed everything from the landscape and its inhabitants’ lives, to Weather Bureau practices and the measure of relief New Englanders would receive in the final years of the Great Depression.

The storm formed near the Cape Verde Islands on September 10, but was not spotted until several days later, and was predicted by the understaffed Weather Bureau to head toward Florida. Junior forecaster Charlie Pierce correctly projected the northerly storm track, but senior meteorologists ignored his forecast, a mistake that cost many lives—including those of immigrants who had arrived to the Northeast in waves in the preceding decades. Updated for the 80th anniversary of the hurricane, this compelling history successfully weaves science, historical accounts, and social analyses to create a comprehensive picture of the most powerful and devastating hurricane to hit New England to date.
[more]

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Taken by Storm, 1938
A Social and Meteorological History of the Great New England Hurricane
Lourdes B. Avilés
American Meteorological Society, 2013

On September 21, 1938 one of the most powerful storms of the twentieth century came unannounced into the lives of New Yorkers and New Englanders, leaving utter devastation in its wake. The Great Hurricane, as it came to be known, changed everything, from the landscape and its inhabitants’ lives, to Weather Bureau practices, to the measure and kind of relief New Englanders would receive during the Great Depression and the resulting pace of regional economic recovery.

 
The storm formed near the Cape Verde Islands on September 10 but was not spotted until several days later, and was predicted by the understaffed Weather Bureau to head toward Florida. Junior forecaster Charlie Pierce correctly projected the northerly storm track, but senior meteorologists ignored his forecast, a mistake that cost many lives—including those of immigrants who had arrived to the Northeast in waves in the preceding decades. To be published on the storm’s 75th anniversary, this compelling history successfully weaves science, historical accounts, and social analyses to create a comprehensive picture of the most powerful and devastating hurricane to hit New England to date.
[more]

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The Thinking Person's Guide to Climate Change
Robert Henson
American Meteorological Society, 2014
Everybody can be a thinking person when it comes to climate change, and this book is a perfect roadmap.  Start a web search for “climate change” and the first three suggestions are “facts,” “news,” and “hoax.” The Thinking Person's Guide to Climate Change is rooted in the first, up to date on the second, and anything but the last. Produced by one of the most venerable atmospheric science organizations, it is a must-read for anyone looking for the full story on climate change.

Using global research and written with nonscientists in mind, the Guide breaks down the issues into straightforward categories: “Symptoms” covers signs such as melting ice and extreme weather, while “Science” lays out what we know and how we figured it out. “Debates” tackles the controversy and politics, while “Solutions” and “Actions” discuss what we can do as individuals and communities to create the best possible future. Full-color illustrations offer explanations of everything from how the greenhouse effect traps heat to which activities in everyday life emit the most carbon. Special-feature boxes zoom in on locations across the globe already experiencing the effects of a shifting climate.

The Thinking Person's Guide to Climate Change combines years of data with recent research, including conclusions from the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. This reference provides the most comprehensive, yet accessible, overview of where climate science stands today, acknowledging controversies but standing strong in its stance that the climate is changing— and something needs to be done.

The Thinking Person's Guide to Climate Change is a full update and revision of Robert Henson’s The Rough Guide to Climate Change and is now published through the American Meteorological Society, with distribution through University of Chicago Press. 
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The Thinking Person's Guide to Climate Change
Second Edition
Robert Henson
American Meteorological Society, 2019
Everybody can be a thinking person when it comes to climate change, and this book is a perfect roadmap.  Start a web search for “climate change” and the first three suggestions are “facts,” “news,” and “hoax.” The Thinking Person's Guide to Climate Change is rooted in the first, up to date on the second, and anything but the last. Produced by one of the most venerable atmospheric science organizations, it is a must-read for anyone looking for the full story on climate change.

Using global research and written with nonscientists in mind, the Guide breaks down the issues into straightforward categories: “Symptoms” covers signs such as melting ice and extreme weather, while “Science” lays out what we know and how we figured it out. “Debates” tackles the controversy and politics, while “Solutions” and “Actions” discuss what we can do as individuals and communities to create the best possible future. Full-color illustrations offer explanations of everything from how the greenhouse effect traps heat to which activities in everyday life emit the most carbon. Special-feature boxes zoom in on locations across the globe already experiencing the effects of a shifting climate.

The new edition of The Thinking Person's Guide to Climate Change has been thoroughly updated, including content on new global record highs, new research across the spectrum, and the Paris Agreement to cut greenhouse gases. This reference provides the most comprehensive, yet accessible, overview of where climate science stands today, acknowledging controversies but standing strong in its stance that the climate is changing—and something needs to be done.
[more]

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Water & Climate/Western U.S.
W Lewis
University Press of Colorado, 2003
Water and Climate in the Western United States highlights the opportunity for and necessity of change in management of water, the West's most crucial resource. As old policies and institutions fail to meet changing demands for and availability of w
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Waters of the World
The Story of the Scientists Who Unraveled the Mysteries of Our Oceans, Atmosphere, and Ice Sheets and Made the Planet Whole
Sarah Dry
University of Chicago Press, 2019
The compelling and adventurous stories of seven pioneering scientists who were at the forefront of what we now call climate science.

From the glaciers of the Alps to the towering cumulonimbus clouds of the Caribbean and the unexpectedly chaotic flows of the North Atlantic, Waters of the World is a tour through 150 years of the history of a significant but underappreciated idea: that the Earth has a global climate system made up of interconnected parts, constantly changing on all scales of both time and space. A prerequisite for the discovery of global warming and climate change, this idea was forged by scientists studying water in its myriad forms. This is their story.

Linking the history of the planet with the lives of those who studied it, Sarah Dry follows the remarkable scientists who summited volcanic peaks to peer through an atmosphere’s worth of water vapor, cored mile-thick ice sheets to uncover the Earth’s ancient climate history, and flew inside storm clouds to understand how small changes in energy can produce both massive storms and the general circulation of the Earth’s atmosphere. Each toiled on his or her own corner of the planetary puzzle. Gradually, their cumulative discoveries coalesced into a unified working theory of our planet’s climate.

We now call this field climate science, and in recent years it has provoked great passions, anxieties, and warnings. But no less than the object of its study, the science of water and climate is—and always has been—evolving. By revealing the complexity of this history, Waters of the World delivers a better understanding of our planet’s climate at a time when we need it the most.
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Weather, Climate, and the Geographical Imagination
Placing Atmospheric Knowledges
Martin Mahony and Samuel Randalls
University of Pittsburgh Press, 2020
As global temperatures rise under the forcing hand of humanity’s greenhouse gas emissions, new questions are being asked of how societies make sense of their weather, of the cultural values, which are afforded to climate, and of how environmental futures are imagined, feared, predicted, and remade. Weather, Climate, and Geographical Imagination contributes to this conversation by bringing together a range of voices from history of science, historical geography, and environmental history, each speaking to a set of questions about the role of space and place in the production, circulation, reception, and application of knowledges about weather and climate. The volume develops the concept of “geographical imagination” to address the intersecting forces of scientific knowledge, cultural politics, bodily experience, and spatial imaginaries, which shape the history of knowledges about climate.
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Weather Forecaster to Research Scientist
My Career in Meteorology
Robert M. Atlas
American Meteorological Society, 2022
This memoir follows the sixty-year meteorology career of Robert M. Atlas.
 
As a young child, Robert M. Atlas would often look up at the sky, observe the clouds, and ask his parents questions about the weather. That early interest sparked a career in meteorology that took place during a period of rapid development in the field. Weather Forecaster to Research Scientist follows his decades-long career and his innovative research, which led to improvements in the understanding and prediction of extreme weather.

Atlas’s journey begins with his start as an apprentice forecaster for the US Weather Bureau during a time when satellite meteorology and operational numerical weather prediction were just in their infancy. Weather Forecaster to Research Scientist also traces his experiences as an operational forecaster in the US Air Force, discusses his pioneering work on ocean surface winds using satellites, and describes his leadership of scientific organizations within NASA and NOAA as well as his experiences teaching at several universities. An engaging account of a distinguished career, this book will appeal to students, educators, weather forecasters, scientists, and weather enthusiasts alike.
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Weather in the Courtroom
Memoirs from a Career in Forensic Meteorology
William H. Haggard
American Meteorological Society, 2016
As director of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Climatic Data Center in the late 1960s and early ’70s, William H. Haggard witnessed an explosion in the number of requests from attorneys needing weather data for their cases. But while the Center offered data certified by the Department of Commerce that could be submitted as evidence in a court of law, government meteorologists could not be released from work to interpret this data in the courtroom. In their place, pioneering forensic meteorologists stepped in to serve as expert witnesses.

For a society enthralled by courtroom drama, forensics, and natural disasters, Weather in the Courtroom is a perfect storm: an exciting inside scoop on legendary court cases where the weather may—or may not—have played a crucial role. Haggard explores both the meteorological facts and human stories of a variety of high-profile cases among the hundreds in which, after retiring from the government, he served as an expert witness. Were the disappearance of Alaskan Congressman Nick Begich’s plane on October 16, 1972; the collapse of Tampa Bay’s Skyway Bridge on May 9, 1980; and the crash of Delta Flight 191 in Dallas/Fort Worth on August 2, 1985, natural or human-caused disasters? Haggard’s recounting of these and other litigations reveals just how critical the interpretation of weather and climate data in the courtroom is to our understanding of what happened—and who, if anyone, is at fault.
 
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Weather on the Air
A History of Broadcast Meteorology
Robert Henson
American Meteorological Society, 2010

From low humor to high drama, TV weather reporting has encompassed an enormous range of styles and approaches, triggering chuckles, infuriating the masses, and at times even saving lives. In Weather on the Air,meteorologist and science journalist Robert Henson covers it all—the people, technology, science, and show business that combine to deliver the weather to the public each day.

            
The first comprehensive history of its kind, Weather on the Air explores the many forces that have shaped weather broadcasts over the years, including the long-term drive to professionalize weathercasting, the complex relations between government and private forecasters, and the effects of climate-change science and the Internet on today’s broadcasts. Dozens of photos and anecdotes accompany Henson’s more than two decades of research to document the evolution of weathercasts, from their primitive beginnings on the radio to the high-gloss, graphics-laden segments we watch on television every morning.


This engaging study will be an invaluable tool for students of broadcast meteorology and mass communication and an entertaining read for anyone fascinated by the public face of weather.

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Weather, Science, and the Environment in Colonial Malaya
Fiona Clare Williamson
University of Pittsburgh Press, 2025
A new addition to the University of Pittsburgh Press Intersections Series
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Wildlife Responses to Climate Change
North American Case Studies
Edited by Stephen H. Schneider and Terry L. Root; Foreword by Mark Van Putten
Island Press, 2001

Wildlife Responses to Climate Change is the culmination of a three-year project to research and study the impacts of global climate change on ecosystems and individual wildlife species in North America. In 1997, the National Wildlife Federation provided fellowships to eight outstanding graduate students to conduct research on global climate change, and engaged leading climate change experts Stephen H. Schneider and Terry L. Root to advise and guide the project. This book presents the results, with chapters describing groundbreaking original research by some of the brightest young scientists in America. The book presents case studies that examine:

  • ways in which local and regional climate variables affect butterfly populations and habitat ranges
  • how variations in ocean temperatures have affected intertidal marine species
  • the potential effect of reduced snow cover on plants in the Rocky Mountains
  • the potential effects of climate change on the distribution of vegetation in the United States
  • how climate change may increase the susceptibility of ecosystems to invasions of non-native species
  • the potential for environmental change to alter interactions between a variety of organisms in whitebark pine communities of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem
Also included are two introductory chapters by Schneider and Root that discuss the rationale behind the project and offer an overview of climate change and its implications for wildlife.

Each of the eight case studies provides important information about how biotic systems respond to climatic variables, and how a changing climate may affect biotic systems in the future. They also acknowledge the inherent complexities of problems likely to arise from changes in climate, and demonstrate the types of scientific questions that need to be explored in order to improve our understanding of how climate change and other human disturbances affect wildlife and ecosystems.

Wildlife Responses to Climate Change is an important addition to the body of knowledge critical to scientists, resource managers, and policymakers in understanding and shaping solutions to problems caused by climate change. It provides a useful resource for students and scientists studying the effects of climate change on wildlife and will assist resource managers and other wildlife professionals to better understand factors affecting the species they are striving to conserve.

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front cover of Wind
Wind
Nature and Culture
Louise M. Pryke
Reaktion Books, 2023
A natural and cultural history of wind from ancient deity to Twister.
 
By turns creative and destructive, wind spreads seeds, fills sails, and disperses the energy of the sun. Worshipped since antiquity, wind has molded planets, determined battles, and shaped the evolution of life on earth—yet this invisible element remains intangible and unpredictable. In this book, Louise M. Pryke explores wind’s natural history as well as its cultural life in myth, religion, art, and literature. Beyond these ancient imaginings, Pryke also traces how wind inspired modern scientific innovations and appeared in artistic works as diverse as the art of Van Gogh, the poetry of Keats, and the blockbuster film.
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front cover of Wisconsin's Weather and Climate
Wisconsin's Weather and Climate
Joseph M. Moran
University of Wisconsin Press, 2003
The land that is now called Wisconsin has a place in weather history. Its climate has ranged from tropical to polar over hundreds of millions of years—and even today, that’s the seeming difference between July and January here. And Wisconsinites have played key roles in advancing the science of meterology and climatology: Increase Lapham helped found the National Weather Service in the nineteenth century; Eric Miller was the first to broadcast regular weather reports on the radio in the 1920s; Verner Suomi pioneered tracking weather by satellite; and Reid Bryson has been a leader in studying global climate change.
Wisconsin's Weather and Climate is written for weather buffs, teachers, students, outdoor enthusiasts, and those working in fields, lakes, and forests for whom the weather is a daily force to be reckoned with. It examines the physical features of Wisconsin that shape the state’s climate—topography, mid-latitude location, and proximity to Lakes Superior and Michigan—and meteorological phenomena that affect climate, such as atmospheric circulation and air mass frequency. Authors Joseph M. Moran and Edward J. Hopkins trace the evolution of methods of weather observation and forecasting that are so important for agriculture and Great Lakes commerce, and they explain how Wisconsin scientists use weather balloons, radar, and satellites to improve forecasting and track climate changes. They take readers through the seasonal changes in weather in Wisconsin and give an overview of what past climate changes might tell us about the future.
Appendices provide climatic data for Wisconsin, including extremes of temperature, snowfall, and precipitation at selected stations in the state. The authors also list sources for further information.

Vignettes throughout the book provide fascinating weather lore:

o Why there are cacti in Wisconsin
o The famous Green Bay Packers–Dallas Cowboys "Ice Bowl" game of 1967
o The Army Signal Corps’ ban on the word tornado
o Advances in snow-making technology
o The decline of the Great Lakes ice industry
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