Six degrees Our future on a hotter planet

Mark Lynas, 1973-

Book - 2008

In accessible journalistic prose, author Lynas distills what environmental scientists predict about the consequences of human pollution for the next hundred years, degree by degree. At 1 degree Celsius, most coral reefs and many mountain glaciers will be lost. A 3-degree rise would spell the collapse of the Amazon rainforest, disappearance of Greenland's ice sheet, and the creation of deserts across the Midwestern United States and southern Africa. A 6-degree increase would eliminate most l...ife on Earth, including much of humanity. Based on authoritative scientific articles, the latest computer models, and information about past warm events in Earth history, this promises to be an eye-opening warning that humanity will ignore at its peril.--From publisher description.

Saved in:

System Under Maintenance

Our Library Management System is currently under maintenance.

Holdings and item availability information is currently unavailable. Please accept our apologies for any inconvenience this may cause and contact us for further assistance:

refmail@icpl.org

2nd Floor Show me where

551.6/Lynas
1 / 1 copies available
Location Call Number   Status
2nd Floor 551.6/Lynas Checked In
Subjects
Published
Washington, D.C. : National Geographic c2008.
Language
English
Physical Description
335 p. ; 24 cm
Bibliography
Includes bibliographical references (p. [305]-328) and index.
ISBN
9781426202131
142620213X
1426203853
9781426203855
Main Author
Mark Lynas, 1973- (-)
  • One degree
  • Two degrees
  • Three degrees
  • Four degrees
  • Five degrees
  • Six degrees.
Review by Booklist Reviews

*Starred Review* How best to convey the facts about global warming? Many scientists present intricately detailed histories of life on Earth matched by a chronicle of the evolution of climate studies. Journalist Lynas (High Tide, 2004) takes a more concrete approach. After perusing thousands of scientific articles, he extracted the most arresting information and organized it into a compulsively readable "degree-by-degree guide to our planet's future" so that readers with little scientific knowledge can clearly envision exactly what may happen as the average global temperature ascends. With Dante's Inferno as his template, Lynas takes us to circles of hell already manifest on Earth and predicted for the near future, explaining the dire consequences of disappearing mountain glaciers, destruction of the Amazon rain forests, and thawing permafrost. With the addition of each degree, the unraveling of biodiversity and loss of freshwater and fertile soil worsens. Humankind may survive these changes, but most of the planet's other species will perish, and much of the Earth will be uninhabitable. Is this preventable? Lynas offers hard-nosed calculations about the level of carbon emissions that will keep the temperature rise to two degrees, and estimates that we have seven years to get it right. Copyright 2007 Booklist Reviews.

Review by Choice Reviews

Six Degrees takes readers on a journey through the impacts of global warming from one to six degrees, one degree at a time. While science writer and environmentalist Lynas admits that this is a difficult undertaking given that the results of climate-change research are not typically presented in one-degree segments, he does an admirable job of presenting a broad range of impacts within this context. The assemblage of so many impacts in one place, and presented as a function of temperature change, is both inventive and sobering. The book's greatest strength is its exclusive reliance on peer-reviewed scientific literature, which lends credence to the author's claims about projected changes and their likely impacts. An additional strength is the consistent discussion of the projected warming in the context of the interwoven political and social fabric that ultimately determines how climate change impacts humans. Six Degrees would benefit from greater use of graphics, particularly in areas where scientific comprehension is most important, but the book does not suffer tremendously in their absence. Includes a useful list of references to support the material presented throughout the book. Summing Up: Highly recommended. All undergraduate students, professionals, and general readers. Copyright 2009 American Library Association.

Review by School Library Journal Reviews

Adult/High School— Lynas has gathered global-warming information from an array of authoritative scientists: geologists, glaciologists, oceanographers, climate scientists, and paleoclimatologists, as well as "major scientific projections" from computer modelers. He divides his findings into six main chapters representing the consequences of a one- to six-degree shift in temperature rise. More factual than hysterical and using accessible language, the author portrays a sobering, but broad and fascinating, view of the problem. He discusses not only the environmental consequences of melting icecaps, ocean warming, coral reef bleaching, CO2 emissions, deforestation, and severe weather, but also cultural and economic reverberations-the result of population shifts, animal migrations, and societal collapse. Through computer-modeling simulations he looks back into the past (the Pliocene, the Mayan civilization) and projects into the future for CO2 comparisons. His premise: the problem is now at global scale and will not just impact the disappearance of one group alone as it did the Maya. Claiming that solutions must be political, and that it is too late for quick fixes using renewable energy sources or technology, he concludes with some cautionary possible solutions: relocalization of goods and services, less consumption, global-scale carbon rationing, and a "2 degree increase target." Anyone studying climate change will find this a helpful reference as much current research has been precompiled and interpreted within one resource.—Jodi Mitchell, Berkeley Public Library, CA [Page 163]. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

Features a degree-by-degree account of how the effects of global climate change will impact people, the environment, and natural species in every region of the world, and offers recommendations on what can be done to manage the problem.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

An unflinching study of the impact of global warming on Earth's climate and what it means for human life in every region of the world, from the destruction of coral reefs and mountain glaciers to the collapse of the Amazon rainforest and the rise of deserts in the U.S., reveals what we must do now to prevent environmental catastrophe. 20,000 first printing.

Review by Publisher Summary 3

Possibly the most graphic treatment of global warming that has yet been published, Six Degrees is what readers of Al Gore's best-selling An Inconvenient Truth or Ross Gelbspan's Boiling Point will turn to next. Written by the acclaimed author of High Tide, this highly relevant and compelling book uses accessible journalistic prose to distill what environmental scientists portend about the consequences of human pollution for the next hundred years. In 2001, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released a landmark report projecting average global surface temperatures to rise between 1.4 degrees and 5.8 degrees Celsius (roughly 2 to 10 degrees Fahrenheit) by the end of this century. Based on this forecast, author Mark Lynas outlines what to expect from a warming world, degree by degree. At 1 degree Celsius, most coral reefs and many mountain glaciers will be lost. A 3-degree rise would spell the collapse of the Amazon rainforest, disappearance of Greenland's ice sheet, and the creation of deserts across the Midwestern United States and southern Africa. A 6-degree increase would eliminate most life on Earth, including much of humanity. Based on authoritative scientific articles, the latest computer models, and information about past warm events in Earth history, Six Degrees promises to be an eye-opening warning that humanity will ignore at its peril.

Review by Publisher Summary 4

British journalist and environmental activist Lynas has written two previous books and numerous magazine and newspaper articles on environmental issues, and is a well-known public speaker on the subject of climate change. As a resident of Oxfordshire, he experienced firsthand England's devastating floods of 2007, attributed by many to global warming. In his latest text, he draws on the full range of state-of-the-art research and sophisticated computer models to create a degree-by-degree picture of the planet's future as a result of global warming, based on estimates ranging from one to six degrees of temperature increase. In a concluding chapter he discusses the brief window of opportunity remaining for humans to make the necessary changes to be able to manage climate change effectively. Academic but accessible to the general reader. Annotation ©2008 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Review by Publisher Summary 5

Possibly the most graphic treatment of global warming that has yet been published, Six Degrees is what readers of Al Gore's best-selling An Inconvenient Truth or Ross Gelbspan's Boiling Point will turn to next. Written by the acclaimed author of High Tide, this highly relevant and compelling book uses accessible journalistic prose to distill what environmental scientists portend about the consequences of human pollution for the next hundred years. In 2001, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released a landmark report projecting average global surface temperatures to rise between 1.4 degrees and 5.8 degrees Celsius (roughly 2 to 10 degrees Fahrenheit) by the end of this century. Based on this forecast, author Mark Lynas outlines what to expect from a warming world, degree by degree. At 1 degree Celsius, most coral reefs and many mountain glaciers will be lost. A 3-degree rise would spell the collapse of the Amazon rainforest, disappearance of Greenland's ice sheet, and the creation of deserts across the Midwestern United States and southern Africa. A 6-degree increase would eliminate most life on Earth, including much of humanity. Based on authoritative scientific articles, the latest computer models, and information about past warm events in Earth history, Six Degrees promises to be an eye-opening warning that humanity will ignore at its peril.