Summary of Climate Peril

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Rating

8

Qualities

  • Analytical
  • Comprehensive
  • Scientific

Recommendation

Reflecting the overwhelming scientific consensus – if erring on the side of pessimism – this important overview provides a wake-up call for all citizens of Earth. Climate expert John J. Berger presents a scary but scientific view of climate change. His treatise does not indulge in earnest save-the-planet rhetoric; instead, he offers a cold, well-crafted dose of science. Berger provides readers with more than enough background to understand the scientific information he presents and to make educated decisions about climate change, although he is, based on the science, somewhat vague about timelines. From prolonged allergy seasons in the US to entire countries that could wind up under water, Berger documents and explains each prediction. Demonstrating professional due diligence, he gathers quotes, research and supporting statements from numerous sources and notable colleagues although the very technical, information-dense result isn’t easy reading or easy analysis to accept. While always politically neutral, getAbstract recommends his sobering thesis to anyone who needs to understand climate change, including investors, NGOs, policy makers and entrepreneurs.

About the Author

John J. Berger, author and editor of 11 books on climate change and related issues, has consulted for the National Academy of Sciences, the US Congress and other major organizations.

 

Summary

Earth’s Climate in History – Natural and Unnatural Changes

Planet Earth experiences natural climate cycles over the course of hundreds of thousands of years. Nature’s “autopilot” drives global cycles. And, yes, natural forces may cause warming or cooling for various reasons. For instance, at times the Earth has been slightly further from or closer to the sun. The more solar radiation Earth receives, the warmer it is. Understanding this natural system allows science to measure humanity’s impact on climate change with accuracy.

Earth’s orbit undergoes cycles that can lead to changes in solar energy and, subsequently, global climate. Even with changes in reflectivity or “albedo” – including solar insolation (the amount of energy coming in) and related elements – manufactured greenhouse gases remain the most important causes of warming and cooling cycles. The higher the concentration of carbon dioxide and methane in the atmosphere, the higher global temperatures will be. Concentrations of greenhouse gases are rising faster than any other climate factor. Levels of CO2 could climb up to 1,200ppm by the year 2100. That’s more than four times the levels prior to...


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