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Finding Higher Ground: Adaptation in the Age of Warming Hardcover – June 7, 2011


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Beacon Press; First Edition edition (June 7, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0807085987
  • ISBN-13: 978-0807085981
  • Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 5.8 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #892,785 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Seidl (Early Spring) transcends wrangling about the reality of climate change by focusing on those already adapting to shifts in temperature: flora, fauna, and farmers. In less than a decade, mizuma plants in California evolved to the shortened growing season caused by extreme drought. Yukon red squirrels are giving birth more than two weeks earlier to take advantage of global warming-induced increases in spruce cone crops. Vermont winegrowers "alert to the changes in regional weather and climate" are establishing new grape stock for resilience. Geese, salmon, and eels are even abandoning migration when easier winters make staying more advantageous than travel. But some species are less flexible, needing human assistance to relocate, and human migrations are increasing in response to drought and flooding. Observing her neighbors "striving for resiliency" by creating alternatives to a fossil fuel–based culture, Seidl optimistically proposes that humans might also evolve as we adapt, extending our empathy to nonhuman life vulnerable to climate change: "Coming to the aid of species unable to adapt to the Age of Warming, we will revise our role in the ecological world from agents of relentless environmental degradation... to agents who create the conditions conducive to life." (June)
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Review

"A...lucidly presented commitment to science education...From solar panels, to wood stoves, to natural drying techniques for laundry, [Finding Higher Ground] is a very personal account of adaptation.”—National Geographic's "Daily News"

"Despite its small size and informal tone, the book contains a large number of well-documented examples of responses to climate change, and could serve as a good entry point for deeper explorations into climate change adaptation.”—Choice Magazine
 “Here’s the playbook for the years ahead: loving but savvy, with open eyes and with open heart, Amy Seidl talks us through the possibilities we have on the planet we’ve created. A landmark book.”—Bill McKibben, founder of 350.org and author of Eaarth: Making a Life on a Tough New Planet

“This is a wonderful and necessary book. If you’ve been avoiding the climate change story out of fear that it would catapult you into helplessness and depression, biologist Amy Seidl has just taken away your last defense. Passionate, knowledgeable, and full of unflinching courage, Finding Higher Ground exhorts us to open our eyes to ‘the agitation of change.’ We can’t adapt with them shut.”—Sandra Steingraber, author of Raising Elijah: Protecting Our Children in an Age of Environmental Crisis
 
“As an ecologist, a gardener, and a mother of two, Amy Seidl understands all too well the urgent challenges of climate change. But in Finding Higher Ground, her focus is finally on persistence and hope. For Seidl, that means combining a scientifically informed and spiritually charged appreciation for how living systems are already evolving with a determination to forge a more responsible and sustainable way of life for her own family.  I feel grateful for this tough, timely, and encouraging book.”—John Elder, author of Reading the Mountains of Home
 
“Not since Helen and Scott Nearing penned their testaments to the ‘Good Life’ has a Vermont author given us such a thoughtful, hopeful, and pragmatic guide to living lightly—and well—on this long-suffering planet. Amy Seidl draws on solid science, interesting characters (both human and otherwise), and a rich trove of personal experience to pave a sane way forward for us in this, the Age of Warming. A well-researched, thoroughly enjoyable introduction to local adaptation in the face of global change.”—Curt Stager, author of Deep Future: The Next 100,000 Years of Life on Earth
 
“Seidl’s glass-half-full optimism is a welcome change from the many fatalistic prognostications of the future.”—Kirkus Reviews

More About the Author

Amy Seidl is an ecologist, writer, and teacher. She is the author of Early Spring: An Ecologist and Her Children Wake to a Warming World. Amy teaches at the University of Vermont and lives near Burlington with her husband and their children in a solar-powered home.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this book for a reading program and the very first reader, used it in a program for about 25 women. She really found it very helpful and those of us who were at the program were much informed by the time the presentation was over. The book arrived in primo condition.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Joe Turner on July 3, 2013
Format: Hardcover
I am reading a copy from my local public library (C)2011.

Ms Seidl evidently doesn't understand the difference between
(kilo, mega,tera) watts (POWER units) and
(kilo, mega,tera) watt-hours (ENERGY UNITS).

Also the book has no index.

A second edition is needed to correct these issues.
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Sam Clemens on July 31, 2013
Format: Hardcover
She is the typical tree-hugger we all remember from the 70's, straight from the idyllic Vermont countryside in her totally green cabin, growing her own food, generating her own power, rhapsodizing over every adaption the little critters in her world have made, and happy about her choices even while considering the overwhelming changes that will occur on this planet over the next century. I suppose I should give credit to people like her, but I can't help but think those folks will regret their pledge to shelter refugees from ecologically devastated areas. Vermont in a hundred years will probably be one big shantytown with everyone picking through huge garbage piles and killing each other over squatting rights. This book isn't a 'how to', but a 'why we should', and she does give some interesting info for those who 'want to'. But the pessimist in me says 'why bother anymore'.
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