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The Resilient Earth: Science, Global Warming and the Future of Humanity Paperback – October 29, 2008


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 404 pages
  • Publisher: BookSurge Publishing; 1 edition (October 29, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 143921154X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1439211540
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.9 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,247,171 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Inside Flap

The Resilient Earth had its genesis in a number of events spanning several years. The authors have been friends and colleagues for more than three decades and, while they have often discussed writing a book together, the timing never seemed quite right. Then, at the start of 2007, the debate surrounding human-caused global warming reached a crescendo. Those who questioned the extent and causes of global warming, other than human CO2 emissions, were labeled "climate criminals," "industry stooges," and "traitors" by ecological activists. Those on the other side of the issue used terms like "hoax" and "scam."

The shrill level of the "debate" was driven home when Hoffman attended a business meeting. A co-worker asked a seemingly innocent question: "Doug, you're a scientist, what do you think about this global warming thing?" Hoffman framed a fairly neutral reply--"I don't think it's as bad as portrayed in the media, certainly we shouldn't ruin our economy in a panic." Hearing this, the senior executive present made a sarcastic, scatological remark regarding the offered opinion and stormed out of the room. Taken aback by this emotional reaction, Hoffman resolved to look more deeply into the subject of global warming.

In a matter of days, Hoffman was on the phone to Simmons suggesting that the time to write that often talked about book had arrived, and the topic should be the science of global warming--the real science, not the pseudo-science being reported in the popular media. Simmons immediately agreed and a long distance collaboration, linking coastal Texas and a log cabin in Arkansas, began. The more deeply we delved into the "facts" portrayed in the media the more concerned we became--not from fear of impending ecological disaster, but from the total lack of scientific objectivity, rationality and detachment exhibited by those on both sides of the global warming issue.

About the Author

Authors Doug L. Hoffman and Allen Simmons both have strong backgrounds in science and computer modeling. Hoffman has a PhD in Computer Science from the U. of North Carolina where he did research in Molecular Dynamics Simulations and high-speed comparison methods for RNA, DNA and protein sequences. Currently he serves as senior grid architect for a major IP company and as an adjunct Professor of Computer Science at U. of Central Arkansas and Hendrix College. Simmons has a BSEE from U. of Miami and wrote the computer systems software for the world¿s first weather satellites-TIROS-Television/Infra-Red Observation Satellite. After TIROS, he spent 12 years working with scientists and engineers on NIMBUS weather satellites which collected meteorological, atmospheric, geological, and oceanographic data. NIMBUS had a profound impact on knowledge of Earth¿s dynamic behavior. On the island of St. Croix, USVI, Simmons and Hoffman developed a computer system to track objects at great ocean depths.

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Great book, well written..no kooky rants here.
Michael B. Williams
The book takes you through the history of earth science and the state of our current science.
Amazon Customer
For those wishing to know the facts, read this book.
David Home

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

29 of 35 people found the following review helpful By NYC Lady on June 17, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Until I read the "The Resilient Earth" by coauthors Hoffman and Simmons, I did not spend much time thinking about the issue of human-caused global warming. I knew there were those who claimed humans were destroying our planet and there were others who did not agree, and challenged that principle. Now, after reading this wonderful book, I do care about our planet, but I have become somewhat skeptical of the idea that humans can change the climate to the point that we are doomed. In Chapter 1, the first lines in the book read: "Scientists observe nature, then develop theories that describe their observations. Science is driven by nature itself, and nature gives us no choice. It is what it is." How beautiful those words are, and they set the tone of the entire book. I have learned how resilient our Earth is - from its very beginning to its present day. The book is a journey of science and scientific discovery. I was amazed how many scientists made discoveries outside their disciplines. As an example, a man named Joseph Fourier discovered that certain gases could trap heat. Fourier, a mathematician and physicist, made that discovery in 1829. The book describes just how complex Earth's atmosphere is, and that it takes almost all scientific disciplines to try and unravel nature's mysteries. I learned how important the roles of geology, paleontology, glaciology, oceanography, physics, chemistry, and many more disciplines play in understanding, not only the complex puzzle called our atmosphere, but also the history of our planet. Most importantly, I learned how Earth warmed and cooled in cycles, long before modern man arrived. Best told was the story of Otzi the Iceman, who died in 3300 BC and his perfectly preserved body was found in 1991, buried in ice on the Italian Alps.Read more ›
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Tom on September 29, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Large parts of the book are concerned with giving people a background on science: continental drift, the evolution of life, ecology, climate, and computer modeling. These are factually accurate, based on up-to-date research, and quite readable. It also covers some less settled issues, such as the effect of the sun, cosmic rays, and other factors on the climate, but appropriately qualifies them.

The remainder of the book is concerned basically with the questions of how strong the influence of human activity on climate is, how good the evidence for that is, how fast climate change is likely to occur, what the effects of climate change will be, and whether any of the proposed measures will be effective. These are exactly the right questions to ask of both policymakers and scientists, and the answers are nowhere near as clear cut as they are frequently presented.

In terms of climate change, looking at longer term climate history, it is clear that the planet has undergone massive cooling and warming over time, without any human intervention, and that such change is likely inevitable in the long term. And looking at the history of life, it is clear that the kind of change we are currently facing has not threatened life or even mammalian life. In particular, we are coming out of an ice age, and it is inevitable that sea levels will rise substantially, that the polar ice caps will melt, and that species will die out, even without human activity--like has happened many times before. Human carbon emissions probably are accelerating the process a little, but it is inevitable in the long term. Of course, in the short terms, we might even face another massive glaciation event, which would likely be far more harmful to humans.
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15 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Crosslands on August 7, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The book The Resilient Earth by Allen Simmons and Doug Hoffman is a book about the earth and its climate from its birth. The book consists of a wealth of material and information on the earth and its history. Messrs. Simmons and Hoffman provide a real education. The text is very readable in its explanation of a vast amount of information. There are many stunning illustrations and graphs. The work is very well referenced with numerous references to scientific articles. The book is an impressive work.

Among the topics presented in detail in this book are the earth's time intervals - eons, eras, periods, and epochs of earth`s geological history. Each concept is clearly defined. All the time intervals of the earth are presented in tables with the names and dates. The authors also discuss ice ages, the major time intervals of extinction of earth species such as the end of the Permian period and the end of the Cretaceous period, the changes in the earth's orbit around the sun and the Milankovitch cycles, The tectonic plates at the surface of the earth and how these plates effect the movement of continents over time, and the effect of the solar magnetic field and cosmic rays on the earth's climate. The authors also detail the differences between earth and Venus and how these differences cause abrupt dissimilarity in climate.

Regarding the anthropogenic global warming hypothesis the authors discuss the scientific method and the failure of the IPCC (International Panel on Climate Change) to adhere to it. Specifically the authors detail the unreliability of the IPCC simulated computer climate models. The authors also take to task climate alarmists who publish fallacious pseudo scientific papers based on unreliable or messaged data and/or methodologies.
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