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Heat: How to Stop the Planet From Burning Paperback – March 1, 2009
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"The most powerful treatise yet on the gravity of global warming....I defy you to read this book and not feel motivated to change." -- The Times (London)
"Uncompromising in its message, intelligence, and honesty. Parents...should consider it required reading." -- The Globe & Mail
"Well-researched and worth reading for the detailed technical analysis showing just how [the country] could cut its greenhouse gas output and still enjoy the comforts of modern life." -- The Financial Times --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From the Inside Flap
We know that climate change is happening.
We know it could, if the worst predictions come true, destroy the conditions which make human life possible.
Only one question is now worth asking:
Can it be stopped?
George Monbiot shows it can.
For the first time, Heat demonstrates that we can achieve the necessary cut--a 90% reduction in carbon emissions by 2030--without bringing civilization to an end. Though written with a "spirit of optimism," Monbiot does not pretend it will be easy. Our response will have to be immediate, and it will have to be decisive.
With dazzling intellect and ample wit, Monbiot supports his proposals with a rigorous investigation into what works, what doesn't, how much it costs, and what the problems might be. He shows us how we can transform our houses, our power, and our transportation systems. By showing that we can save our biosphere without losing our comfort and security, he sweeps away the perpetual excuse for doing nothing: that it would be too painful and expensive to sustain life on Earth. And he is not afraid to attack anyone--friend or foe--whose claims are false or whose figures have been fudged. His exciting, disturbing ideas expose corporate disinformation campaigns, inflated expectations for emerging technologies, and the cowardice of our politicians.
Monbiot observes, "We are the last generation that can make this happen, and this is the last possible moment at which we can make it happen." There is no time to waste.
Inspiring, original, burning with fury and disgust, this book could change the world. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top customer reviews
Since writing this review I have come across another very important book on energy policy -A Question of Balance: Weighing the Options on Global Warming Policies by the Yale economist, William Nordhaus. This book looks at the trade-offs of various approaches to ameliorating global warming using computer modeling to forecast the cost and results. A gradually increasing carbon tax, maximal participation by all nations and industries and support for alternative energy research come out best. The Gore approach (which is similar to Monbiot's) of stringent carbon restriction from the start ends up costing much more to reach the same results which surprised me.
He examines electricity production, transportation, housing and in some case examples, retail stores and concrete production. Relying on government reports, think tanks and other sources he discovers that it may "just" be possible, so long as a society we approach it like we did WWII, with a massive and focused effort and some sacrifices. Except for long distance travel (by air, train or ship), everything else it should be possible, says Monbiot, to reduce by 90%.
Monbiot mainly addresses England. However, England is one of the worlds best organized countries politically and economically, so anything difficult for England is going to nearly impossible for other nations - can Georgia or Belarus or Chile or China reduce carbon emissions by 90%? It is a global problem and Monbiot doesn't look beyond England and the US, thus it is difficult to see how the entire world can turn around in such a short period of time. There are big areas that Monbiot does not address, such as agriculture. He also does not look at "climate surprises" or tipping points, where a little CO2 increase by humans triggers a massive CO2 release in nature (see Fred Pearce With Speed and Violence: Why Scientists Fear Tipping Points in Climate Change).
Monbiot is optimistic solutions are available, but I found his solutions so politically difficult to implement, and nearly impossible globally, I came away even more depressed about our prospects. However, one thing is clear, we have no choice but to try.
Most recent customer reviews
the whole world should read this book
when will we wake up???
addresses all the effects of global warming
a must read
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