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Lunch » Tags » Books » Reviews » Boiling Point: How Politicians, Big Coal and Oil, Journalists and Activists Have Fueled A Climate Crisis--And What We Can Do To Avert Disaster » User review

We cannot say that we did not know.

  • Mar 22, 2009
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Take a good look around you.  The signs are numerous and unmistakable.  The Arctic glaciers are melting at an alarming rate.  Entire island nations in the South Pacific are being permanently evacuated and tropical diseases are spreading as birds and insects migrate farther and farther north.  Hardly a week goes by without another bizaare weather event dominating the headlines.  It is against this backdrop that Ross Gelbspan brings us "Boiling Point: How Politicians, Big Coal and Oil, Journalists and Activists Have Fueled A Climate Crisis--And What We Can Do To Avert Disaster ".  This book is author Russ Gelbspan's clarion call for the peoples of the world to take their heads out of the sand, set aside their differences and work together to solve a problem that threatens the world as we know it.

According to Gelbspan, an overwhelming majority of scientists around the world agree that the world must reduce carbon emissions by some 70%!   And we have less than two decades to get the job done.  Obviously, there are major obstacles everywhere, not the least of which was the Bush administration who for 8 long years was in the hip pocket of the oil and coal industry.  In fact, less than two months after his inauguration, the President broke a campaign promise and stated that he would no longer seek to regulate power plant emissions.  And throughout the remainder of his Presidency Mr. Bush fought any kind of regulation on the energy industry tooth and nail. The author quotes longtime Bush supporter Robert Luft, President of Entergy Corp who flatly states "Still, I cannot express my frustration with his performance in this area...Make no mistake. If today's leaders of government and business don't start understanding the need to take emissions reductions seriously, we will leave a grim, grim legacy for a children and our grandchildren."

After reviewing what divides us Ross Gelbspan proposes a challenging three point plan that would help to bring about the dramatic changes that are needed to help avoid an environmental calamity.  And while I will not enumerate his proposal here it is safe to say that all of us as individuals and all of the nations of the world must put aside our many and deep differences and work for the common good.  The author is cautiously optimistic that given the right set of circumstances that this could actually happen.  Let's hope and pray that it will.  In my view,  "Boiling Point: How Politicians, Big Coal and Oil, Journalists and Activists Have Fueled A Climate Crisis--And What We Can Do To Avert Disaster " is a must read for the responsible citizen, even for those who remain skeptical about the very existence of global warming.    Highly recommended.  
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Paul Tognetti ()
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I guess I would qualify as a frustrated writer. My work requires very little writing and so since 1999 I have been writing reviews on non-fiction books and anthology CD's on amazon.com. I never could … more
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In Boiling Point, Ross Gelbspan argues that, unchecked, climate change will swamp every other issue facing us today. Indeed, what began as an initial response of many institutions--denial and delay--has now grown into a crime against humanity. The fossil fuel industry is directing the Bush administration's energy and climate policies-payback for helping Bush get elected. But they're not the only ones to blame: the media and environmental activists are unwittingly worsening the crisis. In his new introduction, Gelbspan reveals that the outlook isn't getting better. The climate continues to change with increasing acceleration: hurricanes devastated Florida; rainfall patterns left two million people starving in Kenya; 2004 was the fourth hottest year on record. At the same time, the coal industry was planning to sabotage an effort in the Senate to begin to regulate carbon dioxide. Officials of Switzerland, France, and Canada said last year that, when the Kyoto Protocol takes effect, they intend to take the United States to court under the World Trade Organization, reasoning that the U.S.'s refusal to lower their carbon emissions amounts to an illegal subsidy-a "carbon subsidy"-on its exports. With the reelection of George W. Bush and a Republican-controlled congress, Boiling Point is more imperative than ever. Both a passionate call-to-arms and a thoughtful roadmap for change, Gelbspan reveals what's at stake for our fragile planet.

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ISBN-10: 046502761X
ISBN-13: 978-0465027613
Author: Ross Gelbspan
Genre: Earth Sciences
Publisher: Basic Books
Date Published: July 20, 2004
Format: Hardcover
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