Where the River Flows

Author: Sean W. Fleming
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 1400885027
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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Rivers are essential to civilization and even life itself, yet how many of us truly understand how they work? Why do rivers run where they do? Where do their waters actually come from? How can the same river flood one year and then dry up the next? Where the River Flows takes you on a majestic journey along the planet's waterways, providing a scientist's reflections on the vital interconnections that rivers share with the land, the sky, and us. Sean Fleming draws on examples ranging from common backyard creeks to powerful and evocative rivers like the Mississippi, Yangtze, Thames, and Congo. Each chapter looks at a particular aspect of rivers through the lens of applied physics, using abundant graphics and intuitive analogies to explore the surprising connections between watershed hydrology and the world around us. Fleming explains how river flows fluctuate like stock markets, what "digital rainbows" can tell us about climate change and its effects on water supply, how building virtual watersheds in silicon may help avoid the predicted water wars of the twenty-first century, and much more. Along the way, you will learn what some of the most exciting ideas in science—such as communications theory, fractals, and even artificial life—reveal about the life of rivers. Where the River Flows offers a new understanding of the profound interrelationships that rivers have with landscapes, ecosystems, and societies, and shows how startling new insights are possible when scientists are willing to think outside the disciplinary box.

The Spirit of Dialogue

Author: Aaron T. Wolf
Publisher: Island Press
ISBN: 1610916182
Format: PDF, Kindle
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We tend to approach conflict from the perspective of competing interests. A farmer's interest lies in preserving water for crops, while an environmentalist's interest is in using that same water for instream habitats. It's hard to see how these interests intersect. But what if there was a differway to understand each party's needs? Aaron T. Wolf has sphis career mediating such conflicts, both in the U.S. and around the world. He quickly learned that in negotiations, people are not automatons, programed to defend their positions, but are driven by a complicated set of dynamics—from how comfortable (or uncomfortable) the meeting room is to their deepest senses of self. What approach or system of understanding could possibly untangle all these complexities? Wolf's answer may be surprising to Westerners who are accustomed to separating religion from science, rationality from spirituality. Wolf draws lessons from a diversity of faith traditions to transform conflict. True listening, as practiced by Buddhist monks, as opposed to the "active listening” advocated by many mediators, can be the key to calming a colleague's anger. Alignmwith an energy beyond oneself, what Christians would call grace, can change self-righteousness into community concern. Shifting the discussion from one about interests to one about common values—both farmers and environmentalists share the value of love of place—can be the starting point for real dialogue. As a scientist, Wolf engages religion not for the purpose of dogma but for the practical process of transformation. Whether atheist or fundamentalist, Muslim or Jewish, Quaker or Hindu, any reader involved in difficult dialogue will find concrete steps towards a meeting of souls.

The Seasons Alter How to Save Our Planet in Six Acts

Author: Philip Kitcher
Publisher: Liveright Publishing
ISBN: 1631492845
Format: PDF, Kindle
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A landmark work of environmental philosophy that seeks to transform the debate about climate change. As the icecaps melt and the sea levels rise around the globe—threatening human existence as we know it—climate change has become one of the most urgent and controversial issues of our time. For most people, however, trying to understand the science, politics, and arguments on either side can be dizzying, leading to frustrating and unproductive debates. Now, in this groundbreaking new work, two of our most renowned thinkers present the realities of global warming in the most human of terms—everyday conversation—showing us how to convince even the most stubborn of skeptics as to why we need to act now. Indeed, through compelling Socratic dialogues, Philip Kitcher and Evelyn Fox Keller tackle some of the thorniest questions facing mankind today: Is climate change real? Is climate change as urgent as the “scientists” make it out to be? How much of our current way of life should we sacrifice to help out a generation that won’t even be born for another hundred years? Who would pay for the enormous costs of making the planet "green?" What sort of global political arrangement would be needed for serious action? These crucial questions play out through familiar circumstances, from an older husband and wife considering whether they should reduce their carbon footprint, to a first date that evolves into a passionate discussion about whether one person can actually make a difference, to a breakfast that becomes an examination over whether or not global warming is really happening. Entertaining, widely accessible, and thoroughly original, the result promises to inspire dialogue in many places, while also giving us a line of reasoning that explodes the so-far impenetrable barriers of obfuscation that have surrounded the discussion. While the Paris Agreement was an historic achievement that brought solutions within the realm of possibility, The Seasons Alter is a watershed book that will show us how to make those possibilities a reality.

Original Highways

Author: Roy MacGregor
Publisher: Vintage Canada
ISBN: 030736139X
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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Expanding on his landmark Globe and Mail series in which he documented his travels down 16 of Canada's great rivers, Roy MacGregor tells the story of our country through the stories of its original highways, and how they sustain our spirit, identity and economy--past, present and future. No country is more blessed with fresh water than Canada. From the mouth of the Fraser River in BC, to the Bow in Alberta, the Red in Manitoba, the Gatineau, the Saint John and the most historic of all Canada's rivers, the St. Lawrence, our beloved chronicler of Canadian life, Roy MacGregor, has paddled, sailed and traversed their lengths, learned their stories and secrets, and the tales of centuries lived on their rapids and riverbanks. He raises lost tales, like that of the Great Tax Revolt of the Gatineau River, and reconsiders histories like that of the Irish would-be settlers who died on Grosse Ile and the incredible resilience of settlers in the Red River Valley. Along the Grand, the Ottawa and others, he meets the successful conservationists behind the resuscitation of polluted wetlands, including even Toronto's Don, the most abused river in Canada (where he witnesses families of mink, returned to play on its banks). Long before our national railroad was built, our rivers held Canada together; in these sixteen portraits, filled with yesterday's adventures and tomorrow's promise, MacGregor weaves together a story of Canada and its ongoing relationship with its most precious resource.

Not a Scientist How Politicians Mistake Misrepresent and Utterly Mangle Science

Author: Dave Levitan
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
ISBN: 0393353338
Format: PDF, ePub
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An eye-opening tour of the political tricks that subvert scientific progress. The Butter-Up and Undercut. The Certain Uncertainty. The Straight-Up Fabrication. Dave Levitan dismantles all of these deceptive arguments, and many more, in this probing and hilarious examination of the ways our elected officials attack scientific findings that conflict with their political agendas. The next time you hear a politician say, "Well, I’m not a scientist, but…," you’ll be ready.

The Story of the Earth in 25 Rocks

Author: Donald R. Prothero
Publisher: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 0231544278
Format: PDF, Docs
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Every rock is a tangible trace of the earth’s past. The Story of the Earth in 25 Rocks tells the fascinating stories behind the discoveries that shook the foundations of geology. In twenty-five chapters—each about a particular rock, outcrop, or geologic phenomenon—Donald R. Prothero recounts the scientific detective work that shaped our understanding of geology, from the unearthing of exemplary specimens to tectonic shifts in how we view the inner workings of our planet. Prothero follows in the footsteps of the scientists who asked—and answered—geology’s biggest questions: How do we know how old the earth is? What happened to the supercontinent Pangea? How did ocean rocks end up at the top of Mount Everest? What can we learn about our planet from meteorites and moon rocks? He answers these questions through expertly chosen case studies, such as Pliny the Younger’s firsthand account of the eruption of Vesuvius; the granite outcrops that led a Scottish scientist to theorize that the landscapes he witnessed were far older than Noah’s Flood; the salt and gypsum deposits under the Mediterranean Sea that indicate that it was once a desert; and how trying to date the age of meteorites revealed the dangers of lead poisoning. Each of these breakthroughs filled in a piece of the greater puzzle that is the earth, with scientific discoveries dovetailing with each other to offer an increasingly coherent image of the geologic past. Summarizing a wealth of information in an entertaining, approachable style, The Story of the Earth in 25 Rocks is essential reading for the armchair geologist, the rock hound, and all who are curious about the earth beneath their feet.

Landscapes on the Edge

Author: Committee on Challenges and Opportunities in Earth Surface Processes
Publisher: National Academies Press
ISBN: 0309140242
Format: PDF, Mobi
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During geologic spans of time, Earth's shifting tectonic plates, atmosphere, freezing water, thawing ice, flowing rivers, and evolving life have shaped Earth's surface features. The resulting hills, mountains, valleys, and plains shelter ecosystems that interact with all life and provide a record of Earth surface processes that extend back through Earth's history. Despite rapidly growing scientific knowledge of Earth surface interactions, and the increasing availability of new monitoring technologies, there is still little understanding of how these processes generate and degrade landscapes. Landscapes on the Edge identifies nine grand challenges in this emerging field of study and proposes four high-priority research initiatives. The book poses questions about how our planet's past can tell us about its future, how landscapes record climate and tectonics, and how Earth surface science can contribute to developing a sustainable living surface for future generations.

The World of Tides

Author: William Thomson
Publisher: Hachette UK
ISBN: 1786480816
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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In The Book of Tides, William Thomson took the reader on a mesmerising journey round the coast of Britain. Now, he sets out with his surfboard and tidal compass to encounter the waters of the world, charting his most extraordinary sights and experiences. These include the whirlpools of the Arctic circle, the world's biggest ever surfed wave off Portugal, the strongest whirlpool in Norway and, in Australia, the most dangerous rapids known to us. With the enticing combination of William's passionate text and collectable mapping illustrations, this is a book for anyone who feels the pull of the tides and call of the sea. FEATURING: New Zealand Australia Portugal France England Scotland Norway The Netherlands Spain Indonesia China Japan USA Canada Belize

Water Governance and Collective Action

Author: Diana Suhardiman
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1351705245
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Collective Action is now recognized as central to addressing the water governance challenge of delivering sustainable development and global environmental benefits. This book examines concepts and practices of collective action that have emerged in recent decades globally. Building on a Foucauldian conception of power, it provides an overview of collective action challenges involved in the sustainable management and development of global freshwater resources through case studies from Africa, South and Southeast Asia and Latin America. The case studies link community-based management of water resources with national decision-making landscapes, transboundary water governance, and global policy discussion on sustainable development, justice and water security. Power and politics are placed at the centre of collective action and water governance discourse, while addressing three core questions: how is collective action shaped by existing power structures and relationships at different scales? What are the kinds of tools and approaches that various actors can take and adopt towards more deliberative processes for collective action? And what are the anticipated outcomes for development processes, the environment and the global resource base of achieving collective action across scales?