December 26, 2007

Book Review - To Follow the Water

To Follow the Water: Exploring the Sea to Discover Climate, From the Gulf Stream to the Blue Beyond
Dallas Murphy
GC 190.2 .M87 2007

Murphy has done extensive research to unlock the role of the ocean in climate change. Using books and technical periodicals as well as participating in several shipboard scientific investigations, Murphy seeks to explain to non-scientists why the ocean has largely been left out of discussions focused around climate change. In the introduction to his work, he describes the ocean as a tremendously complex system, one that is particularly difficult to study because of its harsh climates, both above and below the surf. Add to that the dynamic interaction between the ocean and the atmosphere, science which is changing with the increase in greenhouse gases. This sophisticated system is just beginning to be understood by scientists, who still have little ability to predict how the changing system will react in future conditions. Murphy uses analogies, word pictures, and other complicated, but well studied systems to begin to bring this environmental mystery to the attention of general readers seeking to understand extreme weather patterns, causes and effects of environmental damage, and those seeking to understand of the earth's most predominant feature.