I picked up Global Weirdness on a whim while browsing at my local bookstore, Malaprops, in Asheville, NC. Which is oddly apropos, because this bookstore is a mere half mile away from the National Climatic Data Center, a NOAA entity tasked with the lofty responsibility of being our nation’s weather-data keeper. (The NCDC preserves climate and weather records, and monitors and assesses weather and climate globally. Not a small job.) Ever since moving to Asheville 2-1/2 years ago, I’ve wanted to write a climate-related story or two that involves the NCDC. But I’ve felt thwarted by my lack of expertise on climate change (where to start?); and as the scientific field snowballed I began to feel a bit left behind in understanding what it’s all about.
This book provided the perfect gateway for learning the basics of the science behind climate change. It’s authored by writers and researchers of Climate Central, which is one of the most reliable sources of information for communicating climate issues. The book’s back cover promised that it would “summarize the facts behind climate change … in clear language.” It fulfilled that promise, to the Nth degree. A good dose of that accessiblity is due to the involvement of one of the lead authors, Mike Lemonick. I’ve known of Lemonick’s work for awhile through my involvement with the NASW, and I’ve previsouly read many of his articles. He’s a veteran science writer and I could see his fingerprints and hear his writing voice thoughout the entire book. (Go here for a series of video interviews with him about making Global Weirdness.) Continue reading