Waters of the World: The Story of the Scientists Who Unraveled the Mysteries of Our Oceans, Atmosphere, and Ice Sheets and Made the Planet Whole

University of Chicago Press
Free sample

The compelling and adventurous stories of seven pioneering scientists who were at the forefront of what we now call climate science.

From the glaciers of the Alps to the towering cumulonimbus clouds of the Caribbean and the unexpectedly chaotic flows of the North Atlantic, Waters of the World is a tour through 150 years of the history of a significant but underappreciated idea: that the Earth has a global climate system made up of interconnected parts, constantly changing on all scales of both time and space. A prerequisite for the discovery of global warming and climate change, this idea was forged by scientists studying water in its myriad forms. This is their story.

Linking the history of the planet with the lives of those who studied it, Sarah Dry follows the remarkable scientists who summited volcanic peaks to peer through an atmosphere’s worth of water vapor, cored mile-thick ice sheets to uncover the Earth’s ancient climate history, and flew inside storm clouds to understand how small changes in energy can produce both massive storms and the general circulation of the Earth’s atmosphere. Each toiled on his or her own corner of the planetary puzzle. Gradually, their cumulative discoveries coalesced into a unified working theory of our planet’s climate.

We now call this field climate science, and in recent years it has provoked great passions, anxieties, and warnings. But no less than the object of its study, the science of water and climate is—and always has been—evolving. By revealing the complexity of this history, Waters of the World delivers a better understanding of our planet’s climate at a time when we need it the most.
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About the author

Sarah Dry is a writer and historian of science who has immersed herself in the history of meteorology and climate for more than ten years. She is the author of Curie and The Newton Papers: The Strange and True Odyssey of Isaac Newton’s Manuscripts. Born and raised in Philadelphia, she now lives in Oxford, UK, with her family, and is a trustee of the Science Museum Group and the Oxford Trust.
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Additional Information

Publisher
University of Chicago Press
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Published on
Nov 15, 2019
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Pages
368
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ISBN
9780226670041
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Language
English
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Genres
History / Modern / 19th Century
History / Modern / 20th Century
History / Modern / 21st Century
Science / Earth Sciences / Hydrology
Science / Earth Sciences / Meteorology & Climatology
Science / General
Science / History
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Content protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Read aloud
Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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