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The Hot Topic: How to Tackle Global Warming and Still Keep the Lights on Paperback – 21 Jan 2008

4.4 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 309 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC (21 Jan. 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0747593957
  • ISBN-13: 978-0747593959
  • Product Dimensions: 13.4 x 21.6 x 2.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 184,698 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Review

'In a world full of misinformation, 'The Hot Topic' is a beacon of clarity' Al Gore 'With the clarity that Gore rightly commends, they do a fine job ['The Hot Topic'] is a material gain for the axis of good' Sunday Times 'A masterful book, wonderfully well-written. It should become the authoritative statement on climate change and what to do about it for years to come.' James Lovelock, author of 'Gaia' and 'The Revenge of Gaia' --various

About the Author

Gabrielle Walker has a PhD in chemistry from Cambridge University and has taught at both Cambridge and Princeton universities. She is a consultant to New Scientist, contributes frequently to BBC radio and writes for many newspapers and magazines. She presented BBC Radio 4's Planet Earth Under Threat, and lives in London and France. Sir David King, formerly the British Government's Chief Scientific Adviser, is widely credited with persuading the UK government to act on climate change and with getting key states (including China, Russia, the USA and India) around the negotiating table. He is Director of the new School for Enterprise and the Environment at Oxford University

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
The Hot Topic is an exemplary piece of science writing. It spells out the issues clearly and rationally, and presents evidence and analysis of supporting research.

I hope this book will reach a wide audience, because it educates the reader by informing but not by invoking mass hysteria (as, unfortunately, some mainstream media seems to view as essential when discussing this topic).

My only criticism would be that the subject is obviously very complex, with a number of interdependencies between climatic effects (e.g. positive feedback loops). More graphical representation of all this would be helpful for the layman. I found myself needing to go back and re-read some sections to keep all the concepts in my mind, and a few more diagrams would probably make for a useful, and more rapid, reference. However, the format of the book would probably need to be larger, and glossier, to do that successfully, and I suspect the cost would go up accordingly. This book is something that needs to be read by as many as possible, so producing it cheaply is probably wise. It would be great to see it on the national curriculum as a science text book in future.

Let's hope that Gabrielle Walker and Sir David King write a follow up handbook, for those that wish to pursue the topics further. They've certainly done a great job with this book.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Read this as a warm up to my MSc in Carbon Management. Very easy to read and highly informative. Whether you're looking for an intro to climate change impacts or want to know more about the science of our climate: this is the book you should be reading as a start.
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Format: Paperback
Dr, Gabrielle Walker, one of the UK's best science writers (actually one of the UKs best writers full stop) and Sir David King, the government's top science advisor whose behind-the-scenes knowledge of international energy politics is second-to-none, strip away the hyperbole and hysteria coming from all sides of the Global Warming debate and lay out the facts, the politics behind the facts and what our options are and will be as things continue to heat up. If you want to understand, discuss or-- better yet-- argue about climate change "The Hot Topic" is an invaluable resource. It also happens to be a cracking good read.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This should be a serious book about a very serious subject.
More attention to detail would give the opinions put forward more credibility.
The graphs are not particularly informative for example on pp 10/11 four lines none of which is attributed or defined.
Some focussed proof reading might have helped too.
Taken at random: on page 59 we are told that a lake of 100 million SQUARE metres of water threaten a dam. How deep is that then?
On page 173 The WWF is defined as "the Worldwide Fund for Nature. The last time I looked it was The World Wildlife Fund.
Given instances such as this how much credence should we give to all the other figures put forward?
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Format: Paperback
I found this to be a very informative book on the subject. It told the story easily and in an engaging way. I particularly liked the way in which it had references at the end of the book for further reading.
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Format: Paperback
The first 100 pages tell you succintly what's happening, why it's happening and what we have to achieve together to help ourselves.

Given the authors credibility you also know that you're getting the right information without worrying about anyone's "agenda" or "spin".

I've done a lot of reading around the subject and for me this book is the best of them.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Excellent read, well written so that anyone, even with no prior knowledge on the subject can understand most if not all of the ideas presented.
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Format: Paperback
I considered myself moderately well informed on the global warming (GW), having browsed websites, new scientist and wikipedia. I learnt a lot from this book, partly about the science, but mostly from the fascinating coverage of the political issues around GW.

It is also useful in knowing how to respond to the sceptic's points.

Overall it is a highly readable and nicely detailed (not too much to get bogged down in) account of all the surrounding issues. It is not a scare story... and does not over indulge in lurid alarmist doomsaying.
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