6 degrees – our future on a hotter planet by Mark Lynas is a classic book on the effects of climate change.
Lynas is a journalist but he has read widely around the scientific literate and has produced a book which catalogues the effects of climate change globally degree by degree. So the 1st chapter catalogues the effects of a 1 degree rise in global temperatures on ecosystems and people around the world. Chapter 2 repeats the process for a 2 degree rise. By the time we get to 6 degrees it is basically curtains ….
The book has also been favourably recieved by the scientific climate science community – see the RealClimate blog for a good example.
The book was published in 2007 but it is still very contemporary. Global temperatures have already risen by 0.8 degrees since the start of the Industrial Revolution and are set to rise further irrespective of what actions we take today as a result of the time delay of CO2 already released into atmosphere. The failed Copenhagen talks tried to limit temperature rises to 2 degrees but most people think we are heading for 3 degrees plus.
Read 6 degrees to get an idea of the chaos that will cause…..
Lynas has teamed up with National Geographic Magazine to produce a series of videos detailing the impacts of climate change at the six degree intervals. You can watch those video here for 6 degrees (other temperature rises linked are given on the page to the right). If you are pushed for time these will give you a good overview and save you the time in reading the book – if you want more detail – then read the book.