Summary: In 2003 alone, a succession of climatic, economic, and political omens painted a frightening picture of our planet's future: About 35,000 people died in Europe as the result of the brutally hot summer. The acid level of the world's oceans was discovered to have grown more in the last 100 years than it had in the previous 10,000 years. The United Nations reported that climate impacts, which cost the world $60 billion that year, will reach $160 billion a year within th ...show moreis decade and $300 billion a year thereafter. And these are just a few of the many signs that the climate crisis has reached a fever pitch.
In the groundbreaking Boiling Point, Pulitzer Prizewinning journalist Ross Gelbspan argues that, unchecked, climate change will eclipse every other issue facing us today. What began as an initial response of many institutions -- denial and delay -- has grown into a crime against humanity. Gelbspan's previous book, The Heat Is On, exposed the financing of climate-change skeptics by the oil and coal companies. Now, his brilliant reporting exposes the strange and surprising group of players, who -- wittingly or unwittingly -- have worsened the crisis. According to Gelbspan, the fossil fuel industry is directing the Bush administration's energy and climate policies -- payback for helping Bush get elected. In a time when the science has become so robust and the impacts so visible, the White House's actions -- from withdrawing from the Kyoto Protocol to manipulating EPA reports -- represent corruption disguised as conservatism. But even more surprisingly, Gelbspan also points a finger at the news media, which have essentially ignored the biggest story at least of this century, and environmental activists, who have acquiesced in compromises that ignore the urgency and magnitude of the problem.
Finally, having gathered ideas from energy company presidents, economists, diplomats, energy policy experts, and his own research, Gelbspan offers a concrete plan for averting a full-blown climate catastrophe. As he demonstrates, a proper approach to climate change could solve many other problems in our social, political, and economic lives. It would dramatically reduce our reliance on oil, and with it our exposure to instability in the Middle East. It would create millions of jobs and raise living standards in poor countries whose populations are affected by climate-driven disease epidemics, whose crops are destroyed by weather extremes, and whose economic desperation underlies the threat of anti-U.S. terrorism. It would ultimately expand the global economy and lead to a far wealthier and more peaceful world. A passionate call-to-arms and a thoughtful roadmap for change, Boiling Point casts a discerning eye on a catastrophe too long overlooked and reveals what's really at stake for our fragile planet. ...show less