A compelling and pragmatic argument: solutions to yesterday’s environmental problems reveal today’s path forward.

Product Code: 9421
ISBN: 9780226827933
Format: Hardback
Publisher: Univ. of Chicago Press
Pages: 312
Published Date: 06/11/2024
Availability:In stock
Price: $26.00

We solved planet-threatening problems before, Susan Solomon argues, and we can do it again. Solomon knows firsthand what those solutions entail. She first gained international fame as the leader of an expedition to Antarctica in 1986, making discoveries that were key to healing the damaged ozone layer. She saw a path - from scientific and public awareness to political engagement, international agreement, industry involvement, and effective action. Solomon, an atmospheric scientist and award-winning author, connects this career-defining triumph to the inside stories of other past environmental victories - against ozone depletion, smog, pesticides, and lead - to extract the essential elements of what makes change possible.

The path to success begins when an environmental problem becomes both personal and perceptible to the general public. Lawmakers, diplomats, industries, and international agencies respond to popular momentum, and effective change takes place in tandem with consumer pressure when legislation and regulation yield practical solutions. Healing the planet is a long game won not by fear and panic but by the union of public, political, and regulatory pressure.

Solvable is a book for anyone who has ever despaired about the climate crisis. As Solomon reminds us, doom and gloom get us nowhere, and idealism will only take us so far. The heroes in these stories range from angry mothers to gang members turned social activists, to upset Long Island birdwatchers to iconoclastic scientists (often women) to brilliant legislative craftsmen. Solomon’s authoritative point of view is an inspiration, a reality check, a road map, and a much-needed dose of realism. The problems facing our planet are Solvable. Solomon shows us how.

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1 Ozone Depletion: Saving Our Skins
2 Greenhouse Gases: Kigali Shows Success Is Still Possible
3 Smog: Huddled Masses Yearning to Breathe Free
4 Lead: A Metal’s Heavy Price
5 Pesticides: Taming Persistent Weapons of War
6 Climate Change: Time to Seize the Day
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“This immensely readable and deeply insightful book by one of the world’s most distinguished atmospheric scientists should be read by everybody who wants to better understand global environmental problems and solutions. Solomon shows that even the worst environmental problem of all - climate change - can still be mastered if society will only rise to the challenge.” - John P. Holdren, President Obama’s science advisor, 2009–2017

“In , Susan Solomon rolls up her sleeves and digs into the lessons of past environmental problems, including DDT and acid rain, to inspire our hope for the future. She shows how today’s problems, though daunting, are also solvable.” - Fred Krupp, president, Environmental Defense Fund

“In a narrative that sweeps from the excitement of scientific discovery to the halls of Congress and international diplomacy, Solomon reminds us that humanity has solved seemingly impossible environmental problems before and can do so again. An inspiring and illuminating book for anyone worried about the environmental challenges of today. Highly recommended!” - Anthony Leiserowitz, director, Yale Program on Climate Change Communication

"A study of how successful campaigns to curb dangerous chemicals and pollution point to a way forward on climate change. [Solomon] has won acclaim for her four decades of work in her field, and in this book, she examines how a range of environmental crises have been addressed. . . . Solomon’s review of answers to big problems displays her expertise and optimism in a pragmatic, inspiring package." - Kirkus Reviews

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