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Hell and High Water: Joe Romm's new book

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  • Felix Kramer
    Here s a suggestion for your first read of 2007 -- or your first gift book. Readers of this list will know the name Joe Romm: former US Energy Department
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 31, 2006
      Here's a suggestion for your first read of 2007 -- or your first gift
      book. Readers of this list will know the name Joe Romm: former US
      Energy Department official, founder of the Center for Energy &
      Climate Solutions <www.energyandclimate.org>. He introduced many key
      influencers to plug-in hybrids and was deeply involved in the
      National Commission on Energy Policy, which provided important
      validation for PHEVs. He is author of "The Hype About Hydrogen"
      <http://www.cool-companies.com>, co-authored with Andy Frank
      Scientific American's major article on PHEVs
      <http://www.calcars.org/downloads.html> and writes a blog at
      <http://climateprogress.org>. In his new book on the climate crisis.
      Joe is promoting use of the phrase "Hell and High Water" instead of
      global warming or climate change, as a more visceral way to think
      about what will happen if we continue on a business-as-usual path.

      Following is the press release for the book, which is on sale now. We
      hope in the future to be able to send out excerpts from sections on PHEVs.

      "Joe Romm knows what he is talking about. His message is urgent,
      reasoned and informative--he delivers it with surprising clarity.
      America had better listen up--this may be our last chance to stop
      global warming."
      - James Hansen, Director, NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies

      "Joe Romm has worked with the climate scientists, fought with the
      politicians and objectively analyzed the technologies that may save
      us. No one is as well qualified to tell us about climate change, the
      technological options before us, and the political battle about to be joined."
      - Tim Flannery, author of The Weather Makers

      "If you buy only one book about global warming, make it HELL AND HIGH
      WATER. Joe Romm has put together a highly readable explanation of our
      climate predicament and the solution. We need to follow his advice
      now -- starting with energy efficiency."
      - Arthur Rosenfeld, California Energy Commissioner

      "Joe Romm brings a unique combination of expertises in climate
      science and energy technologies and policies to address the
      challenges of enabling a clean energy future and reducing our
      addition to oil. HELL AND HIGH WATER is an important and timely
      contribution that deserves careful consideration in the dialogue and
      debate on U.S. energy and climate policy."
      - Judith Curry, School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, Georgia
      Institute of Technology

      About the Author
      Joseph Romm, Ph.D. is executive director and founder of the Center
      for Energy and Climate Solutions and a senior fellow at the Center
      for American Progress, the premier progressive think tank. During the
      Clinton administration, Romm was Assistant Secretary at the
      Department of Energy, where he headed the Office of Energy Efficiency
      and Renewable Energy. He is the author of "The Hype about Hydrogen:
      Fact and Fiction in the Race to Save the Climate" and stars in the
      documentary film "Who Killed the Electric Car." Dr. Romm holds a
      Ph.D. in physics from MIT.

      Global Warming-the Solution and the Politics-and What We Should Do
      By Joseph Romm
      William Morrow / An Imprint of HarperCollins Publishers
      January 2, 2007; $24.95; Hardcover

      Global warming has been thrust into the national spotlight as never
      before. From devastating hurricanes to near daily headlines of
      dramatic changes to the climate, the threat of super hurricanes,
      mega-droughts, and sea levels rising 20 to 80 feet is looming larger
      than ever.

      But as renowned physicist and energy technology expert Joseph Romm
      argues, many people still don't get it. Fed a steady diet of
      misinformation by pundits, ideologues, and conservative politicians,
      most Americans don't believe-or don't realize-that climate change is,
      perhaps, the most serious issues of our time. Yet, as Romm attests,
      we have, at most, a decade to reverse course. If we fail to act,
      global warming will profoundly and irreversibly remake every aspect
      of our lives.

      The question now is do we humans have the political will to take the
      steps necessary to save the planet?

      In HELL AND HIGH WATER: Global Warming-the Solution and the
      Politics-and What We Should Do , Romm presents a searing indictment
      of the policies and politics that are hastening the planet's
      destruction and issues a clarion call for Americans to wake up and
      demand action from our government before it's too late. Combining
      scientific fact with well-reasoned political analysis, Romm cuts
      through the rhetoric and debunks the myths to present a clear and
      frighteningly candid assessment of our endangered climate. HELL AND
      HIGH WATER bridges the gap between climate science and energy policy
      and is an essential guide to preserving our world and our way of life.

      In HELL AND HIGH WATER, Romm explains why the U.S. has inexplicably
      failed to act on global warming. As he argues, the problem stems
      from multiples sources, including weaknesses within the scientific
      community, from environmentalists and progressives who've made
      strategic mistakes, and the media's flawed coverage of science. The
      successful exploitation of those weaknesses by conservative political
      leaders and think tanks that are funded by oil companies has created
      a virtual standstill in developing cost-saving, alternative energy
      policies. "Global warming has also proved intractable because this
      country has refused to adopt a sensible energy strategy," Romm
      writes. "Our political leaders won't even require Detroit to build
      fuel-efficient vehicles-which would not only reduce greenhouse gas
      emissions but also save consumers money and cut oil imports during a
      time of war in the Persian Gulf."

      Romm discusses the country's future if wide scale environmental
      changes are not enacted immediately. He explains why global warming
      is so challenging because it is a vast and complex systems
      problem-the environment is subject to vicious cycles whereby an
      initial warming change leads to further warming. Romm reveals how
      the oceans, soils, Arctic permafrost, and rainforests may eventually
      become sources of greenhouse emissions and he discusses how sea
      levels are on course to rise high enough to swallow up numerous
      coastal communities and inland areas on both U.S. coasts by 2100.

      HELL AND HIGH WATER also examines the politics behind global warming
      and the solutions required to reverse its catastrophic effects. He
      exposes the tactics of conservative politicians who deny the science
      and delay genuine action on alternative energy initiatives. He cites
      the media's sloppy reporting and unwillingness to probe behind the
      rhetoric. Romm also delivers harsh criticism of the Clinton and Bush
      administrations for failing to strengthen and support the 1997 Kyoto
      Protocol and for the current administration's attempts to thwart
      international efforts to further limit greenhouse gas
      emissions. "The Bush Administration has not been content merely
      blocking domestic efforts to cut greenhouse gas emissions but has
      been actively trying to block international negotiations aimed at
      developing mandatory regulations beyond what Kyoto would require,"
      Romm writes. "But as in our country, China's leaders operate under
      the misguided belief that they can pollute all they want during this
      time of rapid growth, and then use their future wealth to solve their
      environmental problems."

      HELL AND HIGH WATER lays out a number of key solutions to avoiding
      climate catastrophe including capturing carbon dioxide from coal
      plants and storing it underground; building 1 million large wind
      turbines and 700 new nuclear plants worldwide; launching massive
      energy-efficiency programs for homes, office buildings, and heavy
      industry; increasing the fuel efficiency of cars and light trucks to
      60 miles per gallon while also equipping them with advanced hybrid
      technology; and ceasing all tropical deforestation while doubling the
      rate of new tree planting. Though these strategies may seem
      implausible, Romm attests, they are technically possible and can
      significantly slow global warming while also buying more time for the
      world to develop new technologies and a consensus for even stronger action.

      Authoritative and persuasive, HELL AND HIGH WATER reveals just how
      dire our climate predicament is while also offering the hope that we
      can avert a global disaster by using the technology and resources we
      have-now. "We have cost-effective technologies today that can
      sharply reduce global-warming pollution," Romm writes. "We are on
      the brink of taking the biggest gamble in human history, one that, if
      we lose, will transform the lives of the next fifty generations."

      -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --
      Felix Kramer fkramer@...
      Founder California Cars Initiative
      -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --
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