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Paleoclimate
     

Paleoclimate

by Michael L. Bender
 

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Earth's climate has undergone dramatic changes over the geologic timescale. At one extreme, Earth has been glaciated from the poles to the equator for periods that may have lasted millions of years. At another, temperatures were once so warm that the Canadian Arctic was heavily forested and large dinosaurs lived on Antarctica. Paleoclimatology is the study of such

Overview

Earth's climate has undergone dramatic changes over the geologic timescale. At one extreme, Earth has been glaciated from the poles to the equator for periods that may have lasted millions of years. At another, temperatures were once so warm that the Canadian Arctic was heavily forested and large dinosaurs lived on Antarctica. Paleoclimatology is the study of such changes and their causes. Studying Earth's long-term climate history gives scientists vital clues about anthropogenic global warming and how climate is affected by human endeavor.

In this book, Michael Bender, an internationally recognized authority on paleoclimate, provides a concise, comprehensive, and sophisticated introduction to the subject. After briefly describing the major periods in Earth history to provide geologic context, he discusses controls on climate and how the record of past climate is determined. The heart of the book then proceeds chronologically, introducing the history of climate changes over millions of years—its patterns and major transitions, and why average global temperature has varied so much. The book ends with a discussion of the Holocene (the past 10,000 years) and by putting manmade climate change in the context of paleoclimate.

The most up-to-date overview on the subject, Paleoclimate provides an ideal introduction to undergraduates, nonspecialist scientists, and general readers with a scientific background.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"The work is well-written, with just enough mathematics to add to the reader's understanding, without causing confusion."Choice

"The author has succeeded admirably in producing a clear, concise, yet detailed summary of a very important topic. The text is supplemented by an excellent selection of diagrams and data displays . . . and more than 300 references to the primary research literature. I found it easy to read yet thought provoking, consistently interesting and, perhaps best of all, not at all intimidating in bulk or style. Highly recommended!"—William R. Green, Leading Edge

"Paleoclimate gives the reader a concise, clear view of how Earth's climate has changed over geologic time and the major drivers for this change. I heartily recommend the book for those interested in understanding Earth's rich climate complexity."—Jeffrey T Kiehl, Reports of the National Center for Science Education

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780691145549
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Publication date:
08/25/2013
Series:
Princeton Primers in Climate Series
Pages:
320
Product dimensions:
5.33(w) x 8.39(h) x 0.92(d)

Meet the Author


Michael L. Bender is professor of geosciences and atmospheric/ocean sciences at Princeton University, a fellow of the American Geophysical Union, and a member of the National Academy of Sciences. He has taught paleoclimate at the graduate and undergraduate levels, and published widely on the topic in Science, Nature, and other journals.

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