Betting the Farm on a Drought: Stories from the Front Lines of Climate Change

Betting the Farm on a Drought: Stories from the Front Lines of Climate Change

by Seamus McGraw


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Betting the Farm on a Drought: Stories from the Front Lines of Climate Change by Seamus McGraw

Climate change has become one of the most polarizing issues of our time. Extremists on the left regularly issue hyperbolic jeremiads about the impending destruction of the environment, while extremists on the right counter with crass, tortured denials. But out in the vast middle are ordinary people dealing with stronger storms and more intense droughts than they’ve ever known. This middle ground is the focus of Betting the Farm on a Drought, a lively, thought-provoking book that lays out the whole story of climate change—the science, the math, and most importantly, the human stories of people fighting both the climate and their own deeply held beliefs to find creative solutions to a host of environmental challenges.

Seamus McGraw takes us on a trip along America’s culturally fractured back roads and listens to farmers and ranchers and fishermen, many of them people who are not ideologically, politically, or in some cases even religiously inclined to believe in man-made global climate change. He shows us how they are already being affected and the risks they are already taking on a personal level to deal with extreme weather and its very real consequences for their livelihoods. McGraw also speaks to scientists and policymakers who are trying to harness that most renewable of American resources, a sense of hope and self-reliance that remains strong in the face of daunting challenges. By bringing these voices together, Betting the Farm on a Drought ultimately becomes a model for how we all might have a pragmatic, reasoned conversation about our changing climate.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780292756618
Publisher: University of Texas Press
Publication date: 04/15/2015
Pages: 192
Sales rank: 1,226,154
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Seamus McGraw has written eloquently about hydraulic fracking and its sometimes devastating effects on landscapes and communities in The End of Country: Dispatches from the Frack Zone. His award-winning writing has also appeared in the New York Times, Huffington Post, Playboy, Popular Mechanics, Reader’s Digest, and the Forward, and on Fox Latino.

Table of Contents

1. Sundance

2. Comfortable in Our Ignorance

3. Kindergarten in a Fallout Shelter

4. Preaching to the Choir

5. Running from a Grizzly in Your Slippers

6. The Other White Meat

7. Flying by Wire

8. Notes from the Ivory Clock Tower

9. "I Never Met a Liberal Before"

10. The Year the Creeks Stopped Freezing

11. "It's What I Do"

12. Penguins Tumbling Off an Ice Sheet





What People are Saying About This

Tom Zoellner

"Seamus McGraw takes on an immense and cacophonous subject—climate change—and does so in a way that avoids the usual polarities of denial versus panic. He does an excellent job of seeking out interested American parties who don’t typically have a voice in the debate and makes a case that leadership on the issue probably won’t come from the conventional class of ‘leaders’ (namely, Congress). . . . His pragmatism and his refusal to live in a world of ideals make this a worthy project. . . . It deserves an audience of good readers."

A. J. Baime

"Seamus McGraw has created not just an important document regarding climate change and the future of our planet but a wonderful and truthful portrait of America. You feel like you’re on the road with him, cruising down little-traveled streets to meet fascinating characters whom you’d never see on Fox News or CNN. A terrific book."

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