At Home on an Unruly Planet: Finding Refuge on a Changed Earth

Holt. Aug. 2022. 352p. ISBN 9781250620514. $28.99. SCI
Seattle-based science journalist Ostrander has closely followed several environmental stories over the past few years. She visited communities affected by major wildfires in eastern Washington State, coastal flooding in Florida, melting permafrost in Alaska, and oil refinery pollution in California. She predicts many people will be displaced as the climate crisis intensifies: a global estimate in 2019 was 25 million. Several chapters touch on human evolution and one’s feelings of home and care for one’s surroundings. While the situations are tragic, the author focuses on the experiences and struggles of a few determined individuals. Their leadership mitigated damage, or aided resilience and recovery. A point made throughout is that humans have to live with nature in its new manifestations. For some, that may mean permanent relocation to safer areas. Decades of global government pledges haven’t reduced the rate of climate change. Ostrander believes grassroots concern and action is necessary to counter the overheating of the biosphere. Examples include preservation of the Los Angeles aquifer.
VERDICT This compassionate reporting brings the reality of climate change to U.S. Americans.
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