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  • Writer's pictureAnn Donahue

Read This: "The Uninhabitable Earth"

In the New York Times piece that started my climate change education, this book was inexplicably left off the list — but more commenters cited it as critical to read than any other one mentioned, so it still came to my attention.


"The Uninhabitable Earth" is a tremendous piece of work by David Wallace-Wells, but also not for the faint of heart. He makes a couple of protestations at the outset and at the end that, truly, all hope is not lost and that the man-made nature of climate change should give us hope that we can change our behaviors to remedy the situation.


Unfortunately, that attitude in and of itself proves that the book was written before our complete de-evolution into a fact-free society. Between America's science-phobic response to the pandemic and the self-righteous ignorance on display during the attempted coup last week, it has become quite apparent that our society doesn't have the fortitude to fight back the tide of climate change.


And so, "The Uninhabitable Earth" reads like a terrifying blueprint of what is to come. Chapter by chapter, it describes the dynamic systems that are going to all be re-oriented towards a way that is ultimately incompatible for human life. It's a terrifying, but necessary read.


Disclosure: I am an affiliate of Bookshop.org and I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. This commission will be donated to the NRDC.



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