Hot Air: Meeting Canada's Climate Change Challenge

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McClelland & Stewart, 2008 - Political Science - 281 pages
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Here’s a clear, believable book for Canadians concerned about our situation — and it offers a solution.

It’s a brilliant mix. To “Canada’s best mind on the environment,” Mark Jaccard, who won the 2006 Donner Prize for an academic book in this area, you add Nic Rivers, a researcher who works with him at Simon Fraser University. Then you add Jeffrey Simpson, the highly respectedGlobe and Mailcolumnist, to punch the message home in a clear, hard-hitting way. The result is a unique book.

Most other books on energy and climate change are: (a) terrifying or (b) academic or (c) quirky, advocating a single, neat solution like solar or wind power.

This book is different. It starts with an alarming description of the climate threat to our country. Then it shifts to an alarming description of how Canadians have been betrayed by their politicians (“We’re working on it!”), their industrialists (“Things aren’t that bad, really, and voluntary guidelines will be good enough.”), and even their environmentalists (“Energy efficiency can be profitable, and people can change their lifestyles!”) All of this, of course, reinforces the myths that forceful policies are not needed.

Hot Airthen lays out in convincing and easily understandable terms the few simple policies that Canada must adopt right away in order to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions over the next few decades. It even shows how these policies can be designed to have minimal negative effects.

With evidence from other countries that are successfully addressing climate change, Hot Air shows why these are the only policies that will work — and why this is a matter of life and death for all of us.


From the Hardcover edition.

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About the author (2008)

Jeffrey Simpson has been theGlobe and Mail’s national columnist since 1984 and is a nationally recognized figure and an Officer of the Order of Canada. A former Governor General’s Award—winner, he is the author most recently ofThe Friendly Dictatorship.

Mark Jaccard is a professor at SFU’s School of Resource and Environmental Management and an internationally respected authority on climate change. His academic publications have won him the Best Policy Book Award and the Donner Prize. As the leading Canadian authority on climate change, he is the sixth most frequently interviewed professor in the country, and Roy MacGregor has called him “Canada’s best mind on the environment.”

Nic Rivers is a researcher and writer at SFU who assisted with research, and with the fifteen maps and graphs that help explain the book’s message.


From the Hardcover edition.

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