Sunday, December 6, 2009

Final Chapters on 'Field Notes'

Chapter 9 caught my attention immediately because it focused on one of the neighboring cities of Plattsburgh: Burlington. I wanted to know what global warming phenomenon was taking place there that would warrant being mentioned in a book. I was amazed to discover that the global warming prevention plan in Burlingon is one of the most progressive in the country. I admired the fact that Kolbert was able to take this 'small city' and showcase how the people with political power as well as the residents are doing what they can to reduce carbon emission.

It was also good that she mentioned that even though Burlington is making all these efforts to protect against global warming they still have their setbacks, and I think this is what makes this whole situation seem realistic. Without setbacks their would be no reason to push forward and try harder and I think that is the message that Kolbert is tying to deliver. That the people who believe in global warming are going to try as hard as they can to prevent it or prevent further damage regardless of the challenges.

I think for the final chapter Kolbert should have stayed away from mentioning to much scientific stuff and focused more on how we as lay persons can take the knowledge gained from this book and use it to benefit our living situation. She went on to talk about this scientist who won a Nobel Prize and once again she just related information to me that didn't mean anything. I wanted the final chapter to be uplifting and hopeful and I did not get that impression.

The book on a whole for me was not great, but it definately had its moments where it showed great journalism and provided information that the general public needed to hear. I think Kolbert should have used better transitions in the book so that it would have had a better flow. There have been many books written about this topic and this one just does not stand when placed in a category with all of them. I want to read a book about global warming where a skeptic like myself would say 'Wow, I need to do something to curb this'. I did not receive that from Kolbert's book.