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December 10, 2009

Biology Book Club: Explore climate change with an expert

Remember the scene from Annie Hall where Woody Allen is arguing with a man in line at a movie theater about Marshall McLuhan’s books, when suddenly McLuhan himself steps out from behind a post to play the expert in the argument?

Well, you can have an expert with you as you read a book on science if you join the Biology Book Club starting Jan. 6. Josh Tewksbury, assistant professor of biology, who describes himself as an ecologist, a natural historian and a conservation biologist, will host the club, which will tackle the new book Climate Change: Picturing the Science.

The book pairs words by NASA climate scientist Gavin Schmidt and photographs by Joshua Wolfe to illustrate the effects of climate change on the global ecosystem. Photographic spreads show retreating glaciers, sinking villages in Alaska’s tundra, and drying lakes. The text follows adventurous scientists through the ice caps at the poles to the coral reefs of the tropical seas. The book includes contributions from experts on atmospheric science, oceanography, paleoclimatology, technology, politics, and the polar regions.

The club will meet at 6 p.m. Jan. 6, Jan. 20, Feb. 3, Feb. 17 and March 3 in the Academic Computing Center. Participation in the club is free, but attendees must purchase their own books and should plan to read the introduction and the first two chapters before the first meeting. For information or to register, call 206-685-2185 or e-mail kbrady@uw.edu.