"Scientists have proven to be right about the causes of a warming planet, but they have failed to stop the warming. Stopping it involves politics and economics more than science, and in this important book Joshua Howe examines how scientists and environmentalists- although both live in intensely political worlds - have managed to get the science right and the politics wrong. This is not the usual story of heroes and villains. Howe tells a more nuanced story- a tragedy- in which a somewhat naive faith in science rendered scientists politically impotent in a complicated world. Few books published this year will tell a more important story."
-Richard White, Margaret Byrne Professor of American History, Stanford
"How shall we deal with climate change? That is not just an important topic but, from the standpoint of future generations, arguably the most important of all topics. Thorough and wide-ranging, this book puts the history of global warming policy in its full political and cultural context."
-Spencer Weart, author of The Discovery of Global Warming
"Behind the Curve is a much-needed book on the history of climate science and politics stretching back to the immediate post-World War II period."
-Mark Carey, author of In the Shadow of Melting Glaciers
"Scientists and activists concerned about global warming have long expressed frustration that progress in our understanding of climate science hasn't been matched by comparable progress in climate policy. In Behind the Curve, Joshua Howe offers an elegant environmental history to argue that this disconnect is not at all an accident: only by changing the way we think about climate science and policy will we finally bring them more into alignment. A must-read for scientists, policy makers, and concerned citizens alike."
"Howe's strong insight into how individuals, institutions, and governments interact produces a fascinating yet distressing story, proving that despite its aspirations towards objectivity, applied science historically is a flawed, human tale approaching a classical tragedy."
"Fastidiously researched....there are no clear heroes and villains...Howe relates a multi-layered conflict that is leading us to a catastrophe of biblical proportions."
-Nick Walker, South China Morning Post
"In Howe's Behind the Curve we have a good story, and an instructive one. It is not the only story to tell about climate change and it won't be the last. But it is one that should be listened to."
-Mike Hulme, Climatic Change
"Page after page, Behind the Curve demonstrates the profound tension between science and politics-or more accurately, the anxiety among scientists that their credibility would be torpedoed if they allowed themselves to be lured from the safe harbor of factual inquiry into the treacherous shoals of politics."
-Chris Lydgate, Reed Magazine
"An exhaustive look at scientific, political and social responses to climate change, starting with the discovery of the greenhouse effect in 1958."
-James Helmsworth, Willamette Week
"Howe's take on the role of scientists as advocates for political action will be of interest to anyone concerned with the politics of climate change."
-Martin Mahoney, Topograph