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The Global Carbon Cycle: a book review

The Global Carbon Cycle, by Dr. David Archer, is an excellent primer on the global carbon cycle. An easily readable format, this lightweight book is an excellent companion to
those who need a quick on-the-go reference or for those who need a compendium for their office or lab. With chapters on the basic carbon cycle,
geologic carbon cycle, unstable ice age carbon cycle, present and future carbon cycle, and methane, The Global Carbon Cycle is an authoritative book with numerous examples explaining scientific
phenomena associated the global carbon cycle. The Global Carbon Cycle book also contains a
glossary of terms along with an excellent bibliography for further reading.

Many scientists such as Dr. David Archer refer to our current period of human-impacted atmospheric and ecologic systems as the anthropocene. What is meant by this is that humans are currently emitted carbon at a scale that
is up to 100x as compared to the usual scenario in a non-human impacted atmospheric and ecologic system. Currently the rate of human-based emissions
are 10 gigaton carbon C per year while the usual natural carbon-flux is roughly 0.1 gigaton carbon per year.

In The Global Carbon Cycle, feedback loops within carbon flux systems that could possibly
mitigate climate change are discussed at length with informative call-out boxes detailing chemical reactions foundational to our climate science field.

While there have been frequent natural oscillations in the global carbon cycle, there have as yet not been any observed changes in the global carbon
cycle through recent geologic history that track the speed, the possible veracity and the cause of the current climate change crisis. I highly
recommend this book as an excellent reference for both the student and the practitioner.

The Global Carbon Cycle
is part of Princeton Primers in Climate, a collection of high-quality inexpensive
books on recent developments in climate science. Titles available include Climate and the Oceans and The Cryosphere with six more books soon to be

How to order:

The Global Carbon Cycle

Paperback: 224 Pages, $24.95

Publisher: Princeton University Press, 2010

Author: David Archer, PhD

Gabriel Thoumi frequently contributes to

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