TED Conversations

Aja B.
  • Aja B.
  • New York, NY
  • United States

Online Community Manager, TED


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Happening Now: Live Q&A with TED Books Author Daniel Grossman on "Deep Water" and the Science of Rising Sea Levels

*** Live Q&A with Author Daniel Grossman: Tuesday, August 21st, 1pm-2pm EDT (New York Time) ***

We're starting a regular TED Book discussion group here on TED Conversations. Would you like to join us?

For the next two weeks, we'll be using this space to discuss Daniel Grossman's new book on the science of rising sea levels, "Deep Water". The TED Books are designed to be read in a single sitting, so it should be a quick read, and it will give us a good shared starting point for a broader discussion on climate change and what the future holds for our planet.

These are short eBooks, available for Kindles, Nooks, and iPads/iPods/iPhones. I believe you can also read Kindle books on your Mac or PC now, and if you have an iOS device, there's a new TED Books app.

Download options: http://www.ted.com/pages/tedbooks_library
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B008R8U1LU/

At the end of our two-week discussion, author Daniel Grossman will be joining in for a Live Q&A session to share his thoughts and answer any questions we might have.


Closing Statement from Aja B.

Many thanks to Daniel Grossman and all our participants! This was an interesting and educational journey. To learn more about Dan's work, you can visit his website here: http://dangrossmanmedia.com

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    Aug 12 2012: Am really interested in the topic of the weather and would like to join in here. The weather here in the U.K, for the past 2-3 years has been very odd. Early dry, hot spring then wet,damp summers then long autumns and some quite severe but dry winters. On the daily weather broadcasts the forecaters have been suggesting the jet-stream and the North Atlantic Drift are 'in the wrong place'. Apparently recently there was a warm spot over the North Pole which has caused huge amounts of ice to melt and meant no end of really heavy rain here. I am of the opinion that the oceans are condensers and filters and that 'Mother' Nature is trying to restablish a balance. The butterfly population seems to have been in decline for a number of years but this year they are back. What we are lacking now is the birds to mop up all the excess insects. Excessive rain is the mortal enemy of insects like bees. Just to add to the mix, a tidal flow barrier was built on the River Thames close to Greenwich to prevent flooding from tidal surges coming down from the North Sea. Apparently with the rising sea levels and the more intense storms it might not be as effective as hoped. Am going to read the book and want to post my other thoughts about global weather patterns and the impact on food production later. Thank you for this format for discussions.
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      Aug 13 2012: Hi Elizabeth -- A book you might enjoy after reading this one is "The Little Ice Age: How Climate Made History, 1300-1850." If you know your British history, it's fascinating to realize how the changing weather patterns over the last few centuries affected world events.
      • Aug 13 2012: In recent years, scientists have started using the term "Earth system," when describing the interacting relationships between all the parts of the climate, the oceans, the biosphere, the cryosphere (ice), etc. The important point of that is that they're realize how all these parts interact.

        Most people, to the extent to which they ever think about global warming, just think of a change in temperature and nothing more. But the temperatures differences around the planet are the driving force of the "heat engine" that runs storms, winds and, to some extent, ocean currents. That means that all these different phenomena get changed. That has impacts on plants and animals and also on the human built world. Last year, after Hurricane Irene, I went up to the White Mountains of New Hampshire for a hike. I had to walk part of the way to the trailhead because a bridge was washed out. On the forest road I took, a large section of the road had been washed away when a culvert overflowed. All these things showed me how closely to the margin we've built our world. Our infrastructure is made to accommodate a rather restricted range of conditions. If those conditions change, as is occurring, our massive investments in buildings, bridges, highways and the like are unsuitable. The potential cost of rebuilding could be astronomical.
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          Aug 13 2012: I beleve humans have always loved the sea. I think it is a combination of the light wavelengths and the rhythmic pulse of the tide, it is to do with our own evolution, we still have waterproof skin and vestigial webbing on our hands and feet. Suggest do need to start to get population moved from coastal and low laying areas. Maybe the prison population might be better employed building some new communities. Massive civil engineering projects helped during the economic depression of the 1930s. There must be a huge pool of transferrable skills in the people on 'work-fare' to administer such projects. Do think it might also be a good idea to start trying to replant the semi-arid areas with plants like cabbage palm (cordyline australis) and mulberry trees, lavender etc. Think the huge deforestation of the South Americas a massive mistake as the Pacific Ocean and the rainforest are the natural filters in the southern hemiisphere. N.Z., has some active volcanoes that could cause considerable damage with minor long term eruptions. Sound like a child because do not have the technological vocab. Dual U.K/N.Z. Psychologists say people motivated by loss not by potential gain but do think an incentivised scheme to move people away from the big cities on the coast might be a really good idea. Most people are too busy trying to pay the bills to think about the big picture. Really worried about the decline in the pollinating insects and birds. Worried about excessive melting of ice on high mountains washing too much soil into rivers. Worried about the efffects on freshwater availabilty and potability. Think about whether the condensing action of the mountains will be compromised because they are not cold enough and if ther filtering actions in terms of insect and dust removal will also be compromised. Hope you understand my rather childish vocab. Do think it is all escalating too fast.

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