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A good book on geology and/or meteorology?

  1. May 13, 2012 #1
    I am interested in a easy-to-read book on global geology and/or climate. The book will be ideal if it has discussions on how geology and climate changes, with detailed graphs (or data), due to seismic activities, external impacts like the solar wind from the Sun, and human-induced higher-than-otherwise chemical concentrations. It will be nice if the book has also detailed discussion of another planet in the solar system. It does not have to have discussion of the physics equations or mathematical physics simulations that are typically used.
  2. jcsd
  3. May 13, 2012 #2
    That's a tall order in one book especially as the weather and climate spring from two unique aspects of the Earth viz its position relative to the sun and the fact that it is the only planet with both an atmosphere and liquid water so comparisons are a trifle spurious.


    Atmosphere and Ocean - Our Fluid Environments by Harvey

    That book has most of what you asked for.
  4. May 13, 2012 #3


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  5. May 14, 2012 #4
    Whilst I understand that you have to start somewhere, there is a 'serious' caveat lector. What you learn from textbooks is not only data and facts but also ideas frozen in time, that may long be debunked or should be debunked.

    For instance you may read in textbooks on the initial dating of the Two Creek glacial readvance by Libby et al that it is exemplary for the onset of the Younger Dryas. Later improved research unambigiously showed that this event preceded the Younger Dryas by several centuries. How hard is it though, to put question marks by the real nature of the Younger Dryas, if some of it's most 'convincing' evidence is now pointing to a completely different conclusion. So, what if your mind is set in stone, after learning and learning obsolete ideas from the textbooks.

    So I would recommend for each event in textbooks, to also google comtemporary studies and see about the difference.

    Edit: An example from the cargo cult lecture of Richard Feynman:

    However I don't agree with his conclusion of this phenomenon....

    In paleo-whatever it's customary to discard carbon dates that do not agree with the consensus-; contamination, simple, without even having a notion how much contamination is required to change those dates by so much. But I guess that requires another thread.
    Last edited: May 14, 2012
  6. May 14, 2012 #5
    Is it reasonable to guess that because nowadays, theories almost always precede the experiment and often cover contradictory outcomes, so we don't have such problems?
  7. May 14, 2012 #6
    I'm afraid not. Looks like there is a big deviation from old fashion ethics, especially when subjects lead to flaming wars.
  8. May 17, 2012 #7
    Nice discussion. Who in geophysics and metereology are epitome of quality research and ethics?
  9. May 17, 2012 #8
    I guess there are others who can judge about geophysics. About meteorology, I'm afraid that there not a lot difference. However, I would especially recommend for the reason mentioned above to follow the restrictions in this forum and don't read about the banned subject in it, that usually is in chapter 18 or 23.
  10. May 28, 2012 #9

    I would recommend Atmospheric Science - An Introductory Survey by J. Wallace, Peter Hobbs, 2nd Edition it is a classic undergraduate text book that was updated in 2006.
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