The Ripple Effect

The Ripple Effect

The Fate of Freshwater in the Twenty-first Century

Book - 2011
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This work of investigative journalism shows how freshwater is the pressing global issue of the twenty-first century.
Publisher: New York : Scribner, 2011
Edition: 1st Scribner hardcover ed
ISBN: 9781439168493
1439168490
9781416535454
1416535454
1416535462
9781416535461
Branch Call Number: 333.91 P951R 2011
Characteristics: 435 p. ; 24 cm

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ghreads
Mar 24, 2013

This book very thoroughly addresses the critically important issues surrounding our water supply – water quality and pollution; waste treatment; the effects of population growth on demand; global warming and climate change and the resulting droughts, floods and conflicts; the intersection of water and power generation; privatization; governance, politics and economics. The book focuses on the United States with only minimal attention paid to the global situation. At more than 360 pages of fairly small print, it is a long read. The quality of the writing is average. Especially in the first half of the book, the author illustrates his points by describing specific situations in great historical detail – to the point of becoming a bit tedious (although that depends on your personal interest). The book would be very valuable for Americans interested in the details of how their systems of water management and flood-control function. However, for a non-American, I suspect there are better sources for a more global perspective on the principles involved. Even so, this book does provide an excellent overview of issues related to water, our most vital and precious resource.

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Drayjayeff
Nov 24, 2011

This is a sobering, but fascinating, excursion into the politics and pitfalls of water policy. Prud'homme has excellent reportorial instincts which make the book vivid and compelling. He's obsessed with the topic, and he visited the majority of the sites he describes. I was impressed by his insistence on the complexity of the issues involved. The scale of the problems, especially in the U.S. is mind-boggling, and there are chilling examples of hubris, blindness and folly throughout. Reading it, I couldn't help but wonder about Canada, in general, and BC in particular. It came to my attention recently that our province has more boil water advisories than any other, and I know that many, if not most, First Nations reserves across the country don't have indoor toilets. Let's hope a Canadian writer of Prud'homme's caliber will be inspired to take up the challenge.

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Indigo_Fox_1
Jul 17, 2012

Indigo_Fox_1 thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

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