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Preface Acknowledgments Prologue Part 1. Water in the Universe: From the Big Bang to the Appearance of Man 1. Beginnings 2. The Churning of the Earth 3. Origin and Evolution of Life 4. Catastrophes 5. Ice, Moon, and Planets Part 2: Water in Today's World 6. Water and Energy Cycles 7. Winds, Waves, and Currents 8. Water's Deep Memories 9. Clouds, Rain, and Angry Skies 10. Earth's Water, Between Sky and Sea Part 3: Water in Human History: Past and Future 11. Water and Man's Rise to Civilization 12. Problems for the Twenty-First Century 13. Butterflies and Humans in a Warming Greenhouse 14. Back to the Ice Age? 15. Conclusion-the End of the Story? Notes Bibliography Index
Covering a vast array of scientific fields and recent discoveries, this book tracks a remarkable substance in its liquid, solid, and gaseous states as it cycles through the seas, the atmosphere, land, icecaps and under the earth. Robert Kandel describes what we humans are doing to the water cycle and the climate and explains where we are heading.
Robert Kandel is a senior scientist of the C.N.R.S. (National Scientific Research Agency of France). He is a member of NASA's Earth Radiation Science Team and chief scientist for the French-Russian-German ScaRaB radiation mission and is currently working on a joint European-Japanese satellite project to observe clouds, aerosols, and radiation. He is the author of several books, including Earth and Cosmos and Our Changing Climate. He was born in Brooklyn and now lives in Paris, France.
"[A]n audacious tour de force that sweeps across time and space at a breathtaking pace... a masterful treatment of a complex subject that is of vital and growing importance." -- Nature "It is impossible to overestimate the importance of water to our daily lives and our place in the universe. This point may seem obvious but it gains fresh currency in Kandel's Water From Heaven... there is plenty here to fascinate." -- Washington Post Book World "Explains in fascinating detail the origins of water on the planet Earth and how the molecules of water have circulated throughout time." -- Natural History "Kandel explains the earth's elaborate and essential-to-life water cycle in a suitably fluid and mesmerizing narrative... A wealth of invaluable information." -- Booklist "The epic story of the world's most vital resource, from the formation of the solar system to the controversial issues and dire concerns of today." -- Library Journal "Kandel tells the story of water, from the big bang to global warming. He examines where it is, why it is, and how we use and abuse it." -- New Scientist "A fine discussion of large scale agriculture which is so heavily dependent on water supplies." -- Northeastern Naturalist "[Kandel's] book will beguile both housewives and hydrologists...for now they'll better appreciate the actual world through which they wander and wonder." -- Peter Wild, U.S. Water News, May 2006 " "A very enjoyable book." -- Neil MacDonald, Environmental Conservation