The Ripple Effect
The Ripple Effect
The Fate of Fresh Water in the Twenty-First Century
Scribner Book Company, Hardcover, 9781416535454, 448pp.
Publication Date: June 7, 2011
The questions he sought to answer were urgent: Will there be enough water to satisfy demand? What are the threats to its quality? What is the state of our water infrastructure both the pipes that bring us freshwater and the levees that keep it out? How secure is our water supply from natural disasters and terrorist attacks? Can we create new sources for our water supply through scientific innovation? Is water a right like air or a commodity like oil and who should control the tap? Will the wars of the twenty-first century be fought over water?
Like Daniel Yergin's classic "The Prize: The Epic Quest for Oil, Money & Power," Prud homme's "The Ripple Effect "is a masterwork of investigation and dramatic narrative. With striking instincts for a revelatory story, Prud homme introduces readers to an array of colorful, obsessive, brilliant and sometimes shadowy characters through whom these issues come alive. Prud homme traversed the country, and he takes readers into the heart of the daily dramas that will determine the future of this essential resource from the alleged murder of a water scientist in a New Jersey purification plant, to the epic confrontation between salmon fishermen and copper miners in Alaska, to the poisoning of Wisconsin wells, to the epidemic of intersex fish in the Chesapeake Bay, to the wars over fracking for natural gas. Michael Pollan has changed the way we think about the food we eat; Alex Prud homme will change the way we think about the water we drink. Informative and provocative, "The Ripple Effect "is a major achievement.
"A tightly written, thoroughly researched, almost encyclopedic book.”—The Cleveland Plain Dealer
“[Prud’homme] patiently lays out the staggering extent of the world’s water problems.”—The New Yorker
“A reader only has to look at the latest headlines to judge the timeliness of Alex Prud'homme's The Ripple Effect."—The Denver Post
“The Ripple Effect is true to its title, following the myriad reverberations from our use and abuse of this most abundant, ubiquitous resource. The book plunges in and rarely comes up for air.”—Washington Post