Climate Change Reading List


The following reading list is a sampling of titles that attempts to explain the vast impact of climate change on our planet. Learn more about what we can do to help mitigate climate change but also manage its impact, both locally and globally. If fiction is more your speed, we invite you to explore the growing genre of "cli-fi." While some cli-fi is speculative and apocalyptic, other works reflect on the effects of climate change on contemporary daily life. You'll also find suggested films, and young adult and children's books on this topic.



Understanding the Effects of Climate Change



Adapting to Climate Change, The New York Times, 2020


Angry Weather: Heat Waves, Floods, Storms, and the New Science of Climate Change, Friederike Otto, 2020

Beloved beasts : fighting for life in an age of extinction, Michelle Nijhuis, 2021


Chesapeake Requiem: A Year with the Watermen of Vanishing Tangier Island, Earl Swift, 2018

Disasterology : dispatches from the frontlines of the climate crisis, Samantha Montano, 2021

Enviromedics: The Impact of Climate Change on Human Health, Jay Lemery, 2017


Hurricane Lizards and Plastic Squid: the Fraught and Fascinating Biology of Climate Change, Thor Hanson, 2021

Lyme: The First Epidemic of Climate Change, Mary Beth Pfeiffer, 2018

Available as an eBook on Libby and OverDrive

The new climate war : the fight to take back the planet, Michael E. Mann, 2021


Tales of Two Planets: Stories of Climate Change and Inequality in a Divided World, edited by John Freeman, 2020

Available as an eBook in Libby and OverDrive using the “Partner Libraries” feature


They knew : the US federal government's fifty-year role in causing the climate crisis, James Gustave Speth, 2021

Warmth : coming of age at the end of the world, Daniel Sherell, 2021


The Water Will Come: Rising Seas, Sinking Cities, and the Remaking of the Civilized World, Jeff Goodell, 2017

Available as an eBook in Libby and OverDrive

A world on the wing : the global odyssey of migratory birds, Scott Weidensaul, 2021

Available as an eBook in Libby and OverDrive


Books to Inspire Action

Climate Justice: Hope, Resilience, and the Fight for a Sustainable Future, Mary Robinson, 2018


Drawdown: The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse Global Warming, edited by Paul Hawken

Available as an eBook on Libby and OverDrive

The end of ice : bearing witness and finding meaning in the path of climate disruption, Dahr Jamail, 2020


Electrify: An Optimist's Playbook for our Clean Energy Future, Saul Griffith, 2021


The Future Earth: A Radical Vision for What's Possible in the Age of Warming, Eric Holthaus, 2020

Available as an eBook and eAudiobook on Libby and OverDrive


The future we choose : surviving the climate crisis, Christiana Figueres, 2020

Available as an eBook on Libby and OverDrive


Hot stocks : investing for impact and profit in a warming world, James Ellman, 2020


How to avoid a climate disaster : the solutions we have and the breakthroughs we need, Bill Gates, 2021

Available as an eBook and eAudiobook on Libby and OverDrive


How to prepare for climate change: a practical guide to surviving the chaos, David Pogue, 2021


The New Climate War: The Fight to Take Back our Planet, by Michael E. Mann, 2021


No One Is Too Small to Make a Difference, Greta Thunberg, 2021

Available as an eBook and eAudiobook on Libby and OverDrive


Our house is on fire : scenes of a family and a planet in crisis, Greta Thunberg, 2020

Available as an eBook and eAudiobook on Libby and OverDrive


Paradise : one town's struggle to survive an American wildfire, Lizzie Johnson, 2021

Available as an eAudiobook on Libby and OverDrive


Protest Kitchen: Fight Injustice, Save the Planet, and Fuel Your Resistance One Meal at a Time, Carol J. Adams, 2018

Available as an eBook with no wait list on Hoopla via BPL eCard


Regeneration : ending the climate crisis in one generation, Paul Hawken, 2021


Saving Us: A Climate Scientest's Case for Hope and Healing in a Divided World, Katharine Hayhoe, 2021


The Story of More: How We Got to Climate Change and Where to Go From Here, Hope Jahren, 2020

Available as an eBook and eAudiobook on Libby and OverDrive



Cli-Fi (Climate Fiction)

After the Flood, Kassandra Montag

A mother and daughter navigate dangerous waters and lawless bands of people after extreme flooding covers most of the Earth in water. Exciting adventure story with a fearless heroine.

Available as an eBook on Libby and OverDrive

Available as an eBook with no wait list on Hoopla via BPL eCard


Appleseed : A Novel, Matt Bell

Part speculative epic, part tech thriller, part reinvented fairy tale, Appleseed is an unforgettable meditation on climate change; corporate, civic, and familial responsibility; manifest destiny; and the myths and legends that sustain us all.

Available as an eBook on Libby and OverDrive


Hummingbird Salamander, Jeff VanderMeer

A speculative thriller involving endangered species. A deceased ecoterrorist leaves a note with the main character, Jane. She begins a long search which triggers events that leave Jane and her family in danger.

Available as an eBook and eAudiobook on Libby and OverDrive


The Membranes : A Novel, Chi Ta-Wei

Humanity has migrated to domes at the bottom of the sea to escape devastating climate change. The world is dominated by powerful media conglomerates and runs on cyborg labor. This visionary and sublime novel by a Chinese author stands out for its queer and trans themes.


Blackfish City, Sam J. Miller

After the climate wars, a floating city is constructed in the Arctic Circle, complete with geothermal heating and sustainable energy. Crime and corruption have set in, and a new disease is ravaging the population.

Available as an eBook and eAudiobook on Libby and OverDrive

Available as an eBook with no wait list on Hoopla via BPL eCard


The End We Start From, Megan Hunter

In poetic prose, a woman tells the story of traveling with her infant in a world that’s fallen into chaos due to mass flooding.

Available as an eBook and eAudiobook on Libby and OverDrive


Flight Behavior, Barbara Kingsolver

Set in Appalachia, this parable of catastrophe and denial explores how the complexities we encounter in life lead us to believe in our particular chosen truths.

Available as an eBook and eAudiobook on Libby and OverDrive

Available as an eBook with no wait list on Hoopla via BPL eCard


The Year of the Flood, Margaret Atwood (second book in the MaddAddam Trilogy)

Failure to halt climate change has created an out of control weather system, flooded coastlines, and one long, sticky summer. The few who survived the plague scrounge for food while dodging genetically modified creatures gone feral. FROM FIRST BOOK

Available as an eBook and eAudiobook on Libby and OverDrive


Parable of the Sower, Octavia Butler (first book in the Earthseed series)

Global climate change and economic crises lead to social chaos in the 2020s, including pervasive water shortage. Written in diary form from the perspective of an adolescent girl who suffers from hyperempathy, a debilitating sensitivity to others' emotions.

Available as an eBook on Libby and OverDrive

Available as an eBook with no wait list on Hoopla via BPL eCard


The Wall, John Lanchester

An island nation ravaged by the Change has built an enormous concrete barrier around its coastline. A new Defender has one task: to protect his section of the Wall from the Others, the desperate souls trapped amid the rising seas outside.

Available as an eBook on Libby and OverDrive


Weather, Jenny Offill

Hired by her famous podcaster mentor to answer letters from increasingly polarized fans, a librarian struggles to navigate the tension between mundane daily concerns and looming apocalypse.

Available as an eBook and eAudiobook on Libby and OverDrive



YA Fiction



Ashfall, Mike Mullin (first book in the Ashfall trilogy)

After the eruption of the Yellowstone supervolcano destroys his city and its surroundings, fifteen-year-old Alex must journey from Iowa to Illinois to find his family, trying to survive in a transformed landscape in which all the old rules of living have vanished.

Available as an eBook on Libby and OverDrive


Life as We Knew It, Susan Beth Pfeffer (first book in the Last Survivors series)

Through journal entries, sixteen-year-old Miranda describes her family's struggle to survive after a meteor hits the moon, causing worldwide tsunamis, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions.

Available as an eBook and eAudiobook on Libby and OverDrive

Available as an eBook with no waitlist on Hoopla via BPL eCard


Orleans, Sherri Smith

After a string of devastating hurricanes and a severe outbreak of Delta Fever, the Gulf Coast has been quarantined. Fen de la Guerre must deliver her tribe leader's baby over the Wall into the Outer States before her blood becomes tainted with Delta Fever.

Available as an eBook on Libby and OverDrive


Ship Breaker, Paolo Bacigalupi

In a futuristic world, teenager Nailer scavenges copper wiring from grounded oil tankers for a living, but when he finds a beached clipper ship with a girl in the wreckage, he has to decide if he should strip the ship for its wealth or rescue the girl.



Children’s Fiction


The Flooded Earth, Mardi McConnochie

Set 40 years after a flood that ravages the earth, two twins set out in their family’s small sailboat to try to find their disappeared father.


The Lonely Polar Bear, by Khoa Lê

An orphaned polar bear, accompanied for a while by a little girl, travels through the Arctic, seeking another of his kind. Includes information about polar bears and their habitat.


The Lorax, by Dr. Seuss

In this cautionary tale of greed and environmental destruction, the lovable Lorax tries to save the Truffula Forest and its inhabitants from disaster at the hands of the cantankerous Once-ler.


The Magic School Bus and the Climate Challenge, by Joanna Cole

Ms. Frizzle takes her kids on a whirlwind tour, from the Arctic to the equator so they can see telltale signs of climate change.


Never Say Die, Will Hobbs

Half-Inuit Nick and his white brother, Ryan, meet and share an adventure on the Firth River in the Canadian Arctic, facing white water, wild animals, and fierce weather as Ryan documents the effects of climate change on caribou for National Geographic magazine.


Travels with Gannon and Wyatt: Greenland, Patti Wheeler

While preparing for a dogsled mission in Greenland, Gannon and Wyatt receive a desperate mayday call from an Inuit family stranded in the far north. Suddenly, Gannon and Wyatt's expedition to study climate change and Greenlandic culture turns into something far more dangerous--a mission to save lives.

Available as an eBook on Libby and OverDrive


What is Climate Change?, Gail Hermann

Presents an overview of climate change, discussing if humans are at fault for the rapidly warming Earth, and describes why climate change has recently become a political issue.



Videos

Before the Flood

DVD, National Geographic, 2016

A documentary presenting a riveting account of the dramatic changes occurring around the world due to climate change, as well as the actions individuals and society can take to prevent catastrophic disruption of life on this planet. With Leonardo DiCaprio.


Being the change: a new kind of climate documentary

DVD, based on the book by Peter Kalmus, 2018

By merging science and spirituality, the film tells Kalmus' story of his successful quest to slash his climate impact to a tenth of the national U.S. average.


Climate Change in the 2020s: What Impacts to Expect

Streaming video, CBS This Morning, December 2019

A meteorologist describes recent changes in weather patterns and why they will likely become more severe in 2020 and beyond.


The Disarming Case to Act Right Now on Climate Change

Streaming video, TEDx, Greta Thunberg, 2018

Young Nobel Peace Prize-winning activist expresses alarm about climate change and questions why adults don’t take climate change more seriously.


Is the Weather Actually Becoming More Extreme?

Streaming video, TED-Ed, R. Saravanan, 2019

An educator uses animation to explain why more extreme weather isn’t just a coincidence.


Rising tides: Understanding Sea Level Rise

Streaming video, NASA Climate Change, 2020

Brief video explains via text and animation why even minute sea level increases could drastically affect human civilization.