The Forgiving Air

Richard Somerville is Distinguished Professor Emeritus and Research Professor at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California, San Diego. He formally retired in 2007 but remains active in research, education and outreach. He was a Coordinating Lead Author in Working Group I for the 2007 Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

Richard Somerville is a climate scientist and the author of The Forgiving Air: Understanding Environmental Change, a new edition of which was published in 2008 by the American Meteorological Society.

"Perhaps the most important function of climate science on an issue of broad interest like global warming is to help educate the public and to provide useful input into the policy process. Governments, corporations, and individuals should listen to and learn from the science, just as intelligent people listen to their physicians when their health is in question. Good science input can inform wise policymaking. The role of scientists is to help assess the science and present it in an intelligible way that is policy relevant."

- The Forgiving Air: Understanding Environmental Change

Recommended Websites

This site contains extensive information and resources on climate science communication and outreach. It includes results from Richard Somerville's ongoing collaboration in this area with Susan Joy Hassol.
This Scripps Institution of Oceanography (UCSD) site describes Richard Somerville's research interests, honors and awards, and mentoring of graduate students. It includes an up-to-date list of his most important refereed scientific research publications.
This Wikipedia article on Richard Somerville contains many useful links.
This is the site of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Here you may download free copies of the most recent IPCC reports, the single most authoritative summary of the state of the science of climate change.
This site is run by a small group of first-rate climate scientists and is an up-to-date complement to the IPCC site. The site is nimble and searchable. The main postings by climate scientists are excellent, but the comments submitted by bloggers are of variable quality.