Newberry Professor
Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University

Books by Wally (click on ‘PDF’ to download)

CO2: Earth’s Climate Driver, W.S. Boecker, 2018, Geochemical Perspectives, Volume 7, Number 2. This mini-book is based on material I used in my Carbon Cycle class, taught during the 2017 fall semester to graduate and advanced undergraduate students. It contains my view of the role of CO2 in six climate episodes extending from the first two billion years of Earth history to this last one hundred years.(PDF)

CO2: Earth’s Climate Driver , W.S. Boecker, 2018, Eldigio Press, Taken together, the geologic record permits a strong case to be made that CO2 has driven past climate changes. But as made clear by the record for the last 150 kyrs, it has not acted alone. Insolation cycles, ocean circulation reorganizations, latitudinal temperature gradients also contributed. On far longer time scales, so has the Sun’s luminosity. (PDF)

A Geochemist in his Garden of Eden (2016, Eldigio Press)  An autobiography of my scientific career at Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory (PDF)

Wally’s Carbon World (2015 Revised Edition, Eldigio Press) This book is aimed at challenging further thought and debate regarding how Earth’s carbon cycle has influenced climate over the last 800 million years (PDF)
What Drives Glacial Cycles? (2015 Revised Edition, Eldigio Press)  This book outlines an alternate explanation for the tie between orbital cycles and glaciation. (PDF)

How to Build a Habitable Planet: The Story of Earth from the Big Bang to Humankind C.H. Langmuir and W.S. Broecker (2012 Princeton University Press) An Introduction to the origin and evolution of Earth, from the Big Bang through the rise of human civilization. It provides and understanding of Earth in its broadest context, as well as a greater appreciation of its possibly rare ability to sustain life over geologic time. (This book was inspired by my much shorter 1987 book with the same title. However, it was written entirely by Charlie Langmuir using bits of the original. So in a sense, Broecker is an honorary author.)

The Carbon Cycle and Climate Change: Memoirs of my 60 years in Science (2012 Geochemical Perspectives) Science mixed with personal experience (PDF)

The Fate of Greenland: Lessons from Abrupt Climate Change P. Conkling, R. Alley, W.S. Broecker, G. Denton (2011 The MIT Press)  A documentation of Greenland’s warming and investigation of the episodes in Greenland’s climate history for clues about what happens when climate change is abrupt rather that gradual.  Illustrated with photographs taken by Land’s End founder, Gary Comer.

The Great Ocean Conveyor: Discovering the Trigger for Abrupt Climate Change (2010 Princeton University Press)  This book deals with the discovery of the link between ocean circulation and climate change. It introduces readers to the science of abrupt climate change while providing a first-hand account of the field’s history and development.

A Business Executive’s Guide to Global Warming (2009 Revised Edition Eldigio Press) This is a high level summary of the scientific evidence, effects, and possible responses to the problem of global warming.  Required reading for decision and policy makers, and businessmen.. (PDF)

Fixing Climate: What Past Climate Changes Reveal About the Current Threat—and How to Counter it (2008 Hill And Wang) W.S. Broecker and R. Kunzig Deals with the consequences of global warming and the new technologies providing some hope for the future. (This book was written entirely by Rob Kunzig. It was commissioned by philanthropist Gary Comer. The publisher, Hill and Wang, refused to publish it unless Broecker was senior author. Under the circumstances Broecker gave in to this unfair demand. Fortunately, a British publisher (Profile Books) put out a paperback edition under the proper authorship, i.e., Kunzig and Broecker.)

The Role of the Ocean in Climate Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow (2005 Eldigio Press) This book presents the big picture regarding two subjects which dominate thinking with regard to our planet’s climate during glacial times: the role of the Atlantic Ocean’s conveyor circulation in the abrupt reorganizations of the Earth’s climate system, and the cause for the large drop in the atmospheric CO2 content which accompanies each major glaciation. These same two subjects lie at the core of attempts to come to grips with man-induced global warming. (PDF)
Fossil Fuel CO2 and the Angry Climate Beast (2003 Eldigio Press) Created as a companion to a Frontiers of Science lecture series at Columbia, this book discusses the fate and climatic consequences of the CO2 produced by burning fossil fuels, and the effect tripled atmospheric CO2 may have on our climate.  It addresses the limitation of current climate models, and looks at different approaches to reducing atmospheric carbon.  There is also a powerpoint available of the illustrations in this book. (PDF)
The Glacial World According to Wally (2002 Eldigio Press ) 3rd Revised Edition. This is a book on glacial climates Wally used to accompany his course on climate change at Columbia.  It introduces the student to the basics of paleoclimate reconstruction. (PDF)

How To Build A Habiltable Planet (1987 Eldigio Press) An outgrowth of an undergraduate course. The approach is to trace the development of the Earth from its roots in the Big Band to its future in man’s hands. (PDF)

Greenhouse Puzzles (1998 Eldigio Press) W.S. Broecker and T-H Peng,  2nd Revised Edition.
This book treats three major questions: l)  How has fossil fuel CO2 been partitioned among the atmosphere, ocean and terrestrial biosphere? 2) What caused the lowering of atmospheric CO2 during glacial times? 3) What controlled the CO2 content of the atmosphere over the last several hundred million years?
Tracers in the Sea (1982 Eldigio Press) W.S. Broecker and T-H Peng. A book covering ocean chemical cycles with particular emphasis on carbon and its fellow bioutilized elements.  This book was created as a text for use in Chemical Oceanography. (PDF)

Chemical Oceanography (1974 Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, Inc.) This is a summary of the first-order processes taking place within the sea, that affect its chemistry. (PDF)

Chemical Equilibria in the Earth (1971 McGraw Hill) W.S. Broecker and V.M. Oversby An Introduction to thermodymics and its application to chemical and isotopic systems in the earth sciences. (PDF)




Briefs by Wally (Click here)

photo credit: Janice Castro