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Climatology, the study of climate, is no longer regarded as a single discipline that treats climate as something that fluctuates only within the unchanging boundaries described by historical statistics. The field has recognized that climate is something that changes continually under the influence of physical and biological forces and so, cannot be understood in isolation but rather, is one that includes diverse scientific disciplines that play their role in understanding a highly complex coupled "whole system" that is the earth's climate. The modern era of climatology is echoed in this book. On the one hand it offers a broad synoptic perspective but also considers the regional standpoint, as it is this that affects what people need from climatology. Aspects on the topic of climate change - what is often considered a contradiction in terms - is also addressed. It is all too evident these days that what recent work in climatology has revealed carries profound implications for economic and social policy; it is with these in mind that the final chapters consider acumens as to the application of what has been learned to date.