Seldom are missed books truly missed opportunities — but nothing could possibly be worse than missing an opportunity that could have saved your life, and those of your family and friends.
I’ve spent my life living in rural America, some of it in blue state Vermont, some of it in red state upstate New York. They’re quite alike in many ways. And quite wonderful. It’s important that even in an urbanized and suburbanized country, we continue to take rural America seriously. And the thing that makes Vermont in particular so special, and I hope this book captures some of it, is the basic underlying civility of its political life. That’s rooted in the town meeting.
It’s easy to get struck by existential dread when you’re reading about climate change. Personally I think there hasn’t been enough attention on the psychological effects of this. Although you can find a few fantastic articles on the subject – such as this one from Grist. My personal favourite antidote for climate fear is to throw yourself into pragmatic climate action.
“Why should people divest from the fossil fuel sector?” Lisa Renstrom pauses and thinks. “Let me count the ways.”
We face a profoundly uncertain future, but all we really need for the road ahead is our moral compass and our deep and abiding love. I am asking you—I am begging you—to think about what that means to you, and what you can do rise to the challenge. My life, and your life, and all the life around us—they’re worth fighting for.
This book explores a lot of territory. It discusses climate science, climate policy, and aquifer depletion — as well as mythology, meditation, and beekeeping. These and other topics herein have been written about in greater detail elsewhere. There are entire volumes devoted to backyard chickens. So why mention them here, in a book with “climate” in its title?
If nothing is done to stop the impact of climate change, some of the oldest living cultures in the world could die out. An all-Indigenous youth activist group in Australia has risen to the challenge.
We’re under attack, said author and climate campaigner Bill McKibben, and the only way to defeat the enemy is to declare a global war against the destructive practices that threaten the world’s imperiled ecosystems and human civilization as we know it.
Thus it’s not inappropriate to ask what happened to all the apparent political momentum the climate change movement had ten or fifteen years ago, and why a movement so apparently well organized, well funded, and backed by so large a scientific consensus failed so completely.
Although the title is ‘This Changes Everything’, you are left with the sense that very little is actually changing for the better at all.
On May 3 some of the biggest ever global actions against climate change began, and are running for 12 consecutive days through Sunday, May 15.
The movement to stop fossil fuel development just keeps winning.