May 19, 2024

Energy, Food and Melting Ice

teaching at the Middlebury College environmental journalism fellows workshop
Bill McKibben, arguably the foremost environmentalist in the world now, and a great reporter, at the Middlebury College environmental journalism fellows workshop in California, 2010. Photo/Keith Schneider

I read with interest the interviews with Bill McKibben and Amory Lovins that Yale Environment 360 posted today and in February. Good stuff. Perplexing and nerve-wracking all at the same time.

Amory’s optimism about the prospects for clean energy, in its consistency over the last 30 years, reminds me of Lester Brown’s equally long-term pessimism about the world’s capacity to feed itself. Both have the technical details in place to make plausible cases but the actual events deny support for the theses.

Bill’s interview sounds like the several conversations I’ve had with him in recent months. A discouraging geopolitcal cocktail. Two shots escalating despair. One shot personal determination. Add melting ice.

— Keith Schneider

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