GUSTAVE SPETH served as Chair of the Council on Environmental Quality in the Carter Administration, was Administrator of the UN Development Programme for 6 years, Dean of the Yale School of the Environment for 10, and is a co-founder of the World Resources Institute and the Natural Resources Defense Council. Speth believes that a meaningful response to the climate crisis is impossible if we simply focus on climate or energy or emissions. It calls for a new system of political economy to replace the current system which is not up to the challenge. Speth has released two books this year: THE NEW SYSTEMS READER: Alternatives for a Failed Economy and THEY KNEW: The US Federal Governments Fifty-Year Role in Causing the Climate Crisis
FRANCES MOORE LAPPE-50 Years Since DIET FOR A SMALL PLANET introduced a plant-based diet to most AmericansWritten on October 26th, 2021
Fifty years ago, FRANCES MOORE LAPPE shared a booklet about global hunger with friends in Berkeley. That booklet became DIET FOR A SMALL PLANET, brought plant-based food to the mainstream, and sold over 3M copies. Fifty years later, we know that the food system is responsible for 37% of greenhouse gases – cattle alone for 14%; we understand the costly and deadly health impacts of diet and obesity; and we’re aware that Ag and food employ more lobbyists than the fossil fuel industry. The book – now in a 50th Anniversary edition with a new introduction and new recipes – has never been more needed. Learn more at dietforasmallplanet.org and democracymovement.us
Need some good news about climate? I’m excited to speak with economist ROBERT POLLIN and union leader DAVE CAMPBELL, Secretary-Treasurer of United Steelworkers Local 675 in Carson CA, about the California Climate Jobs Plan. Initiated and paid for by labor unions, written by Pollin and others, it pursues the state’s clean energy goals through 2030, by creating a million new jobs and offering a fair transition for those who will lose theirs. You can learn more at californiaclimatejobsplan.com
In 1999, MICHAEL MANN co-authored a scientific paper that included a graph that tracked temperatures over the last 1000 years. Known as “the hockey stick,” it showed that climate change was real. His integrity attacked, he learned the strategies and methods of those who would postpone and disable our efforts to deal with climate change. In his latest book, The New Climate War, Mann debunks false narratives and argues that all is not lost. He believes Biden is on the right track, but warns we won’t succeed unless we learn to recognize and defeat the latest tactics of the forces of inaction.
Planetary health is by definition big picture, but it’s made immediate by the pandemic. I see our environmental goals as an effective reckoning with climate change and a healthy relationship with the rest of nature. I’ll talk about that relationship with SAM MYERS, Research Scientist at Harvard’s Chan School of Public Health and the Founding Director of the Planetary Health Alliance (planetaryhealthalliance.org). Myers is one of the editors of PLANETARY HEALTH: Protecting Nature to Protect Ourselves, which explores the impacts of environmental change on human health and offers solutions by reimagining our cities, our food and energy systems, and even our economics and ethics.