Elizabeth Kolbert on Coming to Grips with a Warming Planet

June 12, 2017

Host: Paul Fidalgo

We want to believe that climate change can be stopped, that humanity can summon the political will to take decisive and meaningful action to avert disaster and save civilization. But the difficult reality is that even if we make our very best efforts to rein in greenhouse gas emissions, climate change is coming. The real question now is how bad are we going to allow it to get?

There is perhaps no one better suited to discuss humanity’s unwitting impact on the planet than this episode’s guest, Elizabeth Kolbert. As the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History and as a staff writer at The New Yorker she has chronicled the agonizing but undeniable realities of the ecological damage wrought by humans and the complicated politics of confronting — or ignoring — that damage.

Kolbert talks to Point of Inquiry host Paul Fidalgo about how we as a society and as individuals think and talk about climate change and the inevitable environmental and political disruptions to come.

BONUS FEATURE: Point of Inquiry bids a fond farewell to Nora Hurley, the show’s producer since 2014, with a kind of “exit interview.” Nora and Paul discuss what’s next for her, as well as what working on (and listening to) Point of Inquiry has meant to them both.

Links Mentioned in This Episode:

The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History
Elizabeth Kolbert at The New Yorker

Related Episodes

Carl Pope on Trump, Paris, and the Climate: We’re Going to Be Okay
June 2, 2017