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What matters now. A publication from Medium about politics, power, and culture.

Climate Change

In GEN. More on Medium.

It doesn’t help anyone.

Politicians focusing on emissions during climate disasters are playing a deadly con game, whether they know it or not.

Last year, when California’s fire season was destroying homes and lives again, Governor Gavin Newsom responded by banning the sale of all new gas-powered cars by 2035.

This year, when parts…


Climate change is frightening and depressing — but that shouldn’t stop us from finding joy in the struggle for a better future

Slash burn behind a clearcut lot in Gifford Pinhcot National Forest, WA. 📷 Doug Bierend

Yesterday, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change issued its latest report on the state and future of Earth’s climate and biosphere. As expected, it was more dire than the last report, which was more dire than the one before, and so on.

And so it will go until, well…

Meanwhile…


The New York Times is right: We need climate self-care more than climate diets

“Relax” by Koijots is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

This weekend The New York Times published a smart, thoughtful review of The Climate Diet, a book I have out this spring from Penguin Press. Over the years I’ve trained myself to let criticism of my work stand for itself. Having written my fair share of reviews of environmental books


The Way We Work Now

Already it is a new day at the EPA under Biden

Photo: Brent Lewis/The Denver Post via Getty Images

The Way We Work Now is a series chronicling how people’s lives and careers have fundamentally changed because of the pandemic.

Brian Kelly, 47, is an emergency responder for the Environmental Protection Agency and member of the American Federation of Government Employees Local 704 based in Ann Arbor, Michigan. …


The pandemic revealed our society’s failings. We’re running out of time to fix them.

Photo: Markus Spiske/Unsplash

Earlier in 2020, as the lockdowns arrived, time started to feel warped. We began to ask ourselves whether we were living in the past or the present or whether we were caught somewhere in between. …


A section of Jakarta’s protective seawall. The capital of Indonesia is sinking at a rate of up to 6.7 inches a year. Photos: Ian Teh

Many of our coastal cities are imperiled, but none have plotted an escape quite as audacious as Jakarta’s

I. The capital of catastrophe

In the 17th and 18th centuries, European workers flocked by the thousands to a faraway colonial Dutch port later to be known as Jakarta. The lure of the tough, six-month ocean journey was easy enough to see: seemingly limitless island forests of clove and nutmeg, spices that commanded a fortune…


A field guide to difficult conversations about climate outside of big cities

Wind turbines near Minot, North Dakota. Photo: Ken Cedeno/Getty Images

State Representative Tiffiny Mitchell has a challenge. She is a Democrat from Oregon’s 32nd District, a beautiful region at the mouth of the Columbia River downstream from Portland. She’s also new to statewide politics in a region that’s seeing a growing urban-rural divide, and her district reflects that chasm. In…


Every political issue will be soon a climate change issue

Greta Thunberg. Photo: Pacific Press/Getty Images

It didn’t take long for Donald Trump to notice he was not named TIME magazine’s person of the year for 2019.

“So ridiculous,” Trump tweeted shortly after TIME revealed 16-year-old climate change activist Greta Thunberg as its choice. “Greta must work on her Anger Management problem, then go to a…


When I was young I thought I would grow up in an ever improving world. Now, I fear for my son.

Photo: David McNew/Getty Images

When I grew up, things generally got better. I was born in the 1970s. Think black-and-white TV, analog telephones, smoking around children, and rubbish food. What’s more, as a Londoner, I lived through the IRA bombings, social unrest like the miners’ strike and poll tax riots, and of course the…


Illustration: Jacqueline Tam

Hurricanes, erosion, and hot, windless doldrums threaten to upend one of Hawaii’s most revered athletic events

Only three canoes dared to put in for the first Molokaʻi Hoe in 1952. The race was not yet the spectacle it would become more than 50 years later. It’s the Super Bowl of canoe paddling and a staple of the Hawaiian sports scene in which over 1,000 participants from…

GEN

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