The World Is On Fire. There’s No Right Way to Feel About It.
By Mary Annaïse Heglar
Earlier this week, I had a call with a reporter about the seeming rise in climate nihilism. You know, that thing where people survey the severity of the climate crisis and decide it’s too much, it’s too late, let’s give up. In my time as a climate-conscious person, I’ve noticed that this feeling of nihilism in the public climate discourse tends to come and go, and it seems to be almost always when there’s a new batch of unprecedented disasters all at once, which means that a new batch of people are confronting just how much trouble we’re in.
That often looks like a lot of people giving up. But if you look closer, I think, it looks more like a lot of people just getting started.
I know if I’m being honest about my early days waking up to the climate crisis, I had a hardcore nihilism spiral. Once I realized that there was no “stopping” global warming, I felt like all was lost and there was no point. I think it’s actually a pretty rational and relatable reaction.
The difference now is that there’s a lot more people going through that process in public–and a lot more people actually listening. When I went through my process, I was not yet a public person. I didn’t even have Twitter yet. But even when I tried to talk about it offline, people shut their ears. So, in that way, I actually think what we’re seeing in terms of “nihilism” is progress. And we should let people grieve without chiding their emotions, and welcome them into the fold once they’re ready to get to work.
Leave Hawai’i Alone
By Amy Westervelt
Maui County, Hawaii, where residents are being asked to ration water while tourists do whatever the fuck they want, is being so overburdened by visitors that its mayor is pleading with the airlines to reduce the number of flights or passengers. His island’s infrastructure, shaken by a global pandemic and the climate crisis, can’t handle the onslaught right now. Hawaiians are literally begging people not to go there. To let them get on top of spiking Covid-19 cases without having to worry if they have enough water.
Greentrolling in the Washington Post
By Mary Annaïse Heglar
Oh, heeey! Today, the front page of The Washington Post’s business section is set to feature the social media trend greentrolling, which is near and dear to our hearts here at Hot Take. If you’re unfamiliar, it’s basically just cyber bullying the literal shit out of fossil fuel companies and their lobbying groups on any social media platforms. It can be calling them out on greenwashing or pandering to people of color and women or just calling them out for being a bitch. Really depends on your mood.
We Need to Talk about Press Freedom in America
By Amy Westervelt
A couple weeks ago, UnEarthed, a journalism project funded by Greenpeace, published an undercover investigation they’d been working on for years. In a video and accompanying article, journalist Lawrence Carter explained how he and his colleagues had set up the operation: they posed as high-level recruiters, who reached out to two men who had recently been senior level lobbyists for ExxonMobil. They claimed to be recruiting for a company in a similar industry and were thus very eager to understand exactly how Keith McCoy and Dan Easley—the lobbyists in question—had pulled off so many big wins for Exxon. They were happy to oblige. If you haven’t seen the resulting story, you can watch the incredible video here and read up on it here. I’m gonna focus on how they got it, and why we don’t see more of this kind of thing in the U.S.
Your weekly round-up of climate coverage.
Photos: Wildfires Are Igniting Around the World by Brian Kahn for Earther
Pacific Northwest Salmon Are the Latest Heat Wave Casualty by Brian Kahn for Earther
Utah's Great Salt Lake Is Officially at Its Lowest Point in Recorded History by Tom McKay for Earther
Beetles, drought, and fires are a ticking time bomb in the West by Benji Jones for Vox
Huge 'heat dome' to bring punishing temperatures to the US. Again. by Oliver Milman for Grist
As wildfires worsen, more California farms are deemed too risky to insure by Jake Bittle for Grist
Is climate change happening faster than expected? A climate scientist explains. by Zoya Teirstei for Grist
Coastal Landfills Are No Match for Rising Seas, by Dave Lindorff for The Nation
Flash Floods Are Proof That Climate Disaster Is Already Here, by Matthew Neale for Vice
11,000 Scientists Declared a Climate Emergency In 2019. Now It's Even Worse, by Radhamely De Leon for Vice
Greenland: enough ice melted on single day to cover Florida in two inches of water, by Oliver Milman for The Guardian
Turkish fires sweeping through tourist areas are the hottest on record, by Jonathan Watts for The Guardian
Critical measures of global heating reaching tipping point, study finds, by Katharine Gammon for The Guardian
‘Record-shattering’ heat becoming much more likely, says climate study, by Damian Carrington for The Guardian
Flash floods will be more common as climate crisis worsens, say scientists, by Fiona Harvey for The Guardian
Can Arctic Animals Keep Up With Climate Change? Scientists are Trying to Find Out, by Haley Dunleavy for InsideClimate News
81 Million Americans Suffer Under Heat Watches and Warnings, by Brian Kahn for Earther
The Climate Presidency
Democrats Call $550 Billion Infrastructure Bill a Down Payment on Climate By Coral Davenport and Lisa Friedman for the New York Times
Earth's On Fire and We're Arguing About Cheeseburgers, So That's Great, by Greg Walters for Vice
Biden wants to turn America’s auto fleet electric. It’s harder than it seems, by Juliet Eilperin and Dino Grandoni for The Washington Post
Red States Seek to Block Biden Update to Key Climate Metric, by Maxine Joselow for Scientific American
White House nominates Jainey Bavishi, climate adaptation expert, to key NOAA post, by Jason Samenow and Kasha Patel for The Washington Post
The U.S.’s First-Ever Fossil Fuel Infrastructure Ban Is Even More Important Than It Seems by Brian Kahn and Dharna Noor for Earther
Solar Company Sues to Stop Vineyard Wind Project by Molly Taft for Earther
The Lawyer Who Beat Chevron Has Been Found Guilty of Criminal Contempt by Dharna Noor for Earther
Climate Crisis Catches Power Companies Unprepared By Brad Plumer and Ivan Penn for the New York Times
Why Texas fossil fuel unions signed on to this new climate plan by Emily Pontecorvo for Grist
Austin Mutual Aid Raised Millions During the Texas Freeze. Where Is It Now? By Hannah Smothers for Vice
5% of Earth's Power Plants Create 73% of the Energy Sector's Emissions, by Audrey Carleton for Vice
How Do You Convince People to Eat Less Meat? By Jan Dutkiewicz for The New Republic
The truth behind corporate climate pledges, by Jocelyn Timperley for The Guardian
Climate Activists Target a Retrofitted 'Peaker Plant' in Queens, Decrying New Fossil Fuel Infrastructure, by Kristoffer Tigue for InsideClimate News
Justice Is Justice Is Justice
A Carbon Calculation: How Many Deaths Do Emissions Cause? by John Schwartz for the New York Times
As wildfires rage, a ‘protection gap’ threatens Californians by Naveena Sadasivam for Grist
A Malawian farmer visiting the US wants to know: ‘Why not do more on the climate crisis?’ by Lauren Zanolli for The Guardian
Three Americans create enough carbon emissions to kill one person, study finds, by Oliver Milman for The Guardian
Climate in Culture
'Parable of the Sower' Is Finally Becoming a Feature Film by Dharna Noor for Earther
Cars Are Winning the War Against Pedestrians and Bikers, by Doug Gordon for The New Republic
New Zealand rated best place to survive global societal collapse, by Damian Carrington for The Guardian
Roses out, olives in: the new English garden in a time of climate crisis, by James Tapper for The Guardian
Warming Trends: Couples Disconnected in Their Climate Concerns Can Learn About Global Warming Over 200 Years or in 18 Holes, by Katelyn Weisbrod for InsideClimate News
Glimmers of Hope
The Great Barrier Reef is a victim of climate change – but it could be part of the solution, by Peter Thomson and Ove Hoegh-Guldberg for The Guardian
The Guardian view on restoring the golden age of rail: green glamour | Editorial, by the Editors of The Guardian
Inside Clean Energy: A Geothermal Energy Boom May Be Coming, and Ex-Oil Workers Are Leading the Way, by Dan Gearino for InsideClimate News
Gretchen Daily's conservation quest with the Natural Capital Project - Washington Post, by Tik Root for The Washington Post
Endangered species' recovery measured by IUCN's new 'green status', by Tik Root for The Washington Post
Wishing Harm to Anti-Vaxxers Won't Solve Anything by Dharna Noor for Earther
Times Team Explains Chicago's Climate Problem Visually, by Sarah Bahr for the New York Times
He Wrote a Gardening Column. He Ended Up Documenting Climate Change. By Zach St. George for the New York Times
Humans are adaptable. But can we handle the climate crisis? by Eve Andrews for Grist
Image for 6 Surreal Images Showing Rare Snowfall in Tropical Brazil, by Dharna Noor for Earther