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Michael Shellenberger

with moderator James Strock

Recorded July 22nd, 2020


Michael Shellenberger with moderator James Strock, July 22, 2020

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Michael Shellenberger, the founder and president of Environmental Progress, an independent, nonpartisan research organization based in Berkeley, CA, has been fighting for a greener planet for decades. He helped save the world’s last unprotected redwoods, co-created the predecessor to today’s Green New Deal, and led a successful effort by climate scientists and activists to keep nuclear plants operating, preventing a spike of emissions.

Described as an “ecological modernist” and an “eco-pragmatist,” Time Magazine recognized him as a “Hero of the Environment” in 2008. Other say his writing is the best thing to happen to environmentalism since Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring.

Then in 2019, as some claimed “billions of people are going to die,” contributing to rising anxiety, especially among adolescents, Shellenberger decided that, as a lifelong environmental activist, leading energy expert, and father of a teenage daughter, he needed to speak out to separate science from fiction.

In his book released June 30, 2020, Apocalypse Never: Why Environmental Alarmism Hurts Us All, he brings us up to date on facts about our environment:

–Carbon emissions peaked and have been declining in most developed nations for over a decade.

–Deaths from extreme weather, even in poor nations, declined 80% over the last four decades.

–The risk of Earth warming to dangerously high temperatures is increasingly unlikely, thanks to slowing population growth and abundant natural gas.

Yet the people who are the most alarmist about the problems also tend to oppose the obvious solutions which begs the question: what is really behind the rise of apocalyptic environmentalism?

Schellenberger believes there is a desire among most of us to do the right thing for our planet, yet the new religion of environmental alarmism is preaching fear without love and guilt without redemption, clouding our hope for our planet and our psychological well-being.

His other books include Break Through: Why We Can’t Leave Saving the Planet to Environmentalists, and Love Your Monsters: Post Environmentalism and the Anthropocene

James Strock served as the founding secretary of the California Environmental Protection Agency, as well as chief law enforcement officer of the United States EPA. He is a trustee of the Theodore Roosevelt Association and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

He is a bestselling author of four books on service, politics and leadership, including Theodore Roosevelt on Leadership: Executive Lessons from the Bully Pulpit and Disrupt Politics: Reset Washington.

Strock tours the country speaking on these topics and hosts the popular Serve to Lead podcast. In addition to being a dynamic writer and speaker, he is an entrepreneur and reformer in business and government. Strock’s latest book, Serve to Lead 2.0: 21st Century Leaders Manual, implores organizations and individuals to achieve their greatest potential—and explains exactly how they can.

James attended Harvard College as an undergraduate and received his law degree from Harvard Law School. He also attended New College, Oxford and served to captain in the reserves, Judge Advocate General of the U.S. Army.

Get ready to join Michael in conversation, Wednesday, July 22.

In the meantime, we invite you to take a moment now to help shape this upcoming conversation:

Check out the list of questions submitted by other registered attendees, and then vote to support any of the ones that match your own interests.

Feel free to add your own question. Then spread the word to make sure others have the chance to help move your question to the top of the shared list.

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    What do the terms “ecological modernist” and “eco-pragmatist” mean to you? What does it mean to identify as such?

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    What is the future for environmental activism?

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    What is the last great book you have read?

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    What environmental and political theory/ work have guided your thinking?

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    What was your inspiration for writing “Apocalypse Never: Why Environmental Alarmism Hurts Us All”? What is the takeaway? Should we be afraid of impending doom?

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    What has most surprised you about the public reaction to your book?

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    What about the animals living in factory farms? Do their lives, their well-being, not matter at all?

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    How do you sleep at night?