Why can't Washington focus on climate crisis?
Episode 76 Sneak Peek
You know David Wallace-Wells for his insightful, urgent reporting on climate crisis. His 2017 essay “The Uninhabitable Earth,” which ran in New York and became its most-read piece, lays bare the crushing stakes of climate catastrophe as we continue to hit increasingly concerning benchmarks for warming, pollution, natural disasters — which bring misery and suffering on their own as they point toward a future that is far worse. Throughout the essay, David suggests that we aren’t concerned enough about where we’re headed. He gets across what our shortsighted and profit-motivated leaders are never willing to: parts of the world will become unlivable in the next century, the political and economic systems that led us here will meet cascades of failure, we’re heading toward an event of mass death that few have taken it upon themselves to fight back against.
David is our guest this week, and part of our conversation will focus on that lack of focus — why avoiding climate disaster isn’t at the center of mainstream political agendas, and what the planetary cost of this omission will be. We’ve seen the American political establishment plump for more arms to escalate the war in Ukraine and focus messaging on high gas prices, but we have yet to see the climate crisis be treated as a major issue that will affect all of us in the years to come. With David on the show with us, we’ll discuss the stark reality of impending disaster that we’re heading toward, but also the possibilities we have to avert it, the political will we’ll need to achieve those possibilities, and why that political will seems so lacking.
Paying subscribers can watch our conversation when it’s released Friday. The podcast will be available to everyone Saturday through Pandora, Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and more.