Wired magazine has a big old feature on ethanol this month, but the article that caught my attention was a piece on two guys that don’t exactly approve of Al Gore- and he doesn’t like them very much either. These two upstart hippies-turned enviro-political consultants (enviroliticos?)-turned visionaries wrote an article a few years ago called The Death of Environmentalism wherein they criticized the misguided political maneuvering of the Environmental lobby, and of course ruffled a few feathers. They’re back, with a book detailing their plan to save the world.

Here’s the plan: Environmental leaders are pushy whiners who hate strong economies and development, right? So that is why nobody listens to them, plus their policy plans won’t even cut emissions, they’ll just slow them down a bit since emerging economies like India and China are producing more carbon emissions all the time. Environmentalism needs to be tied to economic development and seek large scale global impacts. It will require a gigantic government investment in clean technology- like what Bush said last weekend (optimistic view, pessimistic view), only actually gigantic, actually spurred by the government, and actually going to happen. (Oh no, Freemarketeers! You are upset about this! Tell your sorrow to the invisible hand.) A new Manhattan Project! To protect us from Nature, not Nazis.

So their plan seems at least fresh, bold, and interesting, which is more than can be said for emissions percentages and cap and trade programs. I’m looking forward to reading their book for the details- it comes out Oct 4th, and boy will I be cranky if it’s not printed with non-toxic inks on recycled paper. They’re doing a reading at Politics and Prose 7pm October 12th in DC, according to their organization’s website. Any takers?

1 Response to “Currents”

  1. 1 virescent October 2, 2007 at 6:41 pm

    Update: In the Wired blogs, a blogpost highlights some of the criticisms of the pseudo-hippies Nordhaus and Shellenberger’s work- some of which were in the original article. Shellenberger has posted a response to those criticisms as the first comment. The debate escalates…

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