Thirty years ago, journalist, author and activist Bill McKibben wrote The End of Nature, the first book for a general audience about climate change. He went on to found 350.org, the first global climate change movement, and he has helped launch the fast-growing fossil fuel divestment movement. McKibben, who is the Schumann Distinguished Scholar in Environmental Studies at Middlebury College, has a new book that details where we’ve come in the 30 years since he first warned about the dangers of climate change. Falter: Has the Human Game Begun to Play Itself Out? argues that climate change is proceeding at a far more rapid pace than scientists once predicted and humans are losing the race for survival and their own humanity. McKibben on his 30 year journey, where we are now, and where we are going. This Vermont Conversation was recorded live at Bridgeside Books in Waterbury, VT. (June 12, 2019 broadcast)
Bill McKibben, founder, 350.org and author, Falter: Has the Human Game Begun to Play Itself Out?
On April 5, 2019, a group of marchers set off to walk from from Middlebury to Montpelier, Vermont to press the case for climate action from affected communities to the Vermont State House. The walk was organized by 350 Vermont and dubbed Next Steps: A Climate Solutions Walk. The walk culminated with 300 people in the Vermont State House. On Day 4 of the march, a cold, windswept day featuring sleet and howling gusts, I walked and interviewed marchers ranging from organizer Maeve McBride, to a pair of middle school students, to 85-year old Byron Stookey of Brattleboro, to learn why they were marching for climate justice. (April 10, 2019 broadcast)
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has called for radical reductions in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, but emissions locally, nationally and globally continue to rise. In response, some 54 towns–about one-fourth of Vermont communities–have passed Town Meeting Day resolutions calling for a halt to new fossil fuel infrastructure, 100% renewable energy, and a transition to renewable power. And Vermont students have called for a student strike on March 15, 2019. We talk with Vermont climate action leaders about new strategies for confronting climate change. (March 6, 2019 broadcast)
Maeve McBride, director, 350 Vermont
Leif Taranta, student at Middlebury College, active with Sunrise Movement and the Sunday Night Environmental Group
Jaiel Pulskamp, farmer and field organizer, Re)Generate New Solutions,
Libby Brusa, student, Harwood Union High School, activist with Youth Lobby
A rare meeting of two icons: Bill McKibben, author, activist and founder of 350.org, and Ken Squier, owner of WDEV Radio Vermont and a legendary sports broadcaster who will be inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame in January 2018, held a public conversation moderated by Vermont Conversation host David Goodman on December 6, 2017 at Bridgeside Books in Waterbury, Vermont. McKibben’s latest book, Radio Free Vermont: A Fable of Resistance, is a story about a septuagenarian radio man and his people-powered independent radio station that lead a resistance movement against growing government tyranny. McKibben acknowledges that Squier and WDEV provide the inspiration for this fable. Squier has been an outspoken advocate of independent media and McKibben is a longtime fan of WDEV (and an occasional guest) when not traveling the world leading the movement to halt climate change. The two discuss the world under Trump, the vital role of an independent media, and the way forward. (December 27, 2017 broadcast)
Bill McKibben, author, founder of 350.org
Ken Squier, owner, WDEV Radio Vermont, legendary sports broadcaster, NASCAR Hall of Fame 2018
Amy Goodman, host and executive producer of Democracy Now!, the daily grassroots global news hour, and Bill McKibben, author and founder of the international environmental group 350.org, participated in a public conversation at the Chandler Music Hall in Randolph, Vermont on January 14, 2017. They discuss climate change, the protests against the Dakota Access Pipeline and the Goodman’s ensuing legal battle when North Dakota authorities unsuccessfully charged her with rioting, McKibben’s experience being spied upon by Exxon, the critical role of independent media, and the importance of movements in making change–especially now. This audio is their unabridged 70 minute conversation (thanks to Chandler Music Hall for the recording). (January 18, 2017 broadcast)
Should Vermont divest? A recent study argues that Vermont’s state pension funds have given up $77 million in gains due to investments in fossil fuels. Gov. Peter Shumlin has also recently called for the state to divest, causing a rift with State Treasurer Beth Pearce, who opposes divestment. We speak with a Vermont investment manager about why he advocates for divestment.
Bill McKibben, author, activist and co-founder of the global grassroots climate change organization 350.org, joins David Goodman in a public conversation. Time Magazine called McKibben “the planet’s best green journalist” and the Boston Globe says that he is “probably the country’s most important environmentalist.” In this public conversaiton, McKibben recounts his journey from journalism to activism, the three scariest numbers relating to climate change, the struggle against the Keystone XL pipeline, being arrested, and his other great passion, the Boston Red Sox. This was the inaugural event in the Vermont Town Hall public conversation series. It took place on January 31, 2014, at the Spruce Peak Performing Arts Center in Stowe, VT.