Why generational pressure is the key to climate change policy

Change is coming, but not from the generation that currently holds positions of power.

  • With figures like Greta Thunberg and demonstrations like the global climate strike, it's become apparent that young people are driving the effort to stop climate change.
  • This generational pressure is the key to change. In the same way that smoking became less accepted in society, even frowned upon, so too can the behaviors that have sped up climate change.
  • Moving forward, energy companies will play a major role if they can reimagine themselves as part of the solution to this crisis and forge a better path to save the planet.
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War is an ecological catastrophe

Researchers believe that war exacerbates climate change, threatening the environment and making future wars more likely.

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  • In times of war, otherwise atrocious crimes against nature become routine.
  • The U.S. Department of Defense is one of the largest consumers of fossil fuels in the world.
  • By polluting the earth to prepare for war, the Pentagon prepares a world in which war becomes more likely.
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#7: The colossal problem with universal basic income | Top 10 2019

Continuing the countdown, Big Think's seventh most popular video of 2019 explains why universal basic income will hurt the 99%, and make the 1% even richer.

  • Big Think's #7 most popular video of 2019 features Douglas Rushkoff, who says universal basic income is a band-aid solution that will not solve wealth inequality.
  • Funneling money to the 99% perpetuates their roles as consumers, pumping money straight back up to the 1% at the top of the pyramid.
  • Rushkoff suggests universal basic assets instead, so that the people at the bottom of the pyramid can own some means of production and participate in the profits of mega-rich companies.
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Supreme Court signals homeless people have a constitutional right to sleep in public spaces

It's a victory for homeless advocates on the West Coast, who say criminalizing homelessness is cruel and ineffective.

Image source: Portland Press Herald
  • The Supreme Court let stand a ruling from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, which deemed homeless anti-camping laws unconstitutional.
  • Opponents of the ruling argue that local governments need more power to manage homeless populations, which are growing, especially on the West Coast.
  • Homeless advocates argue that criminalizing homelessness does not solve the root issue.
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Greta Thunberg, climate change activist, wins Time Person of the Year

Going from a solitary teenage protester in front of the Swedish parliament to a global icon in little more than a year certainly merits a distinction.

Photo credit: MICHAEL CAMPANELLA / Getty Images
  • Greta Thunberg, the 16-year-old Swedish climate change activist, has been named Time's Person of the Year.
  • The award is given to "the person or persons who most affected the news and our lives, for good or ill, and embodied what was important about the year, for better or for worse."
  • Considering the magnitude of directly inspired protest movements and real-world impacts she has had, the award seems to be merited, although not everybody is pleased about this.
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