I just watched a couple of spots in Conservation International’s new television campaign and I’m impressed. The spots I viewed—featuring Julia Roberts as the voice of Mother Nature, and Harrison Ford as the voice of Earth’s oceans—are powerful and poignant. The spots capture the malaise many people are feeling about the environment these days. There’s a sense that the Earth is burning (literally, in some cases) and that the people in power—the government and corporate leaders who could actually effect global change—are fiddling. Doing nothing. Defending the status quo.

Why are they doing nothing? Why are so many politicians afraid to even utter the words “climate change”? I believe it’s one of those “follow the money” situations. Big oil, big coal, big mining—big corporations in general—are making so much money they have no interest in changing course. It’s profits first, planet last.

The other issue—especially in the U.S.—is that corporate-controlled media has made it impossible to carry on civil debate or discussion. Talk show hosts mock and marginalize scientists who try to illuminate threats to the planet. “Experts” at corporate-funded think tanks work ceaselessly to cast doubt on climate issues. To make people feel like there’s no reason to act. Politicians that do push for green energy solutions are marginalized. Attacked for being anti-job and anti-growth.

As a father, a citizen, a lifelong backpacker, skier, and kayaker, I feel passionately about environmental issues and am deeply concerned about the fate of our planet. I fear that our kids and grandkids will inherit a vastly diminished, compromised world. I’m hopeful we’ll come to our senses in time, but my optimism is fading.

I feel called to write about these issues, to construct stories that personalize our environmental challenges. That present the dilemmas we face in new ways. My first three books: THE GAIA WARS, BATTLE FOR CASCADIA, and EXODUS 2022 all are tales of Earthly conflict, hope and discovery. Thanks for reading and please share your thoughts.

View more videos from Conservation International.

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