'Optimistic Environmentalist' David Boyd says hope is key to action

Environmental lawyer David Boyd whose legal battles once left him with little hope for the planet's future has had a conversion... and now he's preaching hope for the earth with his message of "environmental optimism". But Ronald Wright warns too much optimism can lead people to slack off.
Is environmental optimism an oxymoron? (pavel ahmed, Flickr cc)
Listen24:03

When it comes to news about climate change and the environment, it has to be said that the vast majority of what you hear tends to be full of doom and gloom...our own show included.

In fact, it seems the more attention one pays to the state of the planet, the more hand-wringing and pessimism would be the only suitable reaction.

But David Boyd is here to say that the position of "environmental optimism" is not the oxymoron it may appear to be.

David Boyd is an environmental lawyer.  And he's making the case for hope -- something he says he struggled to find in his darkest days of fighting environmental issues in the courts. He's published a book titled, "The Optimistic Environmentalist."


While Ronald Wright may agree with some of David Boyd's points, he believes hope may just lead us into a progress trap. 

Ronald Wright is the author of  "A Short History of Progress." His upcoming book "The Gold Eaters" is due out next month. 
 

Are you an optimistic environmentalist?  Do you believe hope is a better motivator than fear?

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This segment was produced by The Current's Leif Zapf-Gilje.