Rebeca Solnit’s Letter to a Young Climate Activist
Letter to a Young Climate Activist on the First Day of the New Decade
By Rebecca Solnit
Climate chaos is the worst thing human beings have brought upon themselves and the earth, and we are just beginning to see its impact, in heartbreaking phenomena from melting ice to starving whales to burning forests. If you’re sad, you’re not alone. If you’re scared, you’re not alone. Those of you who are young have every reason to be furious that you were handed a world entering into an era of catastrophe and disruption. You did nothing to make this mess and most of us who are older didn’t do enough to avert it during the last 30 years that we have known we should act, the last 15 when we had the renewable-energy technology to leave the age of fossil fuel behind.
I would never question the rightness of that fury, but I am going to go after despair, hopelessness, and powerlessness. And maybe your fury pointed in the right direction is a treasure: a non-fossil fuel, a clean-burning fire, a passion to do what we need to do. Fury can fight for all that is still with us and all that is worth protecting. And there is so much that is worth protecting. Read Rebecca’s full letter at LitHub.
If you would like to read more of Rebecca Solnit’s work, we recommend her book A Field Guide to Getting Lost.
© Literary Affairs, 2005-2021. All Rights Reserved.