Am I causing climate change or is Exxon? If it is me, then I should stop flying. If it is Exxon, then I should join #ExxonKnew. In both cases, the immediate euphoria of doing something can easily turn to disillusionment. Even if I and everyone I know live green lives, climate change is still going to happen. What can I do really to get Exxon to change its ways? Anyway, aren’t Exxon and the other carbon majors just giving us the energy that we all want to power our devices and to live well? “You did it” or “I did it”—this is how we are used to thinking about responsibility. This convenient fiction shatters when it confronts climate change. In this talk, I explain why and try to pick up some pieces.
Supported in part by The Willson Center for Humanities, reception to follow.