Saturday, December 20, 2008


Any concern that the economic crisis would soften the resolve of the Obama administration to deal with the sad state of the environment was swept away today by the choice of Harvard physicist John Holdren to be presidential science advisor, and Oregon State marine biologist Jane Lubchenco to head the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration. Both have battled industry opposition to climate initiatives.

Along with Steve Chu as Secretary of Energy they should form a powerful block of scientists in the Obama administration. It will almost certainly be the most influence science has had in the White House since the Eisenhower administration.

But we don't have much time. Let me tell you what no one else is saying publicly: every step we take to improve the environment will soon be wiped out by population growth. The fact is that we are already beyond a sustainable population. We can't keep talking in terms of reducing the rate of growth.

That's the second derivative. What's New


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