Moving Mountains Symposium (Morning Session)

Date: May 24, 2013
Start Time: 9:00 a.m.

How can we the people fight for a livable future?


“Those who are inspired to follow my actions are those who understand that we are on a path toward catastrophic consequences of climate change. They know their future, and the future of their loved ones, is on the line. And they know we are running out of time to turn things around. The people who are committed to fighting for a livable future will not be discouraged or intimidated by anything.”

Tim DeChristopher, activist featured in the documentary Bidder 70

In Person:
  • Tim DeChristopher
  • Why doesn’t our global energy system work, and how can frugal innovation help fix it?


    “For the past two hundred years, we’ve run this other experiment, with fossil fuels, and it’s not working out so well. I want to go back to what worked for two billion years before that.”

    Daniel Nocera, scientist at Harvard whose research focuses on artificial photosynthesis

    In Person:
  • Daniel Nocera
  • What can we learn from Germany?


    “Germany has cracked the code of how a modern industrial economy can kick its dependence on fossil fuels. Right now, 25 percent of its energy comes from renewables and by 2030, that number will be 80. America is at 6 percent.”

    —David Sassoon, founder of Inside Climate News (which won the 2013 Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting)

    Why do we continue to grow food in an unsustainable way that requires so much unnecessary energy and contributes to climate damage?


    “Today, conventional agriculture has tried to control nature and after 100 years of this experiment, we have evidence that it is failing rapidly. I have committed my work to building communities that will last and be harmonious with the planet. We build vast bio-intensive farms that out produce Big Agriculture by a factor of three — and the nutrient value far surpasses anything the big guys can promise.”

    —Grant McCargo, founder of Biological Capital

    In Person:
  • Grant McCargo
  • What are the promises and perils of geoengineering?


    “In the long term, the management of the planet is going to require CO2-removal devices of some sort. There are a lot of people working on it, but it boils down to a simple economic question: Can we capture CO2 at an economical price? Right now, the answer is no. But we’re still at the Wright Brothers stage of exploring this.”

    Jeff Goodell, author of How to Cool the Planet

    In Person:
  • Jeff Goodell
  • What is black carbon, and how can we eliminate 500 million tons of it from the atmosphere?


    “We basically said, ‘How do you use wood as a modern fuel?’ The whole idea is to jettison the fuel supply chain. But the biggest story here is that 2 million people die [from black carbon]. That’s ultimately, in my view, the reason to be doing this.”

    Jonathan Cedar, co-founder of Bio-Lite Stoves

    In Person:
  • Why is stopping climate change a moral imperative?


    “The question isn’t whether we should talk about ethics; the question is whether we can achieve the necessary rapid social change without talking about them. If the culture forces us to live in ways we don’t believe in, then we have to change the culture. Given the urgency of the question, we may need to start with conscientious objection.”

    Kathleen Dean Moore, philosopher and co-editor of Moral Ground: Ethical Action for a Planet in Peril

    In Person:
  • Kathleen Dean Moore
  • Why did divestment work to bring down apartheid, and how will it work as a climate solution?


    “Campuses are suddenly a front line in the climate fight — a place to stand up to a status quo that is wrecking the planet. The campaign to demand divestment from fossil fuel stock emerged from nowhere to become the largest student movement in decades. Already churches and city governments are joining students in the fight. It's where the action is.”

    Bill McKibben, author, activist and co-founder of (via Skype)

    In Person:
  • Bill McKibben