Roberta Laurie

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Earlier this month, I gave a presentation at the Climate Change: Views from the Humanities Conference. It was hosted by the University of California Santa Barbara, and it was billed as a “Nearly Carbon-Free Conference” because it took place entirely online. As explained on the conference’s home page, “had this been a traditional fly-in conference, our slate of speakers would have had to collectively travel over 300,000 miles, generating the equivalent of over 100,000… Read More

I recall the feeling of crippling responsibility, the sense of vulnerability, the revelation that I was responsible for a tiny life. Until I became pregnant and began to feel the awareness of the life growing within my belly, I could not have known the sudden susceptibility to a host of fears and worries that would weigh upon me. I recall all of that: the concern, the love, the distress. These are the… Read More

Originally posted on Beating the Bounds:
I was in a park I could not see Global capitalism Its dinosaur bones Covered in chrome I saw     trees Their leaves Turning yellow and Golden brown I saw the harbour And the city set Down below The mountain A place you’d descend To or ascend from I asked someone How do we resist? Consider the trees Bending in the wind Their root grip Deep in…

In the hours leading up to the Greenpeace action, I knew that some of my closest friends would be going into harms way — where they could be injured or arrested. I knew they were going into a situation where their future prospects could be compromised. Granted, it was a low risk action: they weren’t delivering their message from an industry site, nor were they singling out a political figure. They were… Read More

UN Climate Summit 2014 is scheduled to start tomorrow in New York City. The Summit is intended as “a public platform for leaders at the highest level – all UN Member States, as well as finance, business, civil society and local leaders from public and private sectors – to catalyze ambitious action on the ground to reduce emissions and strengthen climate resilience and mobilize political will for an ambitious global agreement by… Read More

For their paper, “Beyond individual behaviour change: the role of power, knowledge and strategy in tackling climate change,” Kenis and Mathijs interviewed twelve “young environmentally concerned citizens” in an attempt to learn the knowledge, motivation and frustrations that informed their strategies for addressing climate change. I was intrigued by their findings. Many respondents expressed a sense of powerlessness. They felt that individual action seemed negligible when compared to the magnitude of the… Read More