The Ethics of Environmentalism

By: John A. Lanier

If you wish everyone would compost their food waste to help mitigate climate change, then you should compost. If you wish everyone would refuse plastic straws to help keep them out of the oceans, then you should refuse plastic straws.

I just binged the heck out of The Good Place (thanks for the recommendation Whitney!). It’s an NBC comedy starring Kristen Bell, with the plot centered on four humans who have died and are now experiencing the afterlife. As the name implies, there is a “good place” and a “bad place,” roughly heaven and hell by common understanding, but without any adherence to a particular faith tradition. Much of the comedy is situational, but there is a detailed (if winding) plot with solid character development. I enjoyed it for multiple reasons, and the finale even twanged a few of my heart strings.

For my purposes here though, I want to touch on the constant refrain of ethics and moral philosophy throughout the show. Much like The Big Bang Theory takes highly complex scientific principles and bakes them into 22 minutes of showtime, The Good Place does the same with highly complex ethical theory. For instance, the show explores concepts like the ethics of lying and moral relativism. Such topics are highly appealing to your friendly neighborhood nerd on this side of the keyboard!

One of the four main characters in the show is Chidi Anagonye, an ethics professor during his life on earth. He is passionately dedicated to doing what is right, but his fatal flaw is his analytical paralysis that shows up any time it isn’t clear what “right” is. In short, the dude struggles with decision-making. Much of this personality trait stems from his strict adherence to the teachings of one particular philosopher – Immanuel Kant.

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Who's Your Favorite Chemist?

By: John A. Lanier

Where we often use toxic substances in our chemistry, the natural world’s chemistry is overwhelmingly benign. Where we use heat and strong forces to create chemical bonds, nature self-assembles at ambient temperatures. Where many human chemical feedstocks rely on global mining supply chains, nature has figured out how to use whatever it has right where it is.

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Corporations Can Accelerate Climate Solutions

Guest Blog by Roy Richards

Recent history tells us that achieving sustainability requires audacious goals, stair-step improvement, and collaboration with others to drive lasting change. This applies to the Drawdown Georgia goal to reduce carbon emissions by one third by 2030 as well. Share owners of private and public companies should make sure to use our investment dollars to help ensure these much-needed and highly vetted climate solutions can scale to meet Georgia’s goals.

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Cultural Roots

By: John A. Lanier

When you eat a cultural food, you are experiencing both a people and a place, and I’m drawn to the environmental aspect of cuisine. That doesn’t mean music lacks an environmental connection though!

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OK Doomer

By: John A. Lanier

There is simply too much work to be done to solve the climate crisis, and that work can become unbearable without a positive vision to work toward. Fortunately, fiction can also help us more fully imagine that positive vision.

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Poetry for the Planet

By: John A. Lanier

Together we do this and more / Not because it’s very easy or nice / But because it is necessary, / Because with every dawn we carry / the weight of the fate of this celestial body orbiting a star.

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A Forgotten Relationship

By: John A. Lanier

I often hear the call for corporations to adopt long-term thinking, and it’s a call in which I join. But we also need everyday people, you and me, to think the same way.

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Guest Blog - Building Community Power: Sharing Solar and Energy Solutions for Georgia

By: Michelle Moore

What is community solar, and why is it one of Drawdown Georgia’s 20 solutions? We asked CEO of Groundswell, Georgia-born/DC-based Michelle Moore, to break it down for us.

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Guest Blog - Celebrating the Seasons with Chef Matthew Raiford

Reprinted from Drawdown Georgia

A James Beard semifinalist for Best Chef: Southeast 2018, Chef Raiford is also a certified ecological horticulturalist--and an early supporter of Drawdown Georgia. As part of Drawdown Georgia launch week, Raiford was the keynote speaker at the Food and Agriculture-themed virtual Civic Dinner.

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Eggshells

By: John A. Lanier

Looking ahead, I choose to do so with hope and a commitment to action. As a species living on Spaceship Earth, we desperately need both, and I firmly believe they will be the keys to redeeming this past year.

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