The Politics of America's Fight against Global Warming

The world's climate is warming quickly. Reformers recently tried, but failed, to persuade Congress to enact "cap and trade" to reduce carbon emissions. What's next to move America toward a green economy? 

Advocates and scholars looked back and forward at a symposium held at Harvard University on February 14, 2013, co-sponsored by the Scholars Strategy Network and the Columbia School of Journalism. 

> Click here to see a report about the February 14 symposium published shortly afterwards by Harvard Magazine.

> Watch a video of the event.


Background for the Harvard symposium comes from two newly released reports commissioned by the Rockefeller Family Fund in consultation with the Dean of the Columbia School of Journalism. Each report is available in PDF format by clicking on the title.

> Theda Skocpol, "Naming the Problem: What It Will Take to Counter Extremism and Engage Americans in the Fight Against Global Warming."

> Petra Bartosiewicz and Marissa Miley, "The Too Polite Revolution: Why the Recent Campaign to Pass Comprehensive Climate Legislation in the United States Failed."

> Contributing to the same discussion, SSN member Nate Loewentheil has a new brief on "The Past and Future of U.S. Environmental Reforms," based on his recently issued report "Of Stasis and Movement: Climate Legislation in the 111th Congress."

All three reports have been discussed and debated at the Grist website – in several posts by editor David Roberts, and in additional posts by Bill McKibben, Philip Bump, Joseph Romm, Eric Pooley, Mike Tidwell, and Nate Loewentheil.

Brad Plumer of the Washington Post's Wonkblog published an interview with Theda Skocpol; and Guardian reporter Suzanne Goldberg has done both an article and an interview about the Skocpol report.

After the presidential inauguration, Theda Skocpol published an article at Foreign Policy on what environmentalists should try to accomplish during Obama's second term.

Petra Bartosiewicz and Marissa Miley discuss their report at Huffington Post in a recent article on why "The Time for a Polite Green Revolution Has Passed."


Click on the brief titles to see important research by SSN scholars.

On Climate Change Denial and Conservative Opposition to Environmentalism

> Robert J. Brulle, "The Hidden Campaign to Spread Doubt About Climate Science."

> Riley E. Dunlap and Aaron M. McCright, "The Climate Change Denial Campaign."

> Judith A. Layzer, "How Conservatives Have Undermined U.S. Environmental Policy."

On the Dynamics of Public Opinion

> Robert J. Brulle and J. Craig Jenkins, "Partisan Battles and Shifting Public Opinion on Climate Change."

> Frederick W. Mayer, "Competing Media Stories and U.S. Public Opinion on Climate Change."

> Aaron M. McCright and Riley E. Dunlap, "The Polarization of U.S. Public Opinion on Climate Change."

On Building Support and Alliances

> Michael W. Howard, "Cap Carbon Emissions and Pay Dividends to Citizens – A Strategy to United Americans against Global Warming."

> Erik Loomis, "Can Workers and Environmentalists Learn to Cooperate?"

> Bill McKibben with Chloe Maxmin, "The Promise of the 'Fossil Free' Movement to Demand Divestment from Carbon Energy Corporations."

On Energy Subsidies and regulations

> David Blatt, "The Case for Curbing Oklahoma's Oil and Gas Tax Breaks."

> Eban Goodstein, "Why are Republicans Trying to Kill America's Wind and Solar Power Industries?"

> Don Grant, Wesley Longhofer, and Andrew K. Jorgenson, "Targeting Extreme Polluters to Reduce Carbon Emissions from the Electricity Sector." 



4:15-6:15 pm, Thursday, February 14, 2013
Tsai Auditorium, Harvard University
CGIS South Building, 1730 Cambridge Street, Cambridge, Massachusetts
Sponsored by the Columbia School of Journalism and the Scholars Strategy Network
NICHOLAS LEMANN -- Dean of the Columbia School of Journalism
THEDA SKOCPOL -- Victor S. Thomas Professor of Government and Sociology, Harvard University; Director of the Scholars Strategy Network
LARRY SCHWEIGER -- President and CEO of the National Wildlife Federation
GENE KARPINSKI -- President of the League of Conservation Voters
MARY ANNE HITT -- Director of the Sierra Club Beyond Coal Campaign
LEE WASSERMAN -- Director of the Rockefeller Family Fund