A rapidly warming climate is driving natural catastrophes. Drought, fire, sea level rise, heatwaves, flooding, and storms threaten the wellbeing of people all around the world. As the dangers unfold, global warming becomes a lived experience, and it feels too late to act.
In his new book, Our Fragile Moment, Michael Mann turns this climate doomism on its head by looking to Earth’s history for inspiration. Humanity’s inception, and some of its greatest innovations, are the result of large-scale environmental change. He writes about how this era of global warming can hold these same opportunities for creative growth – that is, if we act now.
How can the climate crisis be leveraged to propel humanity forward? Why must we act now, in this fragile moment? What is stopping us? Join Michael Mann as he answers these critical questions and discusses the premise of his book with Bloomberg Science journalist Faye Flam.
Michael E. Mann is Distinguished Professor in the Department of Earth and Environmental Science at the University of Pennsylvania, with a secondary appointment in the Annenberg School for Communication. He is director of the Penn Center for Science, Sustainability, and the Media. Mann received his undergraduate degrees in Physics and Applied Math from the University of California at Berkeley, an M.S. degree in Physics from Yale University, and a Ph.D. in Geology & Geophysics from Yale University. His research interests include the study of Earth’s climate system and the science, impacts and policy implications of human-caused climate change.
Mann is author of more than 200 peer-reviewed and edited publications, numerous op-eds and commentaries, and six books including Dire Predictions: Understanding Climate Change, The Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars: Dispatches from the Front Lines, The Madhouse Effect: How Climate Change Denial is Threatening our Planet, Destroying Our Politics, and Driving Us Crazy, The Tantrum that Saved the World, The New Climate War: The Fight to Take Back Our Planet, and Our Fragile Moment: How Lessons from Earth’s Past Can Help Us Survive the Climate Crisis.
Journalist Faye Flam has been from the rocky fringes of Greenland to the mountaintops of Haiti to the South Pole to capture stories about science and the natural world. She earned a degree in geophysics from the California Institute of Technology, where she learned about global warming and the need to explain the threat to the general public. She started her science journalism career as an intern for The Economist before becoming a staff writer for Science Magazine covering particle physics and cosmology. Her desire to reach the wider public brought her to the Philadelphia Inquirer where she covered science and created a weekly column about evolution. She’s currently a columnist for Bloomberg Opinion, where she’s able to add critical evaluation and context to scientific advances. In 2020 she won a Pulliam fellowship from the Society for Professional Journalists, which came with a grant she used to create a podcast called Follow the Science. The weekly episodes examined the pandemic and posed questions about what to believe in a world where so much that’s labelled “science” is either pseudoscientific, fraudulent, distorted by the media or just plain wrong.