The Climate Change Generation Faces Life on a Changed Planet

October, 2016

Press Release—Coming of Age at the End of Nature explores a new kind of environmental writing. This powerful anthology gathers the passionate voices of young writers who have grown up in an environmentally damaged and compromised world. Each contributor has come of age since Bill McKibben foretold the doom of humanity’s ancient relationship with a pristine earth in his prescient 1988 warning of climate change, The End of Nature.

What happens to individuals and societies when their most fundamental cultural, historical, and ecological bonds weaken—or snap? In Coming of Age at the End of Nature, insightful millennials express their anger and love, dreams and fears, and sources of resilience for living and thriving on our shifting planet.

In the foreward for the book, Bill McKibben writes, “What was an abstract fear of climate change in the 1980s is, by the middle 2010s, a crisis so deep it’s possible to argue that we’ve simply waited too long to get started. I don’t quite believe that, which is why I spend my life as one in a great army of activists—a movement ably limned in these pages.”

Twenty-two essays explore wide-ranging themes that are paramount to young generations but that resonate with everyone, including redefining materialism and environmental justice, assessing the risk and promise of technology, and celebrating place anywhere from a wild Atlantic island to the Arizona desert, to Baltimore and Bangkok. The contributors speak with authority on problems facing us all, whether railing against the errors of past generations, reveling in their own adaptability, or insisting on a collective responsibility to do better. Their views, voices and expertise vary but their ultimate goal is the same. 

Taken as a whole, the work of these compelling young writers—some well published and others appearing in print for the first time—creates a space where everyone can listen and demand accelerated action for the future.