Our Planet Needs Another “Rachel Carson Moment,” According to Douglas Brinkley
While I was in the process of researching a history of Rachel Carson and the environmental movement of the 1960s and 1970s, I was subjected to a daily barrage of modern news flashes about climate change calamities that were caused by humans.
The United States has warmed by 68 percent more quickly than the rest of the earth as a whole, according to a new report that was released as a draught by the National Climate Assessment this past week. The report cited a wide range of unsettling causes for this disparity.
However, during our midterm elections in 2022, the state of our climate crisis was not raised as a primary worry for voters.
During the decade known as the “Long Sixties,” three presidents, one from each party – John Kennedy, Lyndon Johnson, and Richard Nixon – had the intestinal fortitude to bring environmental concerns to the forefront of the public sphere in the United States.
Rachel Carson was the trigger for this change. In her book “Silent Spring,” published in 1962, Carson made a memorable connection between Theodore Roosevelt-style natural preservation and backyard public health problems.
In a documentary that aired on CBS in 1963 under the title “CBS Reports,” Carson issued a stern warning about the dangers of pesticides such as DDT. She stated that “these sprays, dusts, and aerosols… have the power to kill every insect, the good and the bad; to still the song of birds and the leaping of fish in the streams; and to linger on in soil.”
The publication of “Silent Spring” was a significant factor in the United States government’s decision to outlaw the use of leaded gasoline and DDT.
We are in need of a “Rachel Carson moment” right now, one that will shake people out of their slumber and make them realise that the most pressing issue of our time is climate change.
It is imperative that leaders from both parties collaborate in order to provide inhabitants of the United States with an emergency plan to adapt to climate change.
There is no less than the salvation of Earth as we know it riding on the outcome of this conflict.