In a year-end essay in The Guardian, bestselling author Rebecca Solnit describes 2014 as Year One of the climate revolution, comparing the apparent inevitability of a fossil fuel economy with the era when “the divine right of kings was an inescapable reality” in pre-revolutionary France.
“Americans are skilled at that combination of complacency and despair that assumes things cannot change and that we, the people, do not have the power to change them,” she writes.
“Yet you have to be abysmally ignorant of history, as well as of current events, not to see that our country and our world have always been changing, are in the midst of great and terrible changes, and are occasionally changed through the power of the popular will and idealistic movements.”
“It’s hard to see how we’ll get there from here, but easy to see that activists and citizens will have to push their nations hard,” she adds. “We need to end the age of fossil fuels the way the French ended the age of absolute monarchy.”