Paul Hawken is an environmentalist, entrepreneur, journalist and author. Since the age of 20, he’s dedicated his life to sustainability and changing the relationship between business and the environment. Speaking at the Wheeler Centre with Alexandra de Blas, Hawken discusses his work, his writing and why this era is “not remotely close to capitalism, in a pure sense of the word.”
Hawken explains how the inspiration for his most recent book, Blessed Unrest, came from his experience of the Seattle World Trade Organisation protest in 1999, an action he attended “not as a writer, but just as somebody who wanted to sit down and get arrested.” He discusses the “sunset effect” of climate change denial and describes population growth and our move to cities as “ecological, biological arks” to help us survive the “flood of stupidity we created”.
The American also discusses his fact-finding mission in Greenland — which he says gave him a “profound appreciation for the valour of the scientists” — and talks about the extreme climatic volatility that lies ahead.
Presented in partnership with the Australian Conservation Foundation.
Alexandra de Blas is the principal of de Blas Communications, a business specialising in social and environmental sustainability. She was previously a environment journalist.
Paul Hawken’s Natural Capitalism: Creating the Next Industrial Revolution (Little Brown, September 1999) co-authored with Amory Lovins, has been read and referred to by several heads of state including President Bill Clinton, who called it one of the five most important books in the world today.