Eco Barons

Eco Barons

Definition of an Eco Baron: An idealistic environmentalist who is devoting their life and fortune to protecting nature preserves and forging a path to achieve their big eco-dreams.

I just finished reading Eco Barons, which was fascinating and thought provoking. The book was also of particular interest to me because I have had the good fortune to meet 3 of the Eco Barons that are profiled in the book: Doug Tompkins, I met at the World Wilderness Congress in Alaska 4 ½ years ago, then Roxanne Quimby, I met at a Green Conference/Festival in San Francisco 2 years ago and just recently, Kieran Suckling, at an event honoring him in Los Angeles. Each of their stories are amazing and inspiring.

I highlighted a few passages from the book that are particularly profound and meaningful to me-

Page 77:”The notion that humans have no inherent, absolute right to exploit and lay waste to nature.”

Page 126: ” The act that revolved around a few simple ideas few found objectionable: Americans cherished nature and did not want animals to become extinct; therefore, it should be illegal to kill endangered species or destroy habitats critical to their survival.”

Page 142:” It means the human experience is becoming increasingly impoverished as plants and animals become extinct, or as our lives become so removed from nature that the experience of those plants and animals becomes extinct.”

Page 297:” Their (the environmentalists) actions are their message: that there is a clear choice, a difficult choice, a right choice, and to make it is to express the faith that it is not too late to save the world-and that a new way of living can be better, healthier, smarter, and more prosperous.”

Page 298:” It took hundreds of millions of years for nature to construct the storehouses of coal, oil, and gas beneath the surface of the earth, the chemical residue left behind by countless extinct prehistoric lifeforms (which is why it is called Fossil Fuel). Oil and natural gas formed from deep pressure and heat exerted on huge layers of dead plankton and algae buried beneath the bottoms of ancient seas, some of which are now the world’s great deserts. Coal is made of the fossil remains of primordial forests buried by time and cataclysm. Every time a gas tank is filled or an electric generator is fired up, the remains of long-extinct creatures are providing the energy.”

Page 299:” Society should take from the earth only the resources that can be renewed, and emit only those substances that can be safely absorbed or purged by nature.” This last one is BRILLIANT!

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