Bill McKibben, author of the new book Falter: Has the Human Game Begun to Play Itself Out?, wants you to panic about climate change. He compares how people often talk about the health of the planet — as a vague, far-off risk — with what inspires people to actually take action in their own lives. “Imagine going to a doctor who says, ‘If you keep eating like this, someday your cholesterol will be too high.’ If you’re like most people,” he says, “you don’t change a thing. Bring on the cheese. But if the doctor says, ‘Your cholesterol is already in the zone where people have heart attacks — in fact, it looks like you may have had a mild stroke already’ — Well, that’s when you say, ‘What pill do I take?’”
McKibben says that the planet is already in that zone today — contending that, because we don’t worry enough about climate change, we don’t move to fix what’s wrong at the speed our planet requires. Watch his full argument in the video above.