The anthropocene era is true enough.  And yet, who we are as a species, or a people, or as families, and even as individuals, is also impacted by the change in our relationship to Earth.  So we have to ask ourselves: Who are we? Who are you? And what will the future require of all of us in this new way of being on the planet?

As human beings, we have a singular capacity to define ourselves in relation to the Anthropocene Age. If we wish to alter the current trajectory of human life on the planet, we must first decide to reconcile with the land beneath our feet, and the waters we swim in, and the sources that nourish our bodies.  To get to health, we have to see the impact of the damage we have inflicted not only upon ourselves, or even upon our children’s children, but also upon the integrity of every living thing that is changed because of us.

Are we able to meet this challenge with the earnest accountabilities and forward-thinking action that it requires of us?  We are the only ones who can answer that question at this moment.

Explore: Authors and Multimedia

Paul Crutzen

Will Steffen

Edward Burtynsky, Jennifer Balchwal, Nick de Pencier

Emma Marris

Stewart Brand

Jennifer Bernstein - On Mother Earth and Earth Mothers – The Breakthrough Institute

Calestous Juma - Leapfrogging Progress - The Breakthrough Institute

Siddhartha Shome - Untapped Potential - The Breakthrough Institute

Erle Ellis - Nature for the People – The Breakthrough Institute

Joanne Chory - How supercharged planets could slow climate change

Romain Lacombe - A personal air-quality tracker that lets you know what you're breathing

Anirudh Sharma - Ink made of air pollution

Greta Thunberg - The disarming case to act right now on climate change

Katharine Hayhoe - The most important thing you can do to fight climate change: talk about it

Chad Frischmann - 100 solutions to reverse global warming

Charles C. Mann - How will we survive when the population hits 10 billion?

Johan Rockstrom - 5 transformational policies for a prosperous and sustainable world

Jennifer Wilcox - A new way to remove CO2 from the atmosphere

Danny Hillis - Should we create a solar shade to cool the earth?

Mike Gil - Could fish social networks help us save coral reefs?

Per Espen Stoknes - How to transform apocalypse fatigue into action on global warming

Tim Kruger - Can we stop climate change by removing CO2 from the air?

Kate Marvel - Can clouds buy us more time to solve climate change?

Kate Stafford - How human noise affects ocean habitats

Emily Parsons-Lord - Art made of the air we breath

Emma Marris - Nature is everywhere - we just need to learn to see it

Lord Nicholas Stern - The state of the climate - and what we might do about it

Mohamed Hijri - A simple solution to the coming phosphorus crisis

Van Jones - The economic injustice of plastic

Thomas Thwaites - How I built a toaster - from scratch

Dianna Cohen - Tough truths about plastic pollution

Eben Bayer - Are mushrooms the new plastic?

John Rockstrom - Let the environment guide our development

Mark Z. Jacobson (w/ Stewart Brand) - Debate: Does the world need nuclear energy?

Cary Fowler - One seed at a time protecting the future of food



1. How does the Anthropocene age challenge the functions of our social, economic, and political systems?
2. How is your family impacted by a changing climate?  What do you see as your future in five years, ten years, twenty years?
3. Sing It Loud  (30 minutes)
In a small group, compose lyrics using the main terms or concepts you’ve learned above, and sing these along to a familiar melody or song.  Share with everyone.