How thinking like a geologist could help us fight climate change

 

“Society as a whole is unable to think on anything like geologic time scales,” says Marcia Bjornerud. “Or even decadal time scales.” It’s clear that we need to think long-term about climate and the environment, but instead political leaders are constrained by the two-year Congressional cycle and those working in business are beholden to quarterly earnings. Bjornerud is a geologist at Lawrence University in Wisconsin and the author of Timefulness: How Thinking Like a Geologist Can Help Save the World. If people understood the history of the Earth, she argues, “we would perceive our world very differently.” The Verge spoke to Bjornerud about geology’s PR problem, the big questions in the field, and what it means to be “timeful.” This interview has been lightly edited for clarity. I think a lot of educated people don’t quite believe in the geologic past. It’s obscure, they haven’t had much background in it and it doesn’t seem real. How thinking like a geologist could help us fight climate change

thumbnail courtesy of theverge.com

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