Diamond in the Rubble

Diamond in the Rubble:The Political Reshuffling
in the U.S. Could Help the Environment

In this time of mourning and fear, Americans are reconsidering
what parts of our national agenda are truly important to us. In
Grist Magazine, environmental writer Keith Schneider
interviews environmental activists, writers, and leaders, and finds
a mood of cautious optimism. Many believe that this time of
introspection may bring unique opportunities for the progressive
political community.

Ben Beach of Wilderness Society believes that ‘there’s a good
chance that we’ll see a new national resolve to use energy more
efficiently and develop sources that are not vulnerable to mad acts
of terrorists.’ James Kunstler, noted lecturer and author, hopes
that people will now be compelled to live more locally. Unique
coalitions are also forming to invest in improving the nation’s
transportation systems and relieving congestion.

Progressive leaders speculate that the will to build a more just
and environmentally safe future may have even been strengthened
since the attacks. Author Bill McKibben points out that the United
States, having called on other nations for support, can no longer
ignore invitations to participate with their allies in
international environmental treaties.

Many would agree with Bob Schaeffer that ‘the terror attacks have
been a grim reminder of the importance of the public sector in
preserving the services the nation most values.’ Still, it is now
more important than ever that environmental and progressive groups
keep their focus and push their agendas even harder.
–Lila Kitaeff
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