Bookshelf: Hot, Flat, and Crowded: Why We Need a Green Revolution

From the article: Thomas Friedman Calls For A Green Revolution

At the Aspen Ideas Festival Thursday, New York Times columnist and The World Is Flat author Thomas Friedman gave a preview of his new book, Hot, Flat, and Crowded: Why We Need a Green Revolution — and How It Can Renew America, which comes out in September. The book’s main argument is that the convergence of global warming, global flattening (the rise of middle classes all over the world), and global crowding (the population boom) is driving five key trends that will define the 21st century.  

Friedman argues that those five trends — energy and resource supply and demand, petro-dictatorship, biodiversity loss, climate change, and energy poverty — have all been driven past a tipping point such that they have created a new era of history: the energy climate era.

3 videos in the article

  • Part I: Friedman discusses the five trends and presents the book’s main argument
  • Part II: Friedman discusses global weirding and the age of Noah
  • Part III: Friedman discusses solutions and calls for policy reform

Friedman said that because there is no market signal, big companies are “afraid the price [of gas], even when it’s $4.50 a gallon, is gonna go back to two or three dollars and their green investing is all gonna go up in smoke.”

“Without a carbon tax, without a floor on gasoline or oil, you are never gonna have a market,” he continued. “Without a market you will not have scale, without scale all you have is a green hobby.”

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