Green Shift: Gro Harlem Brundtland on Seeing Things As They Are

There are none so blind as will not see.

A colleague in the Sustainability arena shared Gro Harlem Brundtland’s June 18 op-ed piece called “Earth Agonistes.”

Twenty-five years ago, she chaired the 1987 ground-breaking UN Brundtland Commission that created the Our Common Future report and brought Sustainable Development into global conversation.

Today, the op-ed’s title jumped out with its call-back to “Samson Agonistes,” John Milton’s later-life tragic play about the Greek hero who lost his way, his hair, his sight, and ultimately his life.

The word Agonistes means “One Who Struggles” or “Under Struggle.” But for modern readers who may not be familiar with the play, the word Agony serves the purpose.

Earth, in agony.

Unless we change now and start seeing things as they are.

We must choose to see the scientific truths of human-caused climate change and act decisively.


Earth Agonistes

Our central concern is that governments are currently refusing to make the transformative changes needed to resolve the global sustainability crisis.

The scientific evidence is clear that the environmental dangers are rising quickly. Based on current trends, we are likely to move toward a world warmer by 3 degrees, and we may well cross tipping points with potentially catastrophic consequences.

We are the first generation with scientific understanding of the new global risks facing humanity. We must respond decisively, equipped with the best available evidence as a basis for decisions.

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