Be Inspired: Quotes

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picture pillar“The laws of Congress and the laws of physics have grown increasingly divergent, and the laws of physics are not likely to yield.”
—Bill McKibben

“If you think mitigated climate change is expensive, try unmitigated climate change.”
—Dr. Richard Gammon, University of Washington, on the steps of the US Congress, June 28, 1999.

The atmosphere is the key symbol of global interdependence.”
—Margaret Mead

“We’re doing great, thank God. The American economy is flourishing. We’re using more fossil fuels. We’re putting more CO2 in the air. The coal plants are running at record levels. Business has never been better. We’re doing great!”
—Fred Palmer, Western Fuels Association

“In the year 2065, on current trends, damage from climate change will exceed global GDP.”
—Andrew Dlugolecki, General Insurance Development

“A package of 35 improvements to typical industrial motor systems can save around 50% of their metered energy…with a simple payback under 16 months.”
—Amory Lovins

“State and local governments [in the US] have 10 billion square feet of public space and spend $16 billion annually on energy — equal to the gross domestic product of Costa Rica. The energy used in these public spaces is responsible for 134 million tons of carbon emissions, but 30% of that energy is wasted because of inefficiency. Your efforts will make or break our nation’s efforts to address climate change. Your efforts are where the rubber hits the road.”
—Jerry Clifford, EPA

“I’d put my money on the sun and solar energy. What a source of power! I hope we don’t have to wait ’til oil and coal run out before we tackle that.”
—Thomas Edison (1847–1931)

“Studies have shown that schools incorporating passive solar features, such as daylighting, use less energy, student grades have improved, and attendance is higher.”
—EnergySmart Schools

“By spending just $30 per year on wind power, an average Colorado family can cut its household carbon dioxide production by about 10%.”
—Colorado Wind Power

“Air travel has an unfair advantage over other transport modes such as the car, bus, and train because airlines don’t pay tax on aviation fuel. The absence of a fuel tax or an emissions-based levy allows airlines to charge artificially low ticket prices as the cost of pollution is passed on to society, and not the passenger.”
—Friends of the Earth, London, May 2000

“If all of us were renting the Earth, we’d have lost our deposit. At Toyota, we’re trying to help restore the planet to the way it was before everyone moved in.”
—Toyota Motor Corporation

“There is no endeavor more noble than the attempt to achieve a collective dream. When a city accepts as a mandate its quality of life, when it respects the people who live in it, when it respects the environment, when it prepares for future generations, the people share the responsibility for that mandate. This shared cause is the only way to achieve that collective dream.”
—Jaime Lerner, past Mayor of Curitiba

“Why is our (US) government the only one in the civilized world with a stupid, short-term energy policy? Why do our elected officials consider a European or Japanese-type energy tax not only unpassable but undiscussable?”
—Donella Meadows

“Listen up, you couch potatoes: each recycled beer can saves enough electricity to run a television for three hours.”
—Denis Hayes, International Chair of Earth Day

“We used to be hunter-gatherers, now we’re shopper-borrowers.”
—Robin Williams, 1990

“If we do not change our direction, we are likely to end up where we are headed.”
—Chinese Proverb

“Jesus was an active person. Praying about clean water and air is fine. But taking action to make sure that the air and water are clean, that’s where we put our faith into action.”
—Reverand Sally Bingham, Grace Cathedral, San Francisco

“Our task must be to widen our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.”
—Albert Einstein (1879–1955)

“There is something fundamentally wrong with treating the earth as if it were a business in liquidation.”
—Herman Daly

“There are no passengers on spaceship earth. We are all crew.”
—Marshall McLuhan

“The wilderness holds answers to questions man has not yet learned to ask.”
—Nancy Newhall, 1971

“Glance at the sun. See the moon and the stars. Gaze at the beauty of the Earth’s greenings. Now, think.”
—Hildegard von Bingen (1098–1179)

“If the world is to be healed through human efforts, I am convinced it will be by ordinary people, people whose love for this life is even greater than their fear. People who can open to the web of life that called us into being.”
—Joanna Macy

“Never be discouraged from being an activist because people tell you that you’ll not succeed. You have already succeeded if you’re out there representing truth or justice or compassion or fairness or love.”
—Doris Haddock (Granny D), who walked across America at the age of 89, to highlight the need for campaign finance reform.

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, concerned citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”
—Margaret Mead

“If you think the efforts of one individual will be nothing, then you have never been to bed with a mosquito.”
—Betty Reese

“Whenever I see an adult on a bicycle, I no longer despair for the future of the human race.”
—H.G. Wells

“Everything in life is somewhere else, and you get there in a car.”
—E.B. White

“…everything is gift. The degree to which we are awake to this truth is the measure of our gratefulness. And gratefulness is the measure of our aliveness…”
—David Steindl-Rast