Science and solutions

I’m a Ph.D. student studying physics at the University of Colorado, Boulder. The scientific community provides an interesting vantage point from which to watch the politics around climate change — ever in the news lately — play out. Pretty much everyone agrees about the existential nature of the problem, but it’s often hard for practically minded scientists who want to see their way to tangible benchmarks of achievement to feel empowered to act on this issue. We would like it to be a scientific problem, but it’s not. It’s really a political problem at this point.

So over the past few years, about a dozen of us — mostly physicists — have joined the Citizens’ Climate Lobby. They’re about as close as you can get to having a scientific mindset on how to solve the hard problem here — the politics. Many of us have gone to Washington, D.C., to lobby for effective national climate action. I find that climate change is a stress-inducing topic and, as ever, the best way to address the stress is to work toward eliminating its cause.

Daniel Palken