Wicked Problems
Wicked Problems - Climate Tech Conversations (Subscriber Feed)
Climate Geopolitics' Favourite Serial Killer

Climate Geopolitics' Favourite Serial Killer

Dr. Anatol Lieven gives and asks no quarter

Anyone aspiring to write a book can only hope for a review remotely as good as that for Dr. Anatol Lieven’s Climate Change and the Nation State by Aris Roussinos in UnHerd:

Aiming to not just shift the Overton Window of green politics, Lieven smashes it, then demolishes the wall containing it, kicking the rubble and broken glass in all directions with wild abandon. Greens, liberals and conservatives all become targets of his ire in succession, as he argues that all must be forced to abandon their most cherished political beliefs in the face of the coming catastrophe.

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In this episode of Wicked Problems - Climate Tech Conversations, we delve into the intersecting crises of climate change, internal disintegration, and global security. With a stellar career as a journalist, scholar, and author, Dr. Lieven brings a wealth of expertise to discuss the mounting challenges facing democracies worldwide.

Key Topics Discussed:

  • Security Establishments and Climate Change:
    Dr. Lieven argues that inherited institutional priorities have led security establishments to focus on external threats, while the real challenges lie in internal disintegration driven by climate change, migration, and socioeconomic inequality.

  • Green New Deal and Nationalism:
    A compelling advocate for a Green New Deal, but on “realist” grounds, Dr. Lieven emphasizes the importance of compensating those most affected by climate policies while ensuring that the rich bear their share of the burden. He suggests that patriotism should be harnessed to mobilize public support.

  • U.S. Political Crisis and Constitutional Flaws:
    Lieven critiques the U.S. Constitution as "not fit for purpose" and explores the potential for a severe political crisis in the event of a contested 2024 election. He underscores the danger of both sides refusing to back down.

  • Global Shocks and the Importance of Resilience:
    The need to build resilience against global shocks is paramount, argues Lieven. He discusses how competition with China can help, but warns that "just-in-time" supply chains are profoundly dangerous.

  • Migration and Internal Stability:
    Migration remains a crucial issue affecting Western democracies, and Dr. Lieven describes how differing ideas about national identity can lead to severe polarization. He likens it to the challenges facing Middle Eastern democracies.

Dr. Lieven’s Catalysts

  • The Uninhabitable Earth by David Wallace-Wells

  • The Economics of Climate Change: The Stern Review by Nicholas Stern

  • Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed by Jared Diamond

About the Guest: Dr. Anatol Lieven is the Director of the Eurasia Program at the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft. He has had a distinguished career as a journalist covering the former Soviet Union and Pakistan and has held academic positions at King's College London and Georgetown University in Qatar. He is the author of Climate Change and the Nation State.

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Wicked Problems
Wicked Problems - Climate Tech Conversations (Subscriber Feed)
A show about climate tech - the intersection of people, politics, technology, and capital that will help shape the future. And whether you'd want to live in it.