Bill McKibben, â€œthe planetâ€™s best green journalist,â€ according to Time magazine and author of a dozen books about the environment, will speak on fossil fuels and climate change in August in Oak Ridge.
The lecture will be at 7 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 18, at the Oak Ridge High School Performing Arts Center.
McKibben is a founder of the grassroots climate campaign 350.org, which has coordinated 15,000 rallies in 190 countries since 2009 and sponsored a 21-city â€œDo The Mathâ€ tour last fall. The â€œDo The Mathâ€ movie has been shown in numerous cities this past spring and several times at First Presbyterian Church of Oak Ridge, including by a new Secret City Sustainability group of college students. The movie is available online at 350.org.
The 350 in the website name refers to the 350 parts per million of atmospheric carbon dioxide that is deemed a safe level because it would not likely lead to catastrophic climate change. Just this year, levels as high as 400 ppm were measured.
McKibben’s Aug. 18 lecture is sponsored by First Presbyterian Church. It will be a special Jackson B. Davidson Memorial Lecture on Science and Religion. Jack Davidson was an elder and member of the church.
Additional information on the lecture and other events during the day will be provided through the churchâ€™s website at www.fpcor.orgÂ and Facebook page.
McKibbenâ€™s lecture will cap off a full day of activities around creation care. Earlier that morning, at 11 a.m., First Presbyterian and three other places of worship in Oak Ridgeâ€”First Christian, High Places Community, and Unitarian Universalist churchesâ€”will gather for an ecumenical service in the historic Grove Theater at 123 Randolph Road.
And First Presbyterian Church will host a community-wide, 100-mile potluck meal starting at 1 p.m. that day on its soccer field off Lafayette Drive. The churchâ€™s address is 1051 Oak Ridge Turnpike.
â€œAt least one ingredient in each dish must have been grown within 100 miles of Oak Ridge,â€ said the Rev. Sharon Youngs, pastor of First Presbyterian. â€œThis event will emphasize the importance of eating healthy, locally produced food, while reducing the need to burn fossil fuel for transportation of foods produced hundreds to thousands of miles away.â€
McKibbenâ€™s latest book is “Eaarthâ€ (the extra â€œaâ€ stands for â€œalteredâ€), and his first book, â€œThe End of Nature,â€ is regarded as the first book for a general audience on climate change.
â€œEaarthâ€ was selected as the 2013 â€œLife of the Mindâ€ book to be read by all incoming freshmen at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville. McKibben will speak to the freshmen at UTK on Monday, Aug. 19.
His other books include â€œThe Comforting Whirlwind: God, Job, and the Scale of Creation,â€ â€œDeep Economy: the Wealth of Communities and the Durable Future,â€ and â€œFight Global Warming Now.â€
McKibben was a staff writer for The New Yorker magazine and is a frequent contributor to The New York Times, The Atlantic, Mother Jones, and Rolling Stone magazines.