A Nobel cause: Q&A with UM climate guru Steve Running

Last spring, University of Montana ecologist and forestry professor Steve Running presented an abbreviated version of his increasingly popular lecture, “The Inconvenient Truth for Montana,” to a room full of environmental journalists.

Near the end of his keynote, Running outlined what he called his “Five Stages of Climate Grief.” Running’s adaptation of Swiss psychiatrist Elisabeth Kübler-Ross’ groundbreaking “Five Stages of Grief” starts with stage one: denial that global warming exists. Denial naturally precedes anger: “I do NOT want to change my lifestyle.” Then stage three bargaining sets in: “Warming won’t be that bad.” Things get bad at stage four, depression: “It’s too late, we’re doomed.” But finally, if all goes well, you might get to the fifth and final stage, acceptance: “Okay, it’s real, now let’s get to work.”

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