Bill McKibben


Bill McKibben is an author and environmentalist who in 2014 was awarded the Right Livelihood Award, sometimes called the “alternative Nobel Prize.” His 1989 book The End of Nature is regarded as the first book for a general audience about climate change, and has appeared in twenty-four languages; he has gone on to write a dozen more books. He is a founder of, the first planet-wide grassroots climate change movement, and Foreign Policy named him to their inaugural list of the world’s 100 most important global thinkers. The Schumann Distinguished Scholar in Environmental Studies at Middlebury College and a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, he was the 2013 winner of the Gandhi Prize and the Thomas Merton Prize, and holds honorary degrees from eighteen colleges and universities. A former staff writer for the New Yorker, he writes frequently for a wide variety of publications including the New York Review of Books, National Geographic, and Rolling Stone. He lives with his wife in the mountains above Lake Champlain, where he spends as much time as possible outdoors.

Life on the Internet means two opposing realities. One, the bedrock solipsism of the experience. This is for you, and you only. You follow your own series of clicks down your own warren of trails, a path no one else will ever follow exactly. You’ve shaped your own feeds to reflect your own beliefs and persuasions, and hence they now reflect that back at you. Even the TV was a river with relatively few channels—three, in my youth. There was unavoidable sharing and overlap. But the Internet is a delta with endless braided rivulets and streams. You are by yourself. And yet you are also never alone, never unoccupied. The clicking never ceases—


Some of my favorite people on earth are in this book,
Dear writers and grand spirits.

Annie Dillard