Two cultural icons, the President of the United States, Barack Obama, and legendary broadcaster and naturalist, Sir David Attenborough, met last month for a chat at the White House in Washington.
Sir Attenborough, a Cambridge-educated naturalist, is a living treasure. He has been creating and hosting science and nature-related programs since 1954. He had won numerous awards, and he is a vocal, and universally loved and respected, environmentalist.
Sir Attenborough, who turned 89 in May, was invited by Barack Obama to the White House to discuss climate change and other pressing environmental issues.
As one would expect from the meeting of such minds, the exchange between these two men, although brief and to the point, was fascinating. The President turned the encounter into an interview with Sir Attenborough and a brief recording of this fascinating meeting has now been made public by the White House.
During the meeting Sir Attenborough beautifully summed up the future of renewable energy:
I believe [if] we find ways of generating and storing power from renewable resources we will make the problem with oil and coal disappear, because economically, we’ll wish to use these other methods. If we do that, a huge step will be taken in solving the problems of the Earth. I think what’s required is an understanding and a gut feeling that the natural world is part of your inheritance. This is the only planet we’ve got and we’ve got to protect it. And people do feel that, deeply and instinctively, it is after all where you go in moments of celebration and in moments of grief.
Of course not everyone is a fan and, sadly, Sir Attenborough is no stranger to receiving hate mail.
I would imagine given the position of our government on climate change generally, and our Prime Minister on wind turbines specifically, they would be highly unlikely to tune into this fascinating interview.