The New Yorker:

When Dan Reicher was eight, he became fixated on wolverines. He admired their ferocity but, because they were endangered, feared for their survival. While poring over a catalogue of outdoor gear, he came across a parka trimmed in wolverine fur. He was outraged. His mother, a schoolteacher, and his father, an ob-gyn, urged him to put his umbrage to good purpose, so he sent the gear company a letter. After some time, he received a reply: the company was discontinuing the parka. Had his protest made the difference? Probably not, but, still, he inferred that a citizen, even a little one, had the power to effect change. “Boy, was I misled,” he said recently.

Reicher, now sixty-one, is a professor at Stanford and the executive director of its Steyer-Taylor Center for Energy Policy and Finance. Previously, he led Google’s climate and energy initiatives and served in the Clinton Administration as an Assistant Secretary of Energy. He has spent most of his adult life trying to help humankind move past its reliance on fossil fuels. Under President Trump, conservationists have seen decades of gains rolled back in a matter of months. Still, Reicher, like so many environmentalists, goes grimly about his business.

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