I’ve worked as a scientist in countries like Kenya, Brazil, and Mexico, studying nature’s ecosystems and how they provide our planet with life support free-of-charge. People recounted their struggle to survive as humanity undermines these systems one-by-one – stories that profoundly impacted my thinking. Then in 2009, I was part of the team that developed the world’s first science-based climate target methodology, leading to a movement now 1,000+ companies strong.
Today, I’m fortunate to be able to combine my love of science and storytelling at Netflix, where we aspire to entertain the world. But that requires a habitable world to entertain. And scientists around the world agree we need to stabilize the climate at no more than a 1.5ºC temperature rise to avoid the worst results of climate change – and ensure healthy life support systems for our children.
Although plants are obviously alive, they are rooted to the earth and mute, and they rarely move on a relatable time scale; they seem more like passive aspects of the environment than agents within it. Western culture, in particular, often consigns plants to a liminal space between object and organism. It is precisely this ambiguity that makes the possibility of plant intelligence and society so intriguing — and so contentious.