Of all the issues that face our world—resource scarcity, population growth, inter-state conflict—climate change is quickly emerging as perhaps the most critical one to deal with. Its effects are already being felt in the United States and abroad, and a lack of serious action promises catastrophic results. National governments have taken steps to try and limit carbon pollution, but these steps have the potential to produce more harm than good if not implemented properly. A collection of corporations have also committed themselves to sustainability, although not yet enough to constitute a full-fledged movement.
What the fight against climate change needs is a true social revolution, in which everyone has the capacity to make choices about their energy consumption. At The Atlantic's roundtable dinner, participants discussed the possibility of corporations galvanizing a bottom-up movement against climate change though their unique contact with consumers. Those at the table agreed that there is vast potential for the private sector to assume a leadership role in this critical arena, along with a strong belief from many that some degree of public policy was necessary to serve as a guiding light for corporations and citizens alike.