Jane Goodall ‘hopeful’ human intelligence will overcome climate crisis

Renowned conservationist Dr Jane Goodall has said she is still hopeful for the future of the planet, saying the intelligence of humans will help overcome the climate crisis.

The 89-year-old said people are finally beginning to use their brains “wisely” to address the issue.

However, she highlighted that change relied on people taking action.

Speaking via a video message at the Frontiers Forum 2023, being held in Switzerland, she said there are four reasons why she is optimistic about the future.

She explained that the first reason is the “energy and commitment” of young people, who are empowered to take action once they understand the problems.

The founder of the Jane Goodall Institute added: “Secondly is the resilience of nature – given the time and perhaps some help, ecosystems destroyed by us can recover.

“Thirdly – and this of great relevance for this event – it is the amazing human intellect.

“This makes us more different from other animals than anything else. So isn’t it bizarre that we should be destroying our only home.

“Finally we are beginning to use our brains wisely.

“Scientists are coming up with innovations that will help us heal some of the harm we’ve inflicted, such as renewable energy, machines that suck CO2 from the atmosphere, regenerative agriculture… and more and more of us are making ethical decisions as to how we live, such as choosing to buy ethically produced products, and moving towards a plant-based diet.”

Speaking to the science conference, Dr Goodall continued: “There is one more reason for hope – the indomitable spirit, which enables us to tackle what seems impossible, and so often to succeed.

“This perhaps is the most important of all.

“Let me make clear that for me, hope is not just wishful thinking, but taking action.

“If we hope to slow down climate change, we must get together, discuss how different groups can tackle different aspects of the underlying causes, then roll up our sleeves and take action.”