Greenpeace grabs more headlines — but to what end?

I spent a bit of time this morning watching live video of Greenpeace’s latest tar sands stunt — this time at Shell’s Albian Sands mine where activists spread a big banner on the ground ("Tar Sands: Climate Crime") chained themselves to stuff and talked about the importance of stopping the tar sands. Predictable Greenpeace fare in other words.

Lots of folks will be impressed by this stunt. I’m less impressed — especially after reading the cover story of the latest Walrus magazine a scathing critique of the modern environmental movement by Calgary writer Chris Turner. If anyone cares about climate change and sustainability it’s him and yet he sees Greenpeace-style environmentalism as a failure. Proof? Despite the anti-industrial efforts of environmentalists "the earth’s natural wonders have never been closer to collapse" he writes.

Turner offers an alternative to all the protesting and chaining and blockading — but you’re gonna have to read the story to find out what it is.

There’s no question that Greenpeace is good at grabbing headlines. They succeeded at it again this morning. But is that enough? Is it ultimately helpful? Chris’s story will likely get you thinking about these things a little differently. The Walrus even has this nifty little trailer as a foretaste:

Coming soon: video trailers for Fast Forward cover stories! (Okay not really…)