Achieving a sustainable world; Peter Raven, PhD, Director, Missouri Botanical Garden

Our planet is now home to 6.8 billion people, three times the number here when I was born in the mid-1930s. We all want to consume more and more, but Earth is not large and productive enough to support our desires on an on-going basis. How can we manage our assets ethically in a world where one of five people is starving and many of us cannot express our abilities in any meaningful way?

Born in China, Peter Raven was a professor at Stanford University before moving to St. Louis in 1971 to head the Missouri Botanical Garden). Under his direction, it has become the leading tropical plant research facility in the world, its staff racing to catalog species doomed to extinction. A preeminent scientist and professor at Washington University, Peter Raven is a world-renowned champion of the environment, lecturing around the globe and writing dozens of books and articles.