Schultz on Climate Change: 'We Are Literally on a Collision Course With Time'

Says Americans must take 'personal responsibility' to address global warming

Howard Schultz / Getty Images
January 29, 2019

Former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz issued a dire warning about climate change, saying "we are literally as a world on a collision course with time" and Americans must take "personal responsibility" to address global warming.

Schultz, who recently announced he is considering running for president in 2020 as an independent, appeared on Gwyneth Paltrow's Goop podcast last week.

Aside from discussing his "spirituality" as a secular person and his morning coffee routine, Schultz discussed issues he is most concerned about.

"I'm certainly concerned about the environment and the fact that you don't have to be a scientist to understand that things are changing," Schultz said.

"And we are literally as a world on a collision course with time, and we must address it, we must fix it, we must have personal responsibility," he said.

Schultz shared his $65 million private jet when he was CEO of Starbucks, and a $25 million eight-bedroom, nine-bath vacation home in Hawaii.

Schultz's concerns about global warming echo those of other liberals, like Democratic socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who recently claimed the world is "going to end in 12 years."

Paltrow asked Schultz, "What for you are the most urgent situations at the moment, is it climate change?"

Schultz prefaced his answer by decrying the American political system, saying, "I don't think that most people could answer that question without first saying that our political system and the apparatus of our two parties are creating a situation in which things are just not working and that has to be fixed, domestically."

Paltrow called Schultz a "purpose-driven CEO." Schultz returned the favor, calling the actress and her "modern lifestyle brand" Goop "inspiring" and "inspiring for women."

While decrying President Donald Trump for "divisiveness," Schultz praised his former company for wading into political issues, like instructing baristas to lecture customers about race.

"I worry about how long America can absorb this kind of rhetoric, and lies, divisiveness, and bigotry," Schultz said, without naming the president.

Schultz said Starbucks "never intended to be a politically driven organization, but we took on things that in a sense were political," including divisive issues like guns and race.

Paltrow also asked Schultz about his morning coffee routine. Schultz said he uses a French press only with Sumatran coffee, which is "aged in the tropics for five years before it's roasted."

"The aging produces an earthiness like a Bordeaux wine, that I love," Schultz said.

"Wow," Paltrow said.