Neil Young on Caring for Planet Earth: ‘I Realize How Hypocritical I Am … I Do All These Things in Jets’

By Michael W. Chapman | March 4, 2011 | 10:58 AM EST

Neil Young (AP Photo)

( – Folk and country rock musician Neil Young said that not taking care of the planet is an issue that angers him but that he realizes he is “hypocritical” and “part of the problem” because he flies a lot in jets to go places and do his work.

In an interview on Q TV, which is part of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, host Jian Ghomeshi asked Young last fall about some political events and whether people seemed angrier over issues than in generations past.

Ghomeshi asked, “Do you feel like we’re angrier now than previous generations were?” and “Why are we so angry?”

Young said, “I don’t know, it depends on who you are, and how you feel about that. I’m angry because we don’t take care of the planet. That makes me upset. You know, I don’t go around beating my head against the wall because we’re not taking care of the planet. But I think about it every day. I wish there was something that I could do.”

“I try to do things that make some kind of example,” he said. “And I realize how hypocritical I am, because I’m part of the problem just like I’m trying to be part of the solution.”

Ghomeshi then asked, “Like how? How are you hypocritical?”

Young said, “Well, I fly around. I do all these things in jets and go everywhere, you know. At the same time, I’m experimenting with biofuels. I’m experimenting with electricity. I’m messing around with turbine engines. You know, trying to find a better way to do things.  Who am I to try to do that? But I don’t care. It’s what I’m doing.”

LincVolt, a modified electric Lincoln Conentinental (AP Photo).

Neil Young, a Canadian singer-songwriter, lives in California and has been performing since 1960. He is known for his support for alternative-fueled vehicles. A 1959 Lincoln Continental that Young was converting to run on batteries and a biodiesel-powered generator, the LincVolt, caught fire and caused an estimated $850,000 in damages at a warehouse in November.

Michael W. Chapman
Michael W. Chapman
Michael W. Chapman