Living on a Changing Planet
Climate change is scary. Maybe you’re a nature lover grieving the destruction of the places you love by drought, heat, and fire. Maybe you’re a youth activist who’s rightly afraid of what the future holds. Maybe you work for the oil and gas industry and you’re afraid of losing your job and the ability to provide for your family. Or, maybe, like most people, you try not to think or talk about climate change at all, but with increasing frequency you see news stories or experience extreme events that keep you up at night.
If we are going to halt climate change in time to avoid catastrophe, and do that in a just way, we all need to learn to have better, more open conversations about it. We can’t continue going about our daily lives pretending that climate change isn’t happening, or that we’re not scared. Because it is happening, and we are. Until we come to terms with these facts, learn to live with them, and to discuss them openly at work and at home, we will continue to avoid the change we need.
In this podcast, a climate scientist and clinical psychologist team up to do something about this problem.
We sit down with world-leading experts to explore how to manage fear and find meaning and happiness living with the consequences of climate change that cannot now be avoided,
we think about how to have better, more honest conversations about climate change in our daily lives, no matter who we are, what we do, or where on the political spectrum we fall.
No political agenda. No alarmism. Just open, fact-based conversation about what it means to be a human being living on a changing planet.
Who are these world-leading experts we're talking about?
Here's a sample of some of the conversations featured in Season One:
Former Vice President Al Gore
Former Vice President of the United States, Nobel laureate, best-selling author, founding partner and chairman of Generation Investment Management, and founder and chair of the Climate Reality Project. We speak with Al about how he first learned about climate change, how he manages bad days, and what makes him hopeful about the future.
Dr. Myles Allen
Professor of Atmospheric Physics at the University of Oxford. A coordinating lead author for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Special Report on 1.5 Degrees. Credited as one of the scientists who discovered “net-zero” emissions are required to stop warming. We discuss how our guest’s emotional response to climate science has changed, and the way in which some climate anxiety is driven by a misunderstanding the 1.5C target.
Dr. Susan Clayton
Whitmore-Williams Professor of Psychology at the College of Wooster. Member of the APA task force on psychology and global climate change. Landmark contributor to the field of climate and environmental psychology, and IPCC chapter lead for the 6th Assessment Report. We speak with Susan about why she entered the field, the nature of climate anxiety, and the landscape of different options for responding to it.
President and Chief Executive Officer of Occidental Petroleum, one of the worlds largest fossil fuel companies. We speak with Vicki about how she feels about climate change and why, what it is like to work towards climate action within the fossil fuel industry, how lonely a position that can be, and how climate activists can more productively engage with the fossil fuel industry.
Dr. Don Wuebbles
Professor of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Author of multiple IPCC reports, and co-lead for the 4th US National Climate Assessment published under the Trump Administration in 2018. We speak with Don about his emotional journey over almost half a century in atmospheric sciences, about effective climate communication under challenging circumstances, and his hopes for the future.
© Living on a Changing Planet Podcast, 2023
Drawings by Lorenzo Cipollaro @cipo_design
See here for more details on all our Season One guests