How to Save a Planet

By Gimlet

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Subscribers: 940
Reviews: 2


 Feb 5, 2021

Dee Courtney
 Nov 9, 2020
Does what it says in the title! I'm feeling a lot more hopeful since I started listening.

Description

Does climate change freak you out? Want to know what we, collectively, can do about it? Us, too. How to Save a Planet is a podcast that asks the big questions: What do we need to do to solve the climate crisis, and how do we get it done? Join us, journalist Alex Blumberg and scientist and policy nerd Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson, as we scour the earth for solutions, talk to people who are making a difference, ask hard questions, crack dumb jokes and — episode by episode — figure out how to build the future we want.

Episode Date
Presenting: A Matter of Degrees
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Presenting: A Matter of Degrees What happens if your electric utility starts doing things you don’t agree with? What if they start attacking solar and proposing to build more and more fossil gas plants? What if they actively resist clean energy progress? Today we’re sharing an episode of a podcast we love, called “A Matter of Degrees.” Co-hosts Dr. Leah Stokes and Dr. Katherine Wilkinson detail how Arizona Public Service became the Darth Vader of electric utilities — and how public pressure forced APS to come clean. Calls to Action  Get involved with your local public utility commission: Figure out what the heck they're doing and how you can support more climate friendly policies. We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again! get involved with your local public utility commission, figure out what the heck they're doing and how you can support more climate friendly policies. Please check out other episodes from A Matter of Degrees: Co-hosts Dr. Katherine Wilkinson and Dr. Leah Stokes have done a bunch of interesting and compelling reporting. You can find their show on Spotify or wherever you listen to podcasts. 
Mar 04, 2021
Kelp Farming, for the Climate (Part II)
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So, what do you do with 579 pounds of seaweed? In our last episode, we ventured into the ocean to learn how seaweed farming can help solve climate change. In part II, we ask: What do we do with all that kelp? Plus our team does some seaweed R&D of its own and discovers...green scones? Calls to action Check out the New York State Assembly Bill A4213 on seaweed cultivation and for residents of New York, check out the petition. Encourage innovation with kelp: Whether you work in fertilizers, plastics, cosmetics, or any industry, you can encourage your company to do R&D with kelp. Maybe it could serve as a substitute for less climate-friendly ingredients and materials. And if you need a middleman to source from, check out The Crop Project, founded by Casey Emmett whom we interviewed this episode. Consider kelp products: If you are interested in making any kelp flour recipes, do a search for online retailers and don’t forget to share what you make! Send photos, video or audio to howtosaveaplanet@spotify.com Learn more Read Dune Lankard’s amazing piece in the GreenWave newsletter, A Native Perspective on Regenerative Ocean Farming. Also check out Dune’s organization, Native Conservancy. Emily Stengel, Bren Smith’s co-founder and co-executive director of GreenWave, also wrote about regenerative ocean farming in Ayana’s anthology All We Can Save. Go have a read (or listen)! Watch “The Future of Seafood,” a discussion that Ayana moderated with Bren Smith and Sean Barrett of Dock to Dish.
Feb 25, 2021
Kelp Farming, for the Climate
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Seaweed and giant kelp are sometimes called “the sequoias of the sea.” Yet at a time when so many people are talking about climate solutions and reforestation — there aren’t nearly enough people talking about how the ocean can be part of that. In part one of our two-part series, we go out on the water to see how seaweed can play a role in addressing climate change, and how a fisherman named Bren Smith became kelp’s unlikely evangelist. Calls to action:  Check out Bren Smith's book called “Eat Like a Fish” Check out Bren’s nonprofit GreenWave: A simple and direct way to help is to support GreenWave’s work, whose team is building 10 reefs and sponsoring 500 farms in the next five years. Start your own hatchery, farm, or underwater garden: Check out the University of Connecticut and Ocean Approved manuals and GreenWave’s Regenerative Ocean Farming toolkit.  Study ocean agriculture through the Algae Technology Education Consortium (ATEC) at the community college level or through Coursera courses Intro to Algae and Algae Biotechnology. If you take an action we recommend in one of our episodes, do us a favor and tell us about it! We’d love to hear how it went and what it felt like. Record a short voice memo on your phone and send it to us at howtosaveaplanet@spotify.com. We might use it in an upcoming episode.
Feb 18, 2021
Party Like It's 2035
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President Biden has set a goal of reaching 100% clean electricity in the U.S. by 2035. That means cutting all carbon emissions from the entire electricity sector in just 15 years. So... is that even possible? And if so, how do we pull it off? This week, we talk to experts who say that goal just might be in reach – if we act now. Calls to action: Read up on clean electricity standards! It’s the policy approach advocated by some of this week’s guests, including Dr. Leah Stokes, who laid out her vision along with Sam Ricketts of Evergreen Action in a recent Vox article: This popular and proven climate policy should be at the top of Congress’s to-do list: The case for a national clean electricity standard You can find their full report advocating a national clean electricity standard here: A Roadmap to 100% Clean Electricity by 2035  Want to read up on a zero-carbon grid? You can find the studies mentioned in this week’s episode, here: The 2035 Report, from The Goldman School of Public Policy at UC Berkeley, Grid Lab and Energy Innovation  The Net-Zero America Project, from Princeton University And don’t forget to check out A Matter of Degrees, the climate podcast hosted by Dr. Leah Stokes and Dr. Katharine Wilkinson. If you take an action we recommend in one of our episodes, do us a favor and tell us about it! We’d love to hear how it went and what it felt like. Record a short voice memo on your phone and send it to us at howtosaveaplanet@spotify.com. We might use it in an upcoming episode.
Feb 11, 2021
The Tribe that's Moving Earth (and Water) to Solve the Climate Crisis
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The Yurok tribe is reversing centuries of ecological damage to their land and making it more resilient to climate change by marrying two systems that might seem contradictory: indigenous land management practices and modern Western economics. In this episode we talk to Yurok Tribe Vice-Chairman Frankie Myers about how the Tribe recovered stolen land with the help of a carbon offset program, the creative ways they're bringing the salmon back, and the role beavers play in the ecosystem. Calls to Action Check out Save California Salmon and their advocacy work for Northern California’s salmon and fish dependent people. Check out the Klamath River Renewal Corporation to learn more about the dam removals and restoration efforts on the Klamath River. Look up your address on native-land.ca to find out what land you live on, and learn more about how and why you can use land acknowledgements to insert an awareness of Indigenous presence and land rights into everyday life. If you own land you can donate, contact a local tribe to find out how you can donate land to them. Check out and support the work of Indigenous organizations like the NDN Collective and their #landback campaign, the Native American Land Conservancy, Indigenous Environmental Network, and Indigenous Climate Action. Study the history of Indigenous people – read Custer Died for Your Sins, The Indian Reorganization Act, and other books by Vine Deloria, Jr., and read A Brief History of American Indian Military Service. If you take an action we recommend in one of our episodes, do us a favor and tell us about it! We’d love to hear how it went and what it felt like. Record a short voice memo on your phone and send it to us at howtosaveaplanet@spotify.com. We might use it in an upcoming episode.
Feb 04, 2021
Presenting: Timber Wars
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When loggers with chainsaws headed into the Willamette National Forest on Easter Sunday in 1989, they found a line of protesters blocking their way. Some buried themselves in front of bulldozers. Others spent months sitting in trees, among the world’s tallest. The ensuing battle would help catapult old-growth forests into a national issue, and become known as the “Easter Massacre.” Today, we’re sharing an episode of the podcast Timber Wars, which tells the story of how this fight over old-growth trees erupted into a national conflict that influenced environmental policy.  You can find Timber Wars, from Oregon Public Broadcasting, wherever you get your podcasts, or at opb.org/timberwars. Want even more? Don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter! 
Jan 28, 2021
Recycling! Is it BS?
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The recycling bin — many of us have learned to view this humble container as an environmental superhero. It is, after all, the critical first step in turning our trash into… well, not treasure, but at least more stuff. Or is it?  In this episode, we take a look at the science, help you understand whether recycling is an environmental boon or hindrance, and we open up the pandora's box that is plastic. We also dive into what recycling has to do with tackling climate change. Calls to Action Check out the Break Free from Plastic campaign Contact your congress people and ask them to push for the Break Free From Plastic Pollution Act  If there’s a product or a brand that you love, reach out to that company and ask them to change their packaging Check out Loop, a store that ships your favorite products to you in refillable containers that they take back, wash, and reuse Check out Deia Schlossberg’s film, The Story of Plastic If you take an action we recommend in one of our episodes, do us a favor and tell us about it! We’d love to hear how it went and what it felt like. Record a short voice memo on your phone and send it to us at howtosaveaplanet@spotify.com. We might use it in an upcoming episode.
Jan 21, 2021
Meet Your New Climate Czar
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Gina McCarthy will serve as the first-ever National Climate Advisor, heading up the newly formed White House Office of Domestic Climate Policy. So, who is she? We spent time with her before the nomination and talked about her relentless fight to link environmental policy with public health. From her early days inspecting septic systems, to her time leading the Environmental Protection Agency in the Obama administration. Get to know Gina McCarthy. Calls to Action Read up on Joe Biden’s clean energy and environmental justice plans to prepare to push this team to make those promises real If you want to learn the story of how a bunch of outsiders pushed Joe Biden to adopt the most ambitious climate platform in U.S. history, listen to our episode How 2020 Became a Climate Election Learn more about the executive climate actions the Biden-Harris administration is committed to pursuing right off the bat, and what experts suggest they prioritize Check out Gina’s essay, “Public Service for Public Health,” and Maggie’s essay, “The Politics of Policy,” in the climate anthology that Ayana co-edited, All We Can Save: Truth, Courage, and Solutions for the Climate Crisis, at allwecansave.earth If you take an action we recommend in one of our episodes, do us a favor and tell us about it! We’d love to hear how it went and what it felt like. Record a short voice memo on your phone and send it to us at howtosaveaplanet@spotify.com. We might use it in an upcoming episode. How to Save a Planet is a Spotify original podcast and Gimlet production. You can follow us @how2saveaplanet on Twitter and Instagram, and email us at howtosaveaplanet@spotify.com. How to Save a Planet is hosted by Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson and Alex Blumberg. Our reporters and producers are Kendra Pierre-Louis, Rachel Waldholz, Anna Ladd, and Felix Poon. Our senior producer is Lauren Silverman. Our editor is Caitlin Kenney. Sound design and mixing by Peter Leonard with original music by Emma Munger. Our fact checker this episode is Claudia Geib.  
Jan 14, 2021
Soil: The Dirty Climate Solution
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On this week's episode, we meet two farmers who, at first glance, seem very different. One is a first-generation farmer in upstate New York raising fruits and vegetables for the local community. The other is a third generation farmer in Minnesota who sells commodity crops—corn and soybeans—to big industrial processors. But they share something in common. They’re both bucking modern conventions on how to farm. And they're paying close attention to something that is frequently overlooked: the soil. We explore how making simple changes in the way we farm can harness the incredible power of soil to help save the planet. Calls to action The new US Congress will be considering the Farm Bill at some point soon, and there are lots of subsidies in there that could incentivize adoption of regenerative practices and restore and conserve agricultural lands. So keep your eyes peeled for windows of opportunity to push your elected officials to get on board with this. For now, there’s a helpful blog post from the World Resources Institute that will get you up to speed. Also, keep your eyes out for the Justice for Black Farmers Act to be reintroduced in this new Congress, which would support training and access to land for Black farmers. Support farmers of color through the National Black Food and Justice Alliance. Want to learn more about regenerative farming? Check out The Soil Health Institute. Watch these videos from Gabe Brown and Dr. Allen Williams, teachers who helped Grant and Dawn learn about regenerative farming. Read Leah Penniman’s book Farming While Black, which is brimming with great information on her Afro-Indigenous-inspired approach to farming. Watch the new film Kiss the Ground, which is all about how agriculture, and the carbon-sequestering power of soil, is a powerful climate solution.  Ayana’s mom, an organic and regenerative farmer, recommends the book Dirt to Soil by Gabe Brown. Her review: “Excellent job of demonstrating best regenerative farm practices. Great for gardeners and every food consumer to know.” She also recommends checking out the farming magazine called Acres and the array of great books published by Chelsea Green. If you take an action we recommend in one of our episodes, do us a favor and tell us about it! We’d love to hear how it went and what it felt like. Record a short voice memo on your phone and send it to us at howtosaveaplanet@spotify.com. We might use it in an upcoming episode.
Jan 07, 2021
Presenting: Resistance
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How do you take a global movement local? What happens when you refuse to accept things as they are? This week, we’re excited to bring you an episode of a new Gimlet show called Resistance. Resistance is a show full of stories from the front lines of the movement for Black lives, told by the generation fighting for change. Warning: this episode of Resistance has some strong language in it.   Also, what do you think Alex and Ayana’s nicknames should be? Send a note or a voice memo to howtosaveaplanet@spotify.com 
Dec 31, 2020
Presenting: Science Vs
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We know that carbon dioxide is rising and we know that it’s warming the world, but how did scientists figure that out in the first place? And what will all this warming mean for our future? Our friends at the Gimlet podcast, Science Vs., visited a couple climate scientists to find out.  Want even more? Don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter! 
Dec 24, 2020
Answering Your Tree-Mail (and Nuclear) Questions
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We love listener mail! You've sent us some amazing notes. Some made us laugh, some made us cry, and some made us say—hey, that’s a great question! We should answer it. So that’s what we did. This week, we dig into some of your questions about trees. What’s up with that tree-planting search engine? Who were the original tree-huggers? And we top it off with some answers to your questions about our episode on nuclear power. Want more tree content? Listen to our episode 20 Million Trees. Calls to Action Plant a tree! Find the right kind of tree for where you live on the National Wildlife Federation’s Native Plant Finder, and learn how to plant it and take care of it here. If you plant a tree, please hug it and send us a picture. Give Ecosia a try—maybe try a search for Chipko or baseload energy. Check out these organizations that are planting trees in India: SankalpTaru’s Project Protect Himalayas, the Sustainable Green Initiative, and Grow-Trees. If you want to learn more about Chipko, check out these documentaries! On the Fence An excerpt from Sudesha Reviving Faith The Chipko Movement: Haripriya Rangan, Sharachchandra Lele, Sunandita Mehrotra, Sunderlal Bahuguna on the Nagrik Podcast If you take an action we recommend in one of our episodes, do us a favor and tell us about it! We’d love to hear how it went and what it felt like. Record a short voice memo on your phone and send it to us at howtosaveaplanet@spotify.com. We might use it in an upcoming episode.
Dec 17, 2020
Breaking Buildings’ Addiction to Fossil Fuels
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If we’re going to deal with climate change, we’ve got to talk about buildings. Thirty percent of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions can be traced back to our homes, offices and other buildings – how we heat and cool them, how we insulate them (or don’t) and the electricity we use. But greening buildings is really hard. Donnel Baird is on a mission to change that. He founded the startup BlocPower to prove that we can green America’s buildings while creating good jobs in low-income neighborhoods – and he wants to build a billion-dollar business while he’s at it. Calls to action: Interested in whether your building could benefit from going green? Fill out BlocPower’s survey (or give it to your building manager!) to find out if your building is right for a retrofit. You can also learn more about home energy audits, find professional energy auditors in your area or learn how to do one yourself, at the Department of Energy’s resource page. Is policy your love language, too? Local towns and cities have a ton of control over building efficiency and one option is to implement Building Performance Standards that require building owners to cut emissions over time. You can learn more about these policies here. We promised to include links to organizations that are helping folks in need during the pandemic. Check out Feeding America and World Central Kitchen. The New York Times Neediest Cases Fund distributes support to organizations working throughout New York City. For great local organizations near you, check out this twitter thread from our reporter, Kendra Pierre-Louis, who asked followers to recommend their favorite organizations working throughout the U.S. Want even more? Don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter!  If you take an action we recommend in one of our episodes, do us a favor and tell us about it! We’d love to hear how it went and what it felt like. Record a short voice memo on your phone and send it to us at howtosaveaplanet@spotify.com. We might use it in an upcoming episode.
Dec 10, 2020
Should We Go Nuclear?
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When it comes to nuclear energy, many people have strong opinions. Some say that if you're not on board with nuclear energy, then you aren't serious about addressing the climate crisis. Nuclear, after all, produces a lot of electricity and doesn't emit greenhouse gases while making energy. Others say that nuclear power tries to solve an illness with more of the disease. They say that nuclear energy, like fossil fuels, is a product of old thinking that ignores the full suite of its environmental impact - the persistence of nuclear waste, and the harm caused by mining for materials, like uranium, that power nuclear energy plants. In this week's episode, we wade into the debate. We look at the history of nuclear energy, how it became so polarized, and whether it holds the promise to get us off fossil fuels now, when we most need to. Calls to Action If you want to be part of reaching the 100% clean energy by 2035 goal for the US, there are lots of organizations working toward this. If you want to join those efforts, here are a few that you might want to consider. If you're a college student, for example, you might get involved with Environment America's 100 Renewable Campus campaign and try to push your school to go renewable.  The Sierra Club has a broader campaign called Ready For 100, to help you encourage your community to go renewable. Similarly, in Minnesota, the local 350.org Chapter has the 100% Campaign. Your local 350.org chapter may have a similar program – it's worth checking out. If you can't find a campaign near you, consider starting your own. The Climate Access Network has a toolkit on starting your own 100 percent renewable campaign (joining is required). Also, if you haven't already, subscribe to our newsletter! It’s great, we promise. You can sign up here. And if you take any of the actions we recommend, tell us about it! Send a voice message to howtosaveaplanet@spotify.com. We might use it in an upcoming episode.
Dec 03, 2020
If Miami Will Be Underwater, Why Is Construction Booming?
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Miami Beach could be mostly underwater within eighty years, but construction of new beachfront properties is booming. What’s behind this disconnect? To find out, writer Sarah Miller went undercover posing as a high end buyer to meet with real estate agents across the city. Here’s the story of what she found. Sarah Miller’s piece, along with 40 other amazing essays by women at the forefront of the climate movement, appear in the book Ayana co-edited with Dr. Katharine Wilkinson, All We Can Save: Truth, Courage, and Solutions for the Climate Crisis. To find out more about the book and all of the contributors, visit allwecansave.earth. The essay is read by actor Julia Louis-Dreyfus, as excerpted from the star-studded audiobook for All We Can Save. Calls to action Check out this map of sea level rise projections from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to see what areas we likely to become inundated. Check out the rest of the climate anthology that Ayana co-edited, All We Can Save: Truth, Courage, and Solutions for the Climate Crisis, at allwecansave.earth. Since we’re a podcast, we recommend checking out the audiobook version, which includes America Fererra, Janet Mock, Sophia Bush, Ilana Glazer, and Jane Fonda among the readers. If you take an action we recommend in one of our episodes, do us a favor and tell us about it! We’d love to hear how it went and what it felt like. Record a short voice memo on your phone and send it to us at howtosaveaplanet@spotify.com. We might use it in an upcoming episode.
Nov 26, 2020
Trying to Talk to Family about Climate Change? Here's How
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It’s important to talk about climate change. But how do you talk about it with friends and family who don't believe it's real, or don’t think we can do anything about it? We hear from a father and son who successfully navigated this conversation, and we bring you step-by-step tips from an expert on how to have a conversation where both sides actually hear each other. Maybe try it out this socially-distanced Thanksgiving! For more details, sign up for our newsletter. Here are the six steps outlined by Steve Deline with the New Conversation Initiative on how to have difficult conversations about climate change. Step 1 – Set realistic expectations for yourself! Your initial goal should be to lower the temperature around this issue. Even if you just succeed in attempting to talk to them one on one, or expressing a DESIRE to do so, that’s an important step forward! Do NOT set yourself an expectation that you will change how they feel about climate all in one go!  Step 2 – Find a buddy! Find someone you trust and feel comfortable with who’s down to be your support before and after having a challenging conversation with a friend or family member. Talk to them about what your fears are, and name some goals for what you’re doing to make this one go different.  Step 3 – Find a quiet moment to talk to your family member Ideally do it when you can be one-on-one, NOT surrounded by the whole family at the actual Thanksgiving table! Be direct and say “Hey, I’d love to find a time to talk more about this.” So that they have a chance to opt in. Step 4 – Listen! When the time comes to talk, start by letting them know that you really want to understand how they feel about climate change. Listen, and ask follow up questions “Tell me more? Why do you feel that way?” But importantly, DON’T RESPOND. Don’t engage with the parts that you disagree with. Just give them a chance to talk it out and be heard, you want to let them get the crux of their feelings on the subject off their chest.  Step 5 – Acknowledge that you disagree Let them know what you think. For example “Got it. So you’re probably not surprised to hear it but I think climate change is real and human-caused.” But then most importantly, say “BUT I really want to find a way to talk to you about it openly, and better understand what each other thinks, even if we don’t agree.” In other words, name the elephant in the room – that you disagree – and name it without being upset about it! Step 6 – Make it personal. Turn the conversation away from dueling facts, and towards life and experiences. For example, I might share a story about my friend Laurel, whose sister lost her home to a wildfire in Paradise, CA, and how hearing her story was the first time I felt a knot of fear in my stomach, that my own community could be in danger of the same thing. The key here is to share vulnerably, and then talk about how it made you FEEL. And then (most importantly) invite them to do the same – bring emotion explicitly into the conversation. Some more resources that we recommend: The Secret to Talking about Climate Change, from the Alliance for Climate Education How to Talk About Climate Change at Thanksgiving Dinner feat. Dr. Katharine Hayhoe, by Young Evangelicals for Climate Action Bob says to send your conservative family members to RepublicEN.org, where they can talk to them in the language of conservatism A few of the research papers telling us that climate conversations matter: Discussing global warming leads to greater acceptance of climate science Children can foster climate change concern among their parents The influence of personal beliefs, friends, and family in building climate change concern among adolescents If you have a conversation about climate change, do us a favor and tell us about it! We’d love to hear how it went and what it felt like. Record a short voice memo on your phone and send it to us at howtosaveaplanet@spotify.com. We might use it in an upcoming episode.
Nov 19, 2020
Are Electric Cars Really Better for the Climate?
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We love listener mail! You've sent us some amazing notes. Some made us laugh, some made us cry, and some made us say – hey, that’s a great question! We should answer it. So this week, we dig into one of your questions, and in the process, resolve an argument for a couple who can’t decide what kind of car is better for the climate. -Interested in how electric vehicles stack up? This calculator from the Union of Concerned Scientist lets you compare emissions from EVs with internal combustion engine vehicles in different regions across the U.S.  -Transport & Environment has a similar calculator for folks in the European Union -If you want to check out the report discussed in this episode, comparing the environmental impacts of EVs and other vehicles, you can find it here! -Send us a voice memo! We love hearing from listeners! Send us your questions, Have you taken one of the actions we’ve recommended? Have some burning climate questions that just need to be answered? An episode idea you can’t wait to hear? Just have some climate feelings?! Record a short voice memo on your phone and send it to howtosaveaplanet@spotify.com. We might use it in a future episode! -Subscribe to the newsletter! It’s great, we promise. You can sign up here. Please note: The original version of this episode contained an inaccurate statement about why electric cars accelerate faster. We regret the error and have updated the episode. How to Save a Planet is a Spotify original podcast and Gimlet production. You can follow us @how2saveaplanet on Twitter and Instagram, and email us at howtosaveaplanet@spotify.com How to Save a Planet is hosted by Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson and Alex Blumberg. Our reporters and producers are Rachel Waldholz, Kendra Pierre-Louis, Anna Ladd and Felix Poon. Our senior producer is Lauren Silverman. Our editor is Caitlin Kenney. Sound design, mixing and original music by Emma Munger. Additional music by Bobby Lord, Billy Libby and Catherine Anderson. Full music credits can be found on our website. Our fact checker this episode is Claudia Geib. Thanks to Olivia, Patrick, Molly, and all the listeners who wrote in! And special thanks to Ami Bogin and Harry Bishop, whose question inspired this episode. 
Nov 13, 2020
How Much Does the President Matter for the Climate?
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When it comes to climate change, it can feel like our future hangs in the balance of this presidential election in the U.S. But how much does the president really matter? And how can climate action move forward regardless of who wins? This week, Alex and Ayana talk with Abigail Dillen of Earthjustice about fighting for climate in the courts. Then, we speak with Benji Backer of the American Conservation Coalition about changing the climate conversation among conservatives.   Call to action: Make sure all the votes are counted! Help safeguard the democratic process by signing up for updates from a new coalition called Protect the Results. Sign up for our newsletter!
Nov 05, 2020
Presenting: Drilled
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Decades ago, the oil company Exxon made a decision that drastically changed our country’s response to climate change. At the time, the company’s scientists were warning about global warming and Exxon was investing in the research and development of renewable energy technologies. But instead of going down the path of pursuing renewables, a small group of powerful people decided to double down on fossil fuels. Today, we’re sharing the story of this inflection point, as told on the first season of the podcast Drilled. If you like what you hear, find Drilled in your favorite podcast app, or at drillednews.com. Want more?  Read this article in Scientific American: Exxon Knew about Climate Change almost 40 years ago, and see more reporting on the topic on Twitter with the hashtag #ExxonKnew  Listen to the rest of the first season of Drilled. Also, check out the current season of Drilled. In the latest season, reporter and host Amy Westervelt is telling the story of a decades-long case between Chevron and an Indigenous group in Ecuador. It's a wild story with a lot of twists and turns that ultimately highlights just how far oil companies are willing to go to avoid accountability. Our podcast now has a patron saint Allow us to introduce you to Eunice Newton Foote, the scientist who discovered that adding carbon dioxide to the atmosphere would cause planetary warming. And she discovered this in 1856!! Check out this paper she published 164 years ago. She tried to warn us! #VoteClimate And lastly, the election ends in just a few days. Besides voting, you can still get involved at a local level. We recommend checking out Lead Locally — an organization whose mission is electing community leaders who are dedicated to stopping big fossil fuel projects & protecting our climate. They have info on the slate of local candidates they are supporting this election and you can even sign up to phone or text bank for them. 
Oct 29, 2020
Cold Hard Cash for Your Greenhouse Gas
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Cold Hard Cash for Your Greenhouse Gas When we think about what’s heating up the planet, we may picture CO2 from smokestacks and tailpipes. But there are other greenhouse gases that are even more dangerous. And some of these are hiding in garages and sheds all over the country. We’re talking about refrigerants. They’re the secret sauce behind how refrigerators and air conditioners keep things cool. But they’re heating up the planet. This week, in collaboration with NPR’s Planet Money, we take a ride with a couple of guys who tackle these climate threats with a pair of extremely high-tech tools: a van, and some cold hard cash. Then, we talk about the climate solution you could be interacting with every time you buy ice cream. Also, sign up for our newsletter if you haven’t already!  Calls to action Find out what refrigerant your local grocer uses at climatefriendlysupermarkets.org. Check out how the big supermarket chains are doing on HFCs using the Supermarket Scorecard. As for your own household fridge, if you're in the market or know someone who is, choose an HFC-free model. Learn more about how to properly dispose of your fridge, freezer, air conditioners, and other such appliances at the end of their useful lives. Of course, you can always call Tim and Gabe to help with disposal too! Check out their work at Tradewater and Refrigerant Finders. Sign Green America’s Cool It! Campaign petition. While you’re there, find a climate friendly supermarket near you and thank them! If you’re a business owner, submit a letter to the Trump Administration asking them to ratify the Kigali Amendment, the international treaty that sets the phase down schedule for HFCs globally. You would be joining many states, major industry refrigerant suppliers, and elected officials from both sides of the aisle. The AIM Act is a bipartisan bill, supported by both the House and the Senate, that effectively would enforce the same HFC phase down schedule as the Kigali Amendment without needing to ratify it – it would cut HFC use by 85% by 2035! However, it’s likely to be vetoed by the current President. So...vote, specifically, #VoteClimate. And when it comes to local candidates those really matter too for things like public transit and composting and bike lines, so please do a little digging of your own on local candidates. Finally, if you do end up taking one of these actions — do us a favor and tell us about it! We’d love to hear about what you did and what it felt like. So if you do something, record a short voice memo on your phone and send it to us at howtosaveaplanet@spotify.com. We might use it in an upcoming episode.
Oct 22, 2020
Fighting Fire with Fire
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From California's crimson skies to smoke so thick along Colorado's front range that sent people indoors for days, this year has been an especially bad one for extreme wildfires. On today's episode, we ask, how did the wildfires get so bad – and what can we do to address them?  Call(s) to action Help build fire adapted communities. If you're interested in learning more about the range of small, wonky, zoning-type solutions to reduce pressures driving people to the WUI (pronounced wooie!)and make managed retreat a more palatable option, check out fireadaptednetwork.org, where you can keep track of all the little policy changes that would actually help make a big difference. Prepare Your Home for Fire. The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, better known as CalFire, has a great resource to teach you how to prepare your home for wildfire. You can find it at readyforwildfire.org. Learn More about Fires from Bobbie Scopa through the audio stories she tells on her website, Bobbie on Fire
Oct 15, 2020
How 2020 Became a Climate Election
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For years, American politicians have failed to take climate change seriously. The 2016 presidential debates didn’t even include a single climate question. Fast-forward four years, and climate change is a major election issue. So how did 2020 become a climate election? This week, how a bunch of outsiders turned the Green New Deal into a national rallying cry — and pushed Joe Biden to adopt the most ambitious climate platform in U.S. history. Want to take action?  Most important: VOTE! Check out Vote.org to make sure you’re registered to vote and find information on polling stations, early voting or absentee voting in your state You can check out the Sunrise Movement and read the THRIVE Agenda  You can read Joe Biden’s climate plan and environmental justice plan (they’re short!) or watch his recent big speech on climate change You can check out the Blue New Deal  Or read the original Green New Deal resolution - again! How to Save a Planet is a Spotify original podcast and Gimlet production. You can follow us @how2saveaplanet on Twitter and Instagram, and email us at howtosaveaplanet@spotify.com How to Save a Planet is hosted by Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson and Alex Blumberg. Our reporters and producers are Rachel Waldholz, Kendra Pierre-Louis, Anna Ladd and Felix Poon. Our senior producer is Lauren Silverman. Our editor is Caitlin Kenney. Sound design, mixing and original music by Emma Munger. Additional music by Peter Leonard, Catherine Anderson, and Billy Libby. Full music credits can be found on our website. Our fact checker this episode is Claudia Geib. Special thanks to Rachel Strom.
Oct 08, 2020
Making Republicans Environmentalists Again
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The Republican Party has been almost uniformly opposed to climate action for years – nobody more so than President Donald Trump. But it wasn’t always like this. On today’s episode, we look back at how conservatives came to see the denial of climate science as a kind of badge of honor – and we talk to two conservative activists who are trying to change that. Want to take action?  Check out the American Conservation Coalition and read their American Climate Contract You can find more information at republicEN.org and check out their podcast, EcoRight Speaks. You can also read the full memo we mentioned in the episode - the Global Climate Science Communications Action Plan (get ready to be mad) Or listen to the podcast Drilled for a deep dive on the fossil fuel industry’s long misinformation campaign Don’t forget to VOTE! Check out vote.org to make sure you’re registered to vote, find your polling station or get information on absentee ballots in your state.  Want to know more? We have a reading list! Losing Earth by Nathaniel Rich Merchants of Doubt by Naomi Oreskes & Eric Conway The Republican Reversal by James Turner and Andrew Isenberg Dark Money by Jane Mayer How to Save a Planet is a Spotify original podcast and Gimlet production. You can follow us @how2saveaplanet on Twitter and Instagram, and email us at howtosaveaplanet@spotify.com How to Save a Planet is hosted by Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson and Alex Blumberg. Our reporters and producers are Rachel Waldholz, Kendra Pierre-Louis, Anna Ladd and Felix Poon. Our senior producer is Lauren Silverman. Our editor is Caitlin Kenney. Sound design and mixing for this episode by Sam Bair with original music by Emma Munger. Full music credits are available on our website.  Our fact checker this episode is Claudia Geib. Special thanks to Rachel Strom. Thanks to Anthony Leiserowitz for helping us understand some of this history. This episode also relied on phenomenal reporting from a number of places, including the books Losing Earth by Nathaniel Rich, Merchants of Doubt by Naomi Oreskes and Eric Conway, Kochland by Christopher Leonard, Dark Money by Jane Mayer, and the podcast Drilled, hosted by Amy Westervelt.
Oct 01, 2020
Black Lives Matter and the Climate
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Black Lives Matter is the largest movement in U.S. history, and it’s had environmental justice as part of its policy platform from the start. In today’s show, Alex and Ayana talk about why the fight for racial justice is critical to saving the planet, and what the broader climate movement can learn from the Black Lives Matter movement. Calls to action Check out the Movement for Black Lives: m4bl.org  Read the BREATHE Act: breatheact.org Check out Ayana’s OpEd: Racism derails our attempts to fight the climate crisis Pick up a copy of the book Ayana co-edited, All We Can Save: Truth, Courage, and Solutions for the Climate Crisis, which includes an essay by Colette Pichon-Battle.
Sep 24, 2020
Unnatural Disasters
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As this summer has made clear: from hurricanes to wildfires, climate change is exposing more of us to extreme weather. This week we hear what it's like to survive a life-changing disaster, get tips on how to prepare — from a disasterologist — and learn why you should never call a disaster “natural.” Call(s) to action Build a go bag or preparedness kit. You can check out www.ready.gov/kit for some tips on how to build your own bag. Remember it's a guide - not a rulebook - so think through what you will really need in a disaster. Kendra packed a spare pair of glasses, just in case, for example.  Create your own disaster plan. The kit is only the first step in disaster preparedness. While building your bag also think through your disaster plan. You can check out ready.gov/plans to think through things like if you had to evacuate what your route would be and where you would go. If you have children, www.ready.gov/kids , helps you incorporate your kids into your disaster planning - which is important because they will be going through this with you. Prepare your home for your disaster. We'll link to specific tips on doing this in the additional reading, but prepping your home for the inevitable increases the odds it will survive. If you're a homeowner it's worth checking out what your insurance policy says. If you are a renter, it's worth getting renters insurance, though it's typically less comprehensive than homeowners insurance.  Find out what your local government and community organizations are doing to prepare for disaster. This is everything from attending meetings that your emergency managers are holding (and if they aren't holding them, why not?) And if you want to go even further consider getting community emergency response team or CERT training. For more info on the climate anthology that Ayana has co-edited, All We Can Save: Truth, Courage, and Solutions for the Climate Crisis, and to order a copy, head to allwecansave.earth. It includes poignant essays by Christine Nieves Rodrigues, our own Kendra Pierre-Louis and 40 other women climate leaders. 
Sep 10, 2020
20 Million Trees
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Climate change is a big problem — and we’re going to need a big team to solve it. That means reaching people who might not think of themselves as climate activists. This week, we explore what the climate movement can learn from YouTubers... starting with MrBeast. Sign up for our newsletter here! (gimletmedia.com/shows/howtosaveaplanet) We’ll send you calls to action, must-read articles and other surprises every week when we put out a new episode. Want to plant a tree? Here are some treesources: Find the right tree for the place you live with the National Wildlife Federation’s Plant Finder: nwf.org/nativeplantfinder Learn how to plant and take care of your tree: arborday.org/trees Some cities will give you a tree to plant for free! Here are a few: Los Angeles, CA: cityplants.org Denver, CO: theparkpeople.org/what-we-do/denver-digs-trees Portland, OR: portlandoregon.gov/parks/73498 St. Louis, MO: moreleaf.org Philadelphia, PA: treephilly.org Fort Worth, TX: fortworthtexas.gov/forestry/free-trees Austin, TX: treefolks.org/free-trees If you aren’t able to plant a tree, you can adopt one! Take care of a street tree in your neighborhood in these cities: NYC: https://www.nyrp.org/about/programs/tree-giveaway/ Miami, FL: https://www.miamidade.gov/global/service.page?Mduid_service=ser1467835324112359 Richmond, CA: http://www.groundworkrichmond.org/adopt-a-tree.html Cambridge, MA: https://www.cambridgema.gov/iwantto/adoptatree Lexington, KY: https://ufi.ca.uky.edu/adopt-a-tree Minneapolis MN (get a free beer when you adopt!): http://www.brewingabetterforest.com/adopt-a-tree.html Pinecrest, FL: https://www.pinecrest-fl.gov/our-village/green-initiatives/adopt-a-tree-programs Fairview Park, OH: https://www.fairviewpark.org/service-department/adopt-a-tree/ Stafford Township, NJ https://www.staffordnj.gov/418/Adopt-A-Tree If your city has a tree planting program too, send it to us and we’ll add it to the list! howtosaveaplanet@gmail.com Send us pictures of you hugging your saplings on Instagram and Twitter @how2saveaplanet. Learn How to Stop a Bird Murdering Cat
Sep 03, 2020
The Green Wave
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It started with students walking out of school to demand more action on climate change, built into an international movement – and then was propelled forward by a pandemic. Today on the show, the surprising story behind Europe’s climate plan, and what the rest of us can learn from it. Want to get involved? Find your local chapter of the Sunrise Movement or Fridays for Future. Or check out the Global Day of Climate Action on Sept. 25, 2020. Want to read the Green New Deal resolution for yourself? You can find the full text here. Don’t be scared, it’s only 14 pages. Send us an email: howtosaveaplanet@spotify.com. Find us on Twitter and Instagram @how2saveaplanet. How to Save a Planet is a Spotify Original Podcast and Gimlet Production. It’s hosted by Alex Blumberg and Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson. Our reporters and producers are Kendra Pierre-Louis, Rachel Waldholz and Anna Ladd. Our senior producer is Lauren Silverman. Our editor is Caitlin Kenney. Sound design, mixing and original music by Emma Munger. Additional music by Bobby Lord. Thanks to Manon Dufour and Annika Hedberg for talking with us about the European Green Deal. Special thanks to Sandra Riaño, Rachel Strom and Whitney Potter.
Aug 27, 2020
The Witch of Wind
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For decades, coal fueled the town of Somerset, MA. But when the coal plant went bust -- taking with it millions in tax dollars -- the town struggled. That’s when a local politician, the self-proclaimed Queen of Coal, learned that an unexpected industry could revive the economy. Today on the show how Somerset, MA went from a town of coal to a launching point for the burgeoning offshore wind industry. Want to help speed the transition away from coal? Check out the Beyond Coal Campaign. Want to nerd out on wind policy and how to jumpstart this industry? Check out the policy memo, polling and graphics by Urban Ocean Lab, Data for Progress, and Evergreen Collaborative. Send us an email to howtosaveaplanet@spotify.com. Find us on Twitter and Instagram @how2saveaplanet. How to Save a Planet is a Spotify Original Podcast and Gimlet Production. It’s hosted by Alex Blumberg and Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson. Our reporters and producers are Kendra Pierre-Louis, Rachel Waldholz and Anna Ladd. Our senior producer is Lauren Silverman. Our editor is Caitlin Kenney. Sound design, mixing and original music by Emma Munger. Additional music by Bobby Lord, Catherine Anderson, and Billy Libby. Our fact checker this episode is James Gaines. Special thanks to Holly McNamara, Blythe Terrell and Devon Taylor.
Aug 20, 2020
How screwed are we?
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How screwed are we? When it comes to climate change, that’s the question on a lot of people’s minds. Alex and Ayana ask experts and regular folks about what worries them most and what we can do to avoid that future.
Aug 06, 2020
Introducing How to Save a Planet
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Does climate change freak you out? Want to know what we, collectively, can do about it? Us too. How to Save a Planet is a podcast that asks the big questions: what do we need to do to solve the climate crisis, and how do we get it done?  Join us, journalist Alex Blumberg and scientist and policy nerd Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson, as we scour the Earth for solutions, talk to people who are making a difference, ask hard questions, crack dumb jokes and — episode by episode — figure out how to build the future we want.
Jul 31, 2020