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Political Climate

News & Politics Podcasts

A bipartisan podcast on energy and environmental politics in America. Presented by the USC Schwarzenegger Institute. Political Climate goes beyond the echo chambers to bring you civil conversations, fierce debates and insider perspectives, with hosts and guests from across the political spectrum. Join Democrat and Republican energy experts Brandon Hurlbut and Shane Skelton, along with Greentech Media's Julia Pyper, as we explore how energy and environment policies get made.

A bipartisan podcast on energy and environmental politics in America. Presented by the USC Schwarzenegger Institute. Political Climate goes beyond the echo chambers to bring you civil conversations, fierce debates and insider perspectives, with hosts and guests from across the political spectrum. Join Democrat and Republican energy experts Brandon Hurlbut and Shane Skelton, along with Greentech Media's Julia Pyper, as we explore how energy and environment policies get made.

Location:

United States

Description:

A bipartisan podcast on energy and environmental politics in America. Presented by the USC Schwarzenegger Institute. Political Climate goes beyond the echo chambers to bring you civil conversations, fierce debates and insider perspectives, with hosts and guests from across the political spectrum. Join Democrat and Republican energy experts Brandon Hurlbut and Shane Skelton, along with Greentech Media's Julia Pyper, as we explore how energy and environment policies get made.

Language:

English


Episodes

The Current Political Climate

1/15/2021
We always new that 2021 would start with a bang — between the Georgia Senate runoff election, the inauguration of President-Elect Joe Biden, cabinet announcements, coronavirus relief and, of course, earnest discussions on the future of American climate policy. A deadly assault on the United States Capitol incited by the President was not on the calendar, although the seeds of division and misinformation were sown long ago. So what’s the path forward? Democrats have secured a narrow...

Duration:01:19:33

A Blueprint for American Climate Action and a Modern Clean Energy Economy

12/31/2020
The past few years have been a mixed bag for climate. U.S. emissions declined to their lowest level in three decade this year, but these reductions came at an incredible cost as the economy shut down amid the coronavirus pandemic. The challenge now is to make these emissions cuts sustainable for years to come, while getting millions of Americans back to work. We dig into a new analysis on how to put the U.S. on a path to deep decarbonization and economic growth on this episode of Political...

Duration:00:51:39

Saul Griffith on Mobilizing America to Fight Climate Change and Win the Future

12/23/2020
It will take a massive war-time mobilization effort to effectively address the climate emergency, argues Saul Griffith — inventor, MacArthur genius fellow, CEO of Otherlab, and co-founder of Rewiring America, an organization dedicated to creating millions of American jobs while combating climate change. So, what does a war-time mobilization effort look like? How much will it cost? Will we have to make sacrifices in the process? What does this shift mean for the future of utilities? And will...

Duration:01:12:44

DITCHED: How Climate Fintech Is Disrupting Traditional Finance

12/14/2020
Crowdfunding, blockchain, artificial intelligence and neobanks. What do all of these buzzwords have to do with fighting climate change? On this episode of Political Climate’s DITCHED series, host Julia Pyper speaks to the authors of a new report on “climate fintech,” an emerging ecosystem that leverages digital technology to help move more capital into climate change solutions. The report, published by the startup accelerator New Energy Nexus, offers a valuable overview of what this rapidly...

Duration:00:37:19

How the Energy Transition Accelerated in a Turbulent Year

12/10/2020
2020 has been a remarkable year. It witnessed the coronavirus pandemic, an economic crash, a historic and divisive U.S. election, widespread protests for racial justice and more. And yet, amid all of the turbulence, the world took several major steps toward realizing a low carbon future. The numbers are still coming in and the trends are still formalizing, but we have a pretty good sense of how the climate and energy landscape evolved over the past several months. On this episode of...

Duration:00:43:20

DITCHED: New York's Divest/Invest Commitments

12/8/2020
Cities and states have powerful roles to play in divesting from fossil fuels and directing investments toward sustainable industries. There are a number of ways for these sub-national actors to participate in the divest/invest movement and help pave the way for more widespread action. In this episode of Political Climate’s DITCHED series, we go to the home of Wall Street and look at steps being taken by New York City and New York State to accelerate the movement of funds from brown to green...

Duration:00:47:38

Neil Chatterjee on FERC’s Role in Enabling the Energy Transition

12/3/2020
When Neil Chatterjee was appointed to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission by President Trump in 2017, stakeholders in the climate and clean energy space were concerned about what his agenda would be. Headlines dubbed him “McConnell’s coal guy” and “fossil fuel champion Chatterjee,” referring to his role as a former aide to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY). But Chatterjee has proven to be much more than a “coal guy,” despite his sympathies for struggling Kentucky coal...

Duration:00:56:02

DITCHED: Why 2020 Could Be a Tipping Point for Fossil Fuels

11/30/2020
2020 is shaping up to be a pivotal year for fossil fuel divestment. Despite economic disruptions caused by the coronavirus pandemic, a growing number of countries, companies and financial institutions are committing to quit coal and are beginning to ditch oil and gas projects, too. In this episode of Political Climate’s special DITCHED series, host Julia Pyper speaks to Tim Buckley at the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA) about what’s driving the increase in...

Duration:00:50:10

Why America Needs a Climate-Resilient Recovery

11/26/2020
The coronavirus pandemic has created an opportunity to reboot the American economy in a way that is cleaner and helps to mitigate climate change for future generations. But it’s not only that, this is also a moment to build back the U.S. economy with more resilience. The word “resilience” is thrown around frequently. But what does it really mean? And how should leaders be factoring resilience into their recovery efforts? In this episode, we speak to Norfolk, Virginia City Councilwoman...

Duration:00:54:00

DITCHED: Oil Companies Under Pressure

11/23/2020
A growing number of financial institutions are moving their investments from fossil fuels into less polluting projects and resources. So what do oil and gas companies make of this shift? Some of them are waking up to the clean energy transition in response to investor pressure. But there are leaders and laggards when it comes to oil and gas companies and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. There are also valid concerns about greenwashing. And yet, some of these firms are fundamentally...

Duration:00:27:02

Generation Green New Deal: The Pelosi Sit-In

11/19/2020
In the past two years, climate change has gone from the back burner to the center stage. Why? It all started with a protest in House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office in 2018. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez teamed up with a then-obscure youth activist group called Sunrise Movement to launch the fight for a Green New Deal. It took a lot of planning, courage, and luck to make the protest happen. We bring you the inside story of the Pelosi sit-in on this special episode from Generation Green New...

Duration:00:37:19

DITCHED: Greening the Banks

11/16/2020
Banks don’t just hold on to your dollars and cents, they also play a role in addressing the climate crisis. In the latest episode of Political Climate's DITCHED series, we take a closer look at the banking sector and what institutions like JP Morgan Chase, Bank of America, Wells Fargo and others can do to fight global warming. Patrick McCully, climate and energy director at the Rainforest Action Network, explains how activists are pressuring banks to clean up their act through initiatives...

Duration:00:50:05

Biden's Climate Mandate

11/12/2020
Young Americans voted in record numbers during the 2020 election and played a key role in tipping the scales to Joe Biden. Early research shows that climate change was a major driver of that robust turnout. The Sunrise Movement and other environmental groups mounted extensive campaigns to register and mobilize voters to oppose President Trump and vote climate champions into office. Biden’s climate platform isn’t the Green New Deal plan that many climate activists called for, and Democrats...

Duration:00:48:20

What the Election Results (so far) Mean for Climate and Energy

11/5/2020
Americans are waiting with bated breath for the results of a long and contentious election. At the time of publication, former Democratic Vice President Joe Biden looks poised to take the White House, while Republicans are likely to hold on to the Senate. But the final outcome of this unprecedented pandemic election remains uncertain, with ballots still being counted in several key states. In this episode, we discuss what we know so far — from the top of the ticket down to local ballot...

Duration:00:58:38

What to Watch for After Election Day

10/29/2020
What comes after November 3? As presidential candidates make their closing arguments, many stakeholders in the climate and energy community are already looking beyond Election Day. In this episode, experts discuss the top action items they’re watching for in a potential Biden versus returning Trump administration. What are the most tactical policy moves? Who will be making decisions? How will the private sector respond? What role will the courts play? We hear from Josh Freed, founder of...

Duration:01:00:52

Environmental Voter Turnout and Tipping the Scales

10/22/2020
At least 40 million Americans have already cast a ballot in early voting, with still more than a week until Election Day. In this episode of Political Climate, we examine if environmental issues are mobilizing voters the way that analysts anticipated. Who are those voters and do they hold sway? We discuss with Nathaniel Stinnett, founder of the Environmental Voter Project, a non-partisan organization focused on identifying inactive environmentalists across the United States and turning them...

Duration:00:55:44

How a Group of Billionaire Donors Want to Reshape US Politics

10/15/2020
There is a lot of money in American politics. Campaign spending in 2020 is expected to reach $11 billion dollars — making it the most expensive election in U.S. history. In light of these growing dollar figures, a group of billionaire donors from across the political spectrum say they’re laying down arms and joining forces to transform politics and tackle critical issues, such as climate change. The action plan is entitled: In This Together. In this episode, we speak to Dallas real estate...

Duration:00:50:24

Electing Climate Candidates

10/8/2020
How do you elect political candidates who will make tackling climate change a priority? In this episode, we speak to two groups attempting to figure that out and put climate change at the center of races up and down the ballot. In 2018, Caroline Spears launched the Climate Cabinet Action Fund to offer bespoke climate data, policy ideas and messaging suggestions to candidates and lawmakers. The organization currently focuses on the state level, where races are low-budget but highly...

Duration:00:58:30

'Crystal Clean': Takeaways From the Presidential Debate

10/1/2020
President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden faced off in their first debate this week. To the surprise of many, Fox News moderator Chris Wallace asked the presidential candidates a series of questions on climate change. Energy and environmental issues got more air time on Tuesday night than at all 2016 presidential debates combined. On this week's episode of Political Climate, our hosts discuss takeaways from the debate (from snippets in between interruptions). Did Trump...

Duration:01:00:18

How to Reboot the US Clean Energy Industry

9/24/2020
Before the COVID-19 pandemic, more Americans worked in clean energy than there were school teachers in the country. The once booming sector is now experiencing hundreds of thousands of job losses as a result of the coronavirus recession. What will it take to not only get these jobs back but to grow the clean energy sector beyond where it was at the start of the year, putting the industry at the center of a U.S. economic recovery? In this episode of Political Climate, we speak to Ellen...

Duration:00:59:37