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The Climate Minute

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This is the podcast site of the Massachusetts Climate Action Network bringing you climate news and highlighting local action in Massachusetts and across the nation.

This is the podcast site of the Massachusetts Climate Action Network bringing you climate news and highlighting local action in Massachusetts and across the nation.
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This is the podcast site of the Massachusetts Climate Action Network bringing you climate news and highlighting local action in Massachusetts and across the nation.






Taxing Clean Energy: The Climate Minute

The tax proposal before Congress will be damaging to the clean energy industry. Listen in and then call your Member of Congress. Download Enhanced Podcast

Duration: 00:18:45

The future is now in the CA wildfires: The Climate Minute

Wildfires destroy parts of California, while the 45th president destroys a national monument. Listen in as we discuss. Download Enhanced Podcast

Duration: 00:16:09

How to save the world with a donut or a circle: The Climate Minute

A report that African Americans are more likely to live in toxic neighborhoods near oil installations is our starting point. This unsettling fact leads us to consider an idea from the IEA recognizing the synergy between fair energy availability and carbon pollution reduction, as well as the concept of a circular economy from a UN document. (See the links for our 2015 discussion of the Next System Project.) Of course, all this is at odds with our capitalist/consumerist dogma. Is capitalism...

Duration: 00:24:48

Virginia’s green moves show that #WeAreStillIn: The Climate Minute

The world made more progress on climate at the ‘23rd Conference of the Parties’ in Bonn, putting some meat on the bones of the Paris Agreement. The US gummint was present and unhelpful, but American cities and states were there in force. As evidence of the ‘sub-national’ efforts to say #WeAReStillIn, the state of Virginia moving to join the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI.) This is encouraging on many levels. This good news is topped off by a new study showing that in many places of...

Duration: 00:20:01

A modern-day Constitutional convention? You mean for real? The Climate Minute Podcast

This week, we discuss two significant sleeper issues that will influence climate policy for a long time to come, and a few local initiatives for Massachusetts residents. Charlie Pierce highlighted the first understated, but very important, issue in a report for Esquire. A right-wing movement is pushing state legislatures to approve the idea of holding a new constitutional convention to rewrite the constitution. The convention would be open and would focus on the balanced budget amendment....

Duration: 00:20:08

Imperfect allies: The Climate Minute

There is a lot going on in Bonn this week, at the annual climate conference. In addition to working out the details of the Paris Accords, there were protests of the US gummint shilling for coal, and protests against Jerry Brown for not being pure enough. Listen in as we discuss. Download Enhanced Podcast

Duration: 00:18:33

Tax plan threatens clean energy: The Climate Minute

Tax reform is the big buzz in Washington, D.C. this week, but notable for climate hawks is the fact that the program is attacking renewable energy. This reform is more of a “tax cut” program, and it slashes many of the direct credits on the taxes paid by the renewable energy industry. That credit is critical for making renewable energy proposals financially viable. Notably, these credits were part of a major bipartisan deal reached in December 2015. In a turn of strange, but good news,...

Duration: 00:21:33

Elections in VA, meetings in Bonn: The Climate Minute

Tuesday’s election has good news for Climate Hawks, with the prospects for state level climate action improving. That, coupled with efforts like America’s Pledge at the Bonn climate conference make us feel better. Listen in. Download Enhanced Podcast

Duration: 00:19:32

MCAN helps Muni towns go green: The Climate Minute

About 13% of Massachusetts citizens get their electric power through local “Municipal” utilities. These are a good opportunity to make our state’s energy usage cleaner. Listen in to Carol Oldham, MCAN’s Executive Director, as she describes ways to help these Muni’s reduce carbon emissions. After that, use this map of electric utilities to check your supplier and then send an email to: for information on how you can help your town’s utility go green. Download...

Duration: 00:21:26

Power outages in Boston and San Juan: The Climate Minute

Last week’s storm gave Boston a little taste of the bitter circumstances in Puerto Rico. We ask how the island can be rebuilt in a sustainable model, especially with the departure of Whitefish Energy Holdings. On a different island, New Zealand considers offering a home to climate refugees. Back in Boston, we consider the implications of a hurricane in Boston proper. Listen in. Download Enhanced Podcast

Duration: 00:22:21

Sandy+5: The Climate Minute

Hard to believe that Hurricane Sandy was five years ago this week. On today’s podcast, we discuss how the devastation from that storm broke the media silence on climate change—and the media seesaw we have been on since then. We celebrate the technical advances in solar and wind power, which have marched forward despite the political obstacles. Ever vigilant toward the continued tragedy in Puerto Rico, we examine the renewable energy access provided to the American protectorate by Elon...

Duration: 00:18:12

Activism is the rent we pay to live on the planet: The Climate Minute

How should we react to the present and future devastation of climate change, and our President’s abject failure to act? What should we do to maintain our spirit and drive? While we mangle a few quotes on the way, it seems Alice Walker sums it up saying “Activism is the rent I pay to live on the planet.” There are no easy answers, but we discuss. What do you think? Download Enhanced Podcast

Duration: 00:22:41

Trust, Necessity and RICO: The Climate Minute Podcast

What is the “necessity defense,” why does it matter, and how is under threat? On the flip side, how concerned should we be about the rising popularity of companies using federal racketeering laws to silence opponents? This week we answered these questions in detail. Here is a sneak peek – the necessity defense, alongside the public trust doctrine, are legal constructs that climate hawks should know. Concerned citizens and groups may be able to use these overarching legal principles as...

Duration: 00:22:07

Amazon+Boston=Green? The Climate Minute Podcast

Eversource is reported to have manipulated natural gas markets, restricting the use of existing pipelines even as they have argued that we need to build more pipelines. What gives? At the same time, Boston is vying for the prize of Amazon’s new headquarters. What would the arrival of another corporate behemoth mean for the clean and sustainable development of our city? Listen in as we contemplate the implications! Download Enhanced Podcast

Duration: 00:22:57

A sustainable future for Puerto Rico! The Climate Minute Podcast

Hurricane Maria slammed into the island of Puerto Rico, an American protectorate, a few weeks ago. While it is no longer making the top news headlines, the island is still in profound distress. Over fifty percent of the people are without clean water and eighty to ninety percent lack electricity for basic needs, let alone communication via cellphones or news access. Puerto Rico had an old, fragile electrical system, and when the hurricane came through it knocked everything down. In a world...

Duration: 00:20:24

Pruitt’s Dirty Power Plans: The Climate Minute Podcast

The malevolent administrator of the EPA announced his intent to replace the Obama-era Clean Power Plan with a different plan that he will dream up at a later date. Listen in as we discuss. Download Enhanced Podcast

Duration: 00:22:23

Boston and GM make wise moves: The Climate Minute Podcast

This week, two heartening events occurred. The Boston City Council approved a plan for the city to buy its power under a ‘community aggregation’ model that will allow the use of green energy. Also, auto behemoth General Motors has committed to an all electric future. Listen in! Download Enhanced Podcast

Duration: 00:14:50

When is it time to discuss climate? The Climate Minute Podcast

Question: What do the Las Vegas shooting and this season’s hurricanes have in common? Answer: It is always too soon to discuss the ‘politics’ until it is too late to bother. The common refrain to ‘be sensitive to the victims’ following disasters needs to be challenged. In the immediate aftermath of these events, we can and should focus on the causes and possible responses. One way to do that is to propose bold new ideas, and allow them to move to the mainstream of our national discussion....

Duration: 00:18:25

“Four minutes to save the world?” Formidable but not inconceivable: The Climate Minute Podcast

We take a deep dive on a recent controversial article in Nature Geoscience. It suggests that we have more time and thus a more realistic chance of keeping global temperatures in check. While climate deniers are holding the article up as proof that environmentalists exaggerate the concern over climate science, it turns out—the concern and urgency is still very real. This article, however, gives us significantly more hope. The basic difference is that prior estimates gave us only a decade to...

Duration: 00:18:03

Environmental Injustice in Puerto Rico: The Climate Minute Podcast

Climate-assisted hurricanes Irma and Maria have devastated the lives of American citizens in Puerto Rico. Reports tell of an entire American island of three million people without either power or fresh water some six days after the storm. This circumstance has set up a test of our national character. Will we turn our backs on our own citizens, or will we meet the challenge of new climate driven weather patterns? Listen in as we discuss. Download Enhanced Podcast

Duration: 00:18:13

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