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About this episode

This week on O+O, our hosts, Christiana, Tom and Paul delve into the latest International Energy Agency report which sounds the death knell on the fossil fuel era and welcome award-winning investigative journalist Amy Westervelt onto the show.

With the IEA’s publication of their World Energy Outlook report, Christiana, Tom and Paul assess what this means for the fossil fuel industry, national governments and the companies continuing to push the exponential growth of the renewable energy markets. The IEA report still offers us an opportunity, a very, very slim opportunity to act unitedly and decisively to keep within our global targets - can we heed this advice before the door finally closes on this opportunity?

We’re extremely excited to welcome Amy Westervelt as our guest this week. Amy is an award-winning investigative print and audio journalist, loved by our team for her true crime climate podcast Drilled. Join us as she shares her journey to launching Drilled and Critical Frequency, her podcast production company, and why she’s dedicating her time to unearth the nefarious actions of a few PR firms that enable incumbents to keep a stake in the climate crisis narrative.

Music this week comes from Nick Nuttall and his debut album, Just Because Some Bad Wind Blows, which draws on rich life experiences between his eccentric upbringing in the North of England, to his nearly two decades of work at the UN fighting the climate and environmental crises across the globe.




Amy Westervelt, Investigative climate journalist and Head of Drilled Media
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THINK TANKS Story: Meet the Shadowy Global Network Vilifying Climate Protesters


Nick Nuttall
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Album ‘Just Because Some Bad Wind Blows’ can be purchased here, or here
Watch the music video for ‘Just Because Some Bad Wind Blows’

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Full Transcript

Tom: [00:00:12] Hello and welcome to Outrage + Optimism. I'm Tom Rivett-Carnac.

Christiana: [00:00:15] I'm Christiana Figueres.

Paul: [00:00:16] And I'm Paul Dickinson.

Tom: [00:00:18] This week, we discuss the recent report from the International Energy Agency on the net zero roadmap, a global pathway to keep the 1.5 degree goal in reach. We speak to legendary podcaster Amy Westervelt, and we have music from Nick Nuttall. Thanks for being here.

Paul: [00:00:46] Nick Nuttall.

Tom: [00:00:48] Nick Nuttall, we've got to kick off with that. Christiana.

Paul: [00:00:51] This is Nick Nuttall, like Nick Nuttall, Nick Nuttall from like the UNFCCC, and from We Don't Have Time. And he's also making music. I mean, wow. 

Tom: [00:01:01] We will come to Nick later in the episode. But yes, we should start off mentioning that. Nick, Christiana, Nick was your Director of Communications for the Paris negotiations. Why don't we start with Nick?

Christiana: [00:01:08] Let's start with Nick. Well, what everybody has to know is that Nick, he'll probably kill us for revealing this. But, Nick, I don't know if he has actually gotten better by now, but whenever I walked into Nick's office in Bonn, it was hard to get to his desk because the floor was strewn with empty coke bottles. And he is just completely or was maybe under stress, completely addicted. And now I've forgotten whether it's Coke, Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, full Pepsi. But the bottles were definitely there. You could have strung all those bottles together and have made a boat. But that is my visual. And then Nick would be very, very focused on his desk. And when I opened the door, he would, you know, like, look up with those bright eyes of his and pretend like everything was fine. And I was always confounded as, how do I approach the desk?

Tom: [00:02:16] But it was a creative mess, I would say, because I mean, Nick, incredibly creative person. Obviously, ran the comms for Paris.

Christiana: [00:02:23] Unbelievably creative.

Tom: [00:02:24] Just, yeah. And as you will hear at the end of this episode, so stay tuned for Just Because Some Bad Wind Blows at the end.

Christiana: [00:02:31] And a multitasker, right. Multitasker. He is, he yes he I guess he earns his living with communications on climate and does a great job of that. But he's also, as you will hear, a singer and a composer. And you know what, he chose to stay in Germany after he finished working for the secretariat, which you and I, Tom, chose not to do. So there you have it.

Tom: [00:02:57] Yeah, there you have it. All right. So more from Nick later. But now we are going to dive in this week, as promised last week, to the report that recently came out from the International Energy Agency. And this is a pretty big deal. So this report came out about a week ago, a global pathway to keep the 1.5 degree goal in reach. And that is really the key message that that is still in reach. What they say and remember, the IEA is a political body that advises governments on energy pathways. It's often quite conservative. So you can say they're not some radical think tank that are trying to drive an agenda. But they say in this report that 1.5°C remains possible thanks to record growth in the clean energy tech sector and greater global ambition to get there. And the innovation has been delivering more clean energy options and lower costs than had been predicted even a few years ago. So this is good news. Let's start there. Who would like to kick off with some reflections? Load More
Christiana: [00:03:53] Well, I just, before we go into the report itself, just two facts for context. The first is that the IEA, the International Energy Agency, had headquartered in Paris, is not just any body. It is the maximum authority on energy in the world. It has the best, most capable staff for analysing energy trends and predictions. And I use that word very, very cautiously because it's trends that they're actually looking at. But that's my second point. And the second point is that traditionally, whatever trend is identified by the IEA is actually, interpreted as though that were the only possible way forward. And so there's sort of a.

Tom: [00:05:00] Interpreted by governments, right? So it's very important. It feeds into policy very quickly.

Christiana: [00:05:03] Interpreted by governments and by companies. Actually both, I would say. So there is a self-fulfilling prophecy effect very often about the IEA's results and their publications. What is fascinating is that over the years that we have been attentive to this, the IEA has had to constantly revise and revise and revise every single year. They have had to revise what they had said would be possible on renewable energies because they had constantly under estimated what we have talked about ad nauseum on this podcast, which is the impact of not linear but rather exponential growth of renewables. And so this is actually quite a fascinating report that comes out and many, many congratulations and kudos to the IEA because it is now evident that they are beginning to incorporate the impacts of exponential growth into their trend setting or into their trend.

Tom: [00:06:13] It's a huge deal.

Christiana: [00:06:14] It's a huge deal. It's a huge deal. And as I say, because there is a self-fulfilling prophecy effect about the IEA trends that they put out, this actually, this report is not just representative of the reality that we have, but actually will help to further the speed and scale of deployment of renewable energies because of the self-fulfilling prophecy effect of the IEA.

Tom: [00:06:48] Yeah, very nice. Okay. Thank you for that additional background. Paul, do you want to jump in and tell us what you thought?

Paul: [00:06:54] Well, it's only me and you left, Tom. But yes, I kind of agree completely with what you said Christiana.

Tom: [00:07:00] Well Christiana hasn't actually discussed the report yet. She's discussed the importance of it. She's kept her powder dry for the next bit.

Paul: [00:07:05] She made the most important point, though, which is the one that I also would have made that there's something about the forecast that brings forth reality. A couple of things I picked up on, four particular headline goals for governments that came out. One of them is tripling of renewables capacity. And actually that's really doable. You know that we're on trend for that. That's completely predictable technology. And that second one was doubling of energy efficiency improvement rates. Super low risk, really really predictable. 

Tom: [00:07:33] Those sound familiar, aren't they the ones, weren't they in the G20 statement recently?

Paul: [00:07:38] Well, I mean, you know, the OECD supports the IEA and everyone's in line with this. There's also talk about emissions reductions and plans for heavy industry. But I think what I particularly want to also kind of emphasize is something very exciting, which is the IEA said that stringent and effective policies under its projections would spur clean energy deployment and cut fossil fuel demand by more than 25% by 2030 and by 80% by 2050. So this is incredibly exciting. It shows how everything fits together. And what, of course, is a little bit interesting is, yes, indeed, the UK Prime Minister kind of went against that. And actually Fatih Birol, the executive director or the executive secretary of the IEA, specifically picked out Sunak, saying that this, you know, this was the wrong thing to do. Advanced economies should take the lead and increase ambition rather than reducing it. But, I mean, the last thing that I particularly wanted to note is the degree to which Kingsmill Bond actually, in his analysis, pointed out that a key part of this is when you put together the cost of the the CapEx of renewables and the reduced OpEx, it ends up being cheaper to save the planet than to cook it. So we've got to have a little bit of capital investment up front, which is not difficult to organize because we've got so many incredibly rich people who've got nothing to invest their money in. It's good news all around. I was totally heartened by this report because, as Christiana said, big grown up voice of OECD government says it's cheaper and better to save the world than destroy it, and we're on track to do so. Doesn't mean it's in the bag, but it means we can be optimistic if we focus.

Tom: [00:09:24] And I think to just pick up on that and what you said as well, Christiana, this is a forecast, right. I mean, they do include elements, as you said, Paul, about the fact that governments can and should make certain commitments. And there is an interesting corollary between what's in here and what was in the G20 a couple of weeks ago. So we should maybe talk about that. But this is a forecast, which is why it's so optimistic. It's not a call for commitments from governments. And, you know, they say we have the tools we need. We're going to be tripling renewables, doubling efficiency gains, speeding up electrification, cutting methane. And this is all going to be driven by gain, not pain. That climate change is a motivator for change, has been joined by economics, energy security, jobs, industrial leadership. That's really the encouraging thing, that this is happening by the evolution of our economy and we now just need to speed it up. Christiana.

Christiana: [00:10:13] Yeah, and again, going to Kingsmill, who does such brilliant analytical work of original analytical work, I mean, he just puts it so beautifully and so briefly. And he says, you know, this IEA report tells us that we do have enough grids. That is really amazing that we're actually building enough grids to be able to pick up all of the generation that is coming. He also says, so we have the technology, we have the land, we have, we're going to produce more jobs. We're going to be much more efficient in our energy generation. We will be using less amount of natural resources because the renewable economy is two thirds less intensive in its uses of minerals than fossil fuels, which is a very important point. But, side by side by that, let me just, you know, put a little damper here in this enthusiasm. And that is the, fundamentally the bottom line of this is, as you well put it, Tom, that 1.5 is still achievable. I just want to say that scientists and, just had a conversation with Johan Rockström about this. Scientists are now pretty sure that stabilizing at 1.5 is still achievable while they're also very concerned that we may overshoot 1.5 within the next few decades a couple of times. So that we will overshoot and then because of the advance of technology, be able to come back into safe zone of 1.5. What is unknown is, is there a cascading effect going to be unleashed because of that overshoot that will happen two times, three times, we don't know, over the next few decades what is the cascading effect on all of the other planetary systems that are there. And Johan reminds us that six of the nine have actually already been breached, six of the nine boundaries. So, you know, in all our enthusiasm for this, I also think that we have to understand we are really barely squeezing under the door here. The door has been closing on us for a long time and we are now barely, barely squeezing. This news from the IEA says, yes, we can still squeeze in, but it's a squeeze, okay. This is not like we have opened the door the way we would have liked to and the way we should have done.

Tom: [00:13:23] It's a great point, Christiana. And when you say the cascading effect, what you mean there and I've you know, this is obviously the thing that really alarms climate scientists is that we will precipitate feedback loops in the natural system that then mean that it spins out of control rather than being able to bring it back into equilibrium. That is so concerning. And you're absolutely right. I mean, we're right on the cusp of those. Paul, do you want to come in?

Christiana: [00:13:43] Yeah, that some, sorry, that some eco systems will just tip over, right. And the one that is very easy to understand is what happens if the Amazon, you know, reaches its maximum and tips over into a savanna and that is then irreversible. Or what happens and here's the big piece that they're concerned about, what happens if the oceans are no longer able to absorb as much heat as they have been absorbing. What happens if they reach their saturation point. And God help us if they, you know, reach that saturation point and actually begin to exude heat. I mean.

Tom: [00:14:23] And, my favourite analogy on climate change, sorry Paul, is, is that it's not like sitting in a bath of slowly warming water. It's like being trapped in a cage with a wild tiger that right now happens to be sleeping. And us warming the climate is us working out how hard we're going to kick the tiger. And of course, if we kick it hard enough and it wakes up, it doesn't really matter what we do after that. So that's what you're describing there.

Christiana: [00:14:44] Exactly.

Paul: [00:14:45] I will take credit for that beautiful analogy. I mean, think in terms of your home insurance. What are the chances of your home burning down. They're like 1 in 1000, but you buy home insurance. What are the chances like, would you get on an airplane that was like 5050 going to crash. Well, friends, we're on the airplane. Every time you hear the, you know, the fire exits are there and there and health and safety and, you know, testing this and checking for that. And oh, we've got to kind of, you know, be careful about these loose cables and there might be a problem. And we've got two complete worlds of risk. We've got one world of old school risk that we're very good at managing and one, you know, total, almost complete blind spot to new school risk. And by the way, the naysayers are still mucking about with this IEA report. OPEC, the organization of oil producing and exporting countries, the OPEC cartel accused the IEA of stoking volatility and scaring off investors. Uh, yes. Yes. Scaring off investors. Good idea. Oil and gas. Bad thing to invest in, renewable energy good thing to invest in. So we're still in this sort of crazy contest. And without going into the details, the fossil fuel industry continued to be all over democratic institutions, not least powering Trump and a whole bunch of state attorneys general in the US to sort of throw sand in the cogs of this renewable revolution. So everything to play for. But the IEA have done a good job, I think.

Christiana: [00:16:09] Very good job. Very, very good job.

Tom: [00:16:11] No, for sure. Now, just before we go to Amy, as last week, we're helping each other find different podcasts that we think are really consequential. And I want to quickly tell you about a show from our friends over at the Conversation Weekly that we've really enjoyed listening to. It's hosted by Gemma Ware, who talks to researchers who spend their whole lives studying a particular topic. And it always leaves us feeling a lot smarter. You can learn about the fascinating discoveries they're using to make sense of the world and the big questions they're still trying to answer. It goes deep on everything from the science of cloud seeding, to a deep dive that is fascinating into the history of the Israel-Palestine peace process. New episodes come out every Thursday. Find it by searching for the Conversation Weekly wherever you get your podcasts.

Christiana: [00:16:52] But speaking of scaring investors, which is a good idea. Tom, who do we have on the podcast today?

Tom: [00:17:00] Well, not only scaring investors, but also of fossil fuel takeovers of democratic institutions. I mean, there is nobody better to speak about this than Amy Westervelt. Now, this is a very exciting moment for us. We've wanted Amy Westervelt on this podcast for a very long time. I think if there's anyone in this world who knows a lot more about climate podcasting than the three of us is the legendary Amy Westervelt. She's an award winning investigative journalist, I'm sure known to most listeners, if not all, author and executive producer of an independent podcast production company called Critical Frequency. Drilled is the podcast for which they are best known. And no doubt most listeners will know that podcast. But there are many others. They actually have 24 shows that come from Critical Frequency. So let us bring on Amy Westervelt.

Paul: [00:17:44] A great journalist and a great entrepreneur.

Christiana: [00:17:51] So do we have to repeat. Hi, Amy. We're so excited to have you.

Amy Westervelt: [00:17:57] Hello.

Christiana: [00:17:59] We had a little chat before we all started recording. So now we are doing Hi, Hi, Hi. Hellos again. But Amy, so you are in the northern part of our northern province in Costa Rica in Guanacaste. And why did you move to the wild and wonderful Costa Rica?

Amy Westervelt: [00:18:16] Yes, yes. Lots of reasons. I started thinking about leaving the US when they started arresting journalists covering protests.

Tom: [00:18:26] Oh my God.

Amy Westervelt: [00:18:27] I was like.

Christiana: [00:18:27] Are you serious?

Amy Westervelt: [00:18:29] This seems like a red flag, you know.

Christiana: [00:18:32] Wow.

Amy Westervelt: [00:18:34] So that was like in 2016.

Paul: [00:18:36] You're the first US political refugee we've interviewed, but I bet you're not the last.

Amy Westervelt: [00:18:41] Yeah, it's wild. 

Tom: [00:18:42] It's also, we've found another benefit of Costa Rica, a haven for journalists from the US who are being oppressed. 

Amy Westervelt: [00:18:47] Yes, yeah. So my husband's from Scotland. So we thought about moving there. And then, you know, he was like, I haven't like lived there for 20 years. If we go to Scotland, like we can't leave, you know. So, so we were thinking about Mexico because I have family there and the kids speak Spanish because they've been going to like a Spanish immersion school. So we thought, Oh, maybe Mexico. But then people I knew in Mexico were like, I don't know if now's the right time. This was like in 2020. So, or no, I guess 2021. So then I was like, well, I've always wanted to live in Costa Rica because they have like, you guys have all the policies that we all talk about being, you know, what we need in the world. And it'd be cool to live somewhere that's actually got those policies in place. So that was actually a big part of the choice to move here was to to see it up close and like, you know, live somewhere that, kind of has the, the viewpoint that I think a lot of climate advocates say is necessary for doing things on this.

Tom: [00:19:57] Wow.

Christiana: [00:19:58] Very cool.

Amy Westervelt: [00:19:58] So yeah.

Paul: [00:19:59] Very sobering amongst us to actually see you as a refugee from you know encroaching danger.

Amy Westervelt: [00:20:09] From the U.S. Yeah, I mean it's honestly, it's like okay so in at least where I live, I don't have an address. It's not that easy to get mail. And you know, I don't have like a physical address. It's sort of like.

Christiana: [00:20:20] Tell me about it. 

Amy Westervelt: [00:20:21] 200 metres southwest of the school, you know.

Christiana: [00:20:23] No, no, no, it's better than that Amy. It's 500m west from the old tree that doesn't exist anymore.

Amy Westervelt: [00:20:31] Yes, yes, yes. So like.

Paul: [00:20:35] You remember where it was, yeah.

Amy Westervelt: [00:20:35] On the one hand, I'm like, well, it's a little bit inconvenient, but I'm also like, feel safe. It feels very safe. It's very hard to find me now.

Christiana: [00:20:43] Good, good, good, good. That's great, fantastic. Well Amy, we have, before you came on, we already introduced you with a word that we don't usually use, but that you have definitely earned, which is legendary climate podcaster. How's that?

Amy Westervelt: [00:21:02] Wow.

Christiana: [00:21:02] So now we, so now you have to tell us the legend. Like, how did you get to be a climate podcaster? How did you how did you get there?

Amy Westervelt: [00:21:11] Oh, so I, I was a print journalist for a long time. And then maybe ten ish years ago, I was driving around listening to NPR and having like FOMO. You know, I was like, I wish I could be an NPR journalist. And then I thought, well, I could probably, you know, at least do something for my local member station. So I sent an email to my local station, which was in Reno, Nevada, at the time because I was living near Lake Tahoe and subject line, 'would you like an overaged intern?', and they were like, actually.

Christiana: [00:21:47] I love that subject line.

Amy Westervelt: [00:21:51] You know, they were like, well, you know, it's  actually like it usually takes us a lot longer to train people on the reporting side than on, you know, how to use the audio equipment. So sure, come on in. So I volunteered for a month and kind of learned the basics of audio recording and editing and all that stuff. And then they hired me as a staff reporter. So I was a community reporter in Reno, Nevada, which is a wild place to be reporting. And it was great because I had never done actually local reporting. I had always done more national and international. So it was cool to be a community reporter. And then I also learned that every, you know, news segment on NPR is like hours worth of tape that gets whittled down to, you know, three minutes of facts and that's it. So the whole time, because I'd always been a climate reporter, I was like, I really want to do a narrative podcast on climate change. Why isn't there like a serial for climate change. And so I was looking for a story that would kind of be a good framework for that. And I got assigned to cover one of the first cases in this round of climate liability cases in San Francisco. So this was the city of San Francisco, and the city of Oakland had sued the top 30 oil companies for their role in delaying action.

Paul: [00:23:16] Absolutely brilliant lawsuit that actually is very close to the one recently launched by the State of California, so it was the kind of precursor of that.

Amy Westervelt: [00:23:22] Very similar. 

Christiana: [00:23:24] Now up to the State of California.

Amy Westervelt: [00:23:25] That's right, that's right. Yeah. So at that level, the judge in that case had asked.

Christiana: [00:23:30] What was the year of that, Amy? What was the year of that one?

Amy Westervelt: [00:23:33] This was 2017.

Christiana: [00:23:34] When did it start?

Amy Westervelt: [00:23:35] 2017, yeah. And the judge had required, had requested a climate science tutorial, which was so interesting. This guy was really. 

Christiana: [00:23:46] That's amazing.

Amy Westervelt: [00:23:47] It was so interesting. And he was kind of like he was an eccentric guy. Like he'd done a similar thing in other cases, like he taught himself how to code to oversee a case about software, and he had done all these things. So with climate, he's like, I need a climate science tutorial. I want everyone to come, you know, bring the scientists and tell me who knew what and when. And so I was in the courtroom for that and it was I was like, oh this is it. I'm going to do a true crime podcast about climate change because like all the characters were there was like the wacky judge and the scientists and the activists with their Exxon knew t-shirts and the oil company lawyers who were like out of central casting. I caught them joking about like the crappy hotel that the environmental lawyers were staying in. And I was like, these guys. So, it was really.

Christiana: [00:24:34] No way.

Paul: [00:24:37] I would rather stay in like a more trashy hotel and like, not spend the rest of my life burning in hell, but the rest of eternity, I should say. But sorry.

Amy Westervelt: [00:24:44] I know they were really it was like very, you know, I don't know, twirling the mustache kind of action.

Paul: [00:24:53] Was it pantomime, it's kind of like, behind you, boo's, evil, evil people.

Amy Westervelt: [00:24:58] Actually, one of the attorneys, the attorney for Chevron, who is the guy that kind of speaks for most of the oil companies in most of these cases. I recognized him because I'd been covering these cases already. And I went up to him in line and I was like, oh hi, Mr Boutros, you know, I'm a journalist, I'd love to speak to you, blah, blah, blah. And he goes, I'm not, that's not me and ran away.

Christiana: [00:25:26] Oh, my God. And you said, I am a powerful woman.

Amy Westervelt: [00:25:29] I know. That was, it was so funny. So anyway, that was the genesis of and I pitched that idea to like every podcast company and they all said, oh there's no audience. There's not enough audience for a climate show to justify a narrative podcast because they take a lot of time and money and whatever. And I was convinced. So I just made it by myself at night in my car while my kids were sleeping. And then. 

Tom: [00:25:55] Amazing. 

Amy Westervelt: [00:25:55] Released it and we got like, we got a million listeners in our first season. So I was like, There is an audience and now we're going to keep doing it.

Paul: [00:26:05] So just exactly who told you that the biggest issue in human history is like too much of a niche for anyone to listen to.

Amy Westervelt: [00:26:11] And also that like no one wants storytelling around it was really, I was like, I just don't think you're right at all.

Christiana: [00:26:18] Storytelling, you've said the magical word.

Amy Westervelt: [00:26:22] Yeah.

Tom: [00:26:23] And Amy, how, I mean, you've taken that so far now with Drilled and all your other, you know, you've done more than anyone else to sort of demonstrate that we can bake storytelling and bring people into this issue.

Amy Westervelt: [00:26:34] Yeah.

Tom: [00:26:34] How do you, what kind of score do you give us as the climate movement telling this story? Are we expanding the field of people interested in this? Are we just preaching to the choir? How have we done so far, would you say?

Amy Westervelt: [00:26:48] I think it's improved a lot in the last few years. Like I remember, I mean, honestly, when I first was reporting and doing print stories on this topic, I mean, it was like it had to either be science or policy or tech, and that was it. Like there was no room for, and in some ways that was driven by this real fear, I think, from scientists and people that had really caught in on like the early years of climate denial of like, you know, if we don't just stick to the facts, then they're going to be able to, you know, say that we're making things up or we're exaggerating or whatever. Now, I mean, I feel like there's so many, you know, personal essays and a million books and all different, you know, kind of shades of storytelling that just really kind of weren't allowed even five years ago. 

Christiana: [00:27:45] What does not allowed mean Amy? What does not allowed mean?

Amy Westervelt: [00:27:48] Oh, just like wouldn't get assigned, you know, like you wouldn't, I wouldn't have dreamed of even pitching an essay on, like how motherhood intersects with climate change, for example, like seven, six years ago, it was like no one would have wanted that. Now it's like, yeah, those are there's a bunch of them. Or even like the conversation around climate anxiety and climate grief, that really didn't exist, at least from what I saw, you know, until a few years ago, maybe five years ago, we started to really see it in larger mainstream publications. So I think that's helping. And I do feel like I mean, yeah, some of it's preaching to the choir, but I think there's a huge, you know, I don't know, I feel like everyone talks about this in the climate space, the movable middle, you know, where it's like we're not trying to reach climate deniers and get them to understand that the science is valid or whatever. But I think it's good that people are starting to kind of leave that because they're really, they're very vocal, but they're really like such a small sliver of the spectrum of, you know, the population. It's like less than 10%, you know. So I don't. 

Christiana: [00:29:05] If that, if that.

Amy Westervelt: [00:29:05] For a really long time. If that, yeah. But they are the ones that will like call the radio station and call the TV station and send journalists, you know, nasty emails and all of that stuff. So I think there's this sense I know there's a sense in the media that there's way more of them than there actually is because they are the people that, you know, the station or the newspaper or whatever will hear from. So, but I do think that I'm seeing people kind of leave that to the side. Like we don't need to convince this small sliver of people, let's work on the people that know it's an issue and you know that like just need an on ramp of some kind. Because I think the biggest problem for a lot of people is just overwhelm, you know, like they just are like, where do I even plug in here.

Paul: [00:29:59] Amy, let me ask you a difficult question. Let me ask you a difficult question. And it comes from a place of profound respect and admiration.

Amy Westervelt: [00:30:09] Okay.

Christiana: [00:30:10] Oh, boy. Get ready, get ready.

Paul: [00:30:14] Be afraid, be afraid, okay. So the good news in inverted commas is it's a nightmare out there. Infinity money from corporations is essentially taking over the whole political system. And we've got states attorneys general who look a lot like oil company lobbyists. We've got Donald Trump speaking endlessly about oil and gas and cookstoves and how windmills don't work and electric cars don't work, you know, in the big debates. So I'd say it's the Democratic Party versus the fossil fuel party, right. And that's what we're doing now. And it's scary. And we don't even know if that fossil money comes from outside the US or inside the US. It kind of doesn't matter. Politics being corrupted is politics being corrupted. My challenge to you is you have detailed this in meticulous, well, just listen, listeners listen to Drilled honestly, if it doesn't scare you, you haven't got fear in you. But what do we do, and I know it's a glib question, but I mean, there's all of our listeners and, you know, how do you respond to that corruption of our political process. How do you, how do we take your meticulous documentation, internalize it and then do do something?

Amy Westervelt: [00:31:32] Yeah, I mean, that's a tough it's a tough question. And there is I think honestly, this is another part of the storytelling thing, there like, people really want there to be one answer to that question. And there just isn't. You know, there's so many different answers. There's like at the local level, I mean, even at the school board level, you're seeing this play out, right, in terms of like what kinds of textbooks get taught in schools and what's allowed to be spoken about in schools and all of that. And like at every level up from there, there's corruption to be rooted out. There's, you know, the fake I mean, the windmill thing is fascinating to me because I think that it's kind of a good example of this thing that I think the climate movement does a lot, where it just likes to pretend that more complicated aspects of issues don't exist. You know, like, let's pretend racism doesn't exist and then we don't have to engage with it. Let's pretend there is no downside to an industrial wind farm right next to a, you know, in a sort of like an area that people have lived in for a long time that's been very peaceful and, you know, uninterrupted and whatever.

Amy Westervelt: [00:32:41] It's like, I don't know why, like why we can't just engage with these issues and have the messy conversations. I actually think it tends to engender more, I don't know, sort of faith in, in the climate policies if people like actually engage with the messy stuff. So there's that. I think it's like, look, don't be afraid to have these conversations like, you know, we can why don't we talk about, yeah actually like some industrial scale renewable projects might be. 

Christiana: [00:33:12] Have an impact. 

Amy Westervelt: [00:33:13] Quite quite inconvenient for some people. Let's talk about that. People have you know humans are humans, right. Like they have emotional responses to things they're not, it's not just like, oh, well, be practical, you know, this is a good for everybody else. Also, like in the US in particular, in many cases we are asking people to just overnight shift from hyper individualism, which has always been encouraged as a value in the US to giving a crap about the common good. That is like a pretty big shift and there's no. 

Tom: [00:33:47] The muscle memory isn't there.

Paul: [00:33:48] Have you ever heard that the Statue of Liberty on the East Coast and the Statue of Responsibility on the West Coast and you can't have just one statue.

Amy Westervelt: [00:33:55] Yeah, I mean, it's really like, look, we're going to have to actually think through some pretty big cultural shifts as well. And I know nobody wants to do that. And everybody says, we'll get to that later. There's no time for that. But look, we're going to bake in problematic solutions if we don't deal with all of that stuff roiling underneath as well. So I think that's another thing is like, look, part of the reason that we have corruption kind of all the way through is that a lot of these sort of core values have not been questioned. There's this real sense in the US at least, which I do feel like drives a lot of this stuff that like whatever you have to do to make a dollar is okay because it's just business. And like that doesn't even get questioned as a as just a value that we have, you know. So in that context, I hear all the time, well, the oil companies are just, you know, and it's true actually in many contexts for sure in the US legal context, the, you know, the law actually discourages companies from behaving in a way that is about anything other than profit, you know, so there's like these real structural changes, I think, too, that need to be made to make it possible for companies to operate in good faith without being diametrically opposed to what the law says they need to be doing for shareholders. That's a long answer, there's more, there's more things but those are a few.

Tom: [00:35:35] It's a good answer, it's a good answer.

Paul: [00:35:36] No, no, it's great to like hold the, hold the ethics at the heart of it. And yeah, I'm sure fiduciary duty isn't that you have to destroy the world, but apparently it gets interpreted that way.

Amy Westervelt: [00:35:45] That's how it gets interpreted. Yeah. Is that if you're doing anything other than, you know, putting money in shareholders pockets, that you are being irresponsible. That needs to change in a really big way, yeah.

Christiana: [00:35:56] So Amy, I would love to get into a messy conversation here.

Amy Westervelt: [00:36:01] Yeah, let's do it.

Christiana: [00:36:04] You have reacted to an article that I published recently in Al-Jazeera in which I said that I had sadly run out of patience with the oil companies and that I perhaps more, but I'm not sure if that's accurate, but I certainly feel that I had expanded my tolerance space for them for a long time and that I had run out of patience. And I would love to hear how that article impacted you, how did you react?

Amy Westervelt: [00:36:49] I thought it was really brave for you to say that, because I feel like a lot of people would not. You know, a lot of people won't say, look, I thought this for a while now I have new information and I think differently. I feel like modeling that in public is like extremely necessary and great. And I think the thing I wrote was like, okay, great, now we need to go the next step and like, you know, kick these guys out of the COP process. If they're not actually if they're if sort of we know they're not operating in good faith, if we know that their intention is really to hijack the process and to shift things towards whatever makes them money, then why do we keep letting them have that influence, especially with something like the, the UN process. It feels like it should be possible to boot them out. I don't know, I mean, they've kind of been in there since the beginning, so it might be tough. But I also feel like, look, we've tried for 30 plus years to have them at the table to try to, to come up with solutions that they can be a part of and at every turn, we have evidence of them not operating in good faith. So why don't we try it without them and see if there's any progress to be had. I don't, like I mostly I actually I had this conversation with John Kerry recently where I was, he was saying, well, we don't have time to, you know, let the perfect be the enemy of the good. And they need to if they're not, you know, on board, then no solution is going to happen. And I was kind of like, I understand why you want them to be on board. I just don't understand why you think that they will be, because we don't actually have any evidence of that.

Paul: [00:38:49] Interesting distinction.

Amy Westervelt: [00:38:51] That's the thing that I'm kind of like, all right, let's you know, we've given it a really good shot for a long time, this idea that they will you know, come along and that there's some, you know, market based solution that will be appealing enough to them that they will want to do it. But I just think it's like I think it's time to just tell them what they need to do. And if they don't like it, too bad, you know. So yeah, that was my reaction to your piece was like, okay, cool. Now I want to know what you're suggesting we do about these guys. What do we do with or to them?

Christiana: [00:39:27] So, so maybe, you know, I wasn't clear in the article because my article had nothing to do with the negotiations. Nothing whatsoever. Because a couple of things. First, because it is only countries that actually are at the proverbial negotiation table, of which there is no table. But anyway, it is only countries that are there. And so the only way that you get to the negotiation is if a country that is sovereign puts you on their team and says, you go negotiate for me. And you know, and they put people who don't work for the government on there. The good news is sometimes they put young people or scientists on. The bad news is sometimes they put, you know, ugly people on there. But that is a sovereign decision that we cannot affect. The second piece, why to me, it's like it's who goes to the negotiations is not the issue for me is because there is a very clear geographic actually boundary between the space in which countries operate and the space in which everybody else who's not a government representative operates. And those who have the wrong colour badge cannot get in to the negotiations anyway. And so for me, it's like if they're there, they're not there. And the third reason, Amy, is it's not about who is there. I mean, in if we were still, you know, in, I don't know, telegraphic world, then I would say, okay. But honestly, with the kinds of communications that we have, you can definitely communicate into that space. Even if you are sitting 300,000km away. Right. It has nothing to do with your presence there.

Amy Westervelt: [00:41:18] Yeah.

Christiana: [00:41:18] So I was not talking about the negotiations whatsoever. I was talking about something that I think is way much more important, way, way, way more important than being at the negotiations, being at the COP or not. And that is, what the hell are they doing with their profits. That's the piece that irks me no end. Okay. Because yes, I have been holding space for these people who have extraordinary engineering skills that they could be deploying, for example, to offshore wind. Who knows more about, you know, oil rigs in the ocean than these characters. Why are they not redeploying those engineering skills, for example, to offshore wind. Who knows more about these than these characters, about the conditions of a desert. Why are they not deploying that onto concentrated solar power, right. So that's my piece. It has nothing to do with the negotiations. It is, look dudes, you have to change your business model and the fact that they have more depth of engineering skills than any other industry by far, the fact that they have deepest pockets than any other industry by far.

Christiana: [00:42:37] Those two things to me mean huge responsibility. And so I have been in conversation with them for years about dudes use those two levers that you have to change your business model because you know that what you're doing does not have business continuity. They know that.

Amy Westervelt: [00:42:56] They know, yeah.

Christiana: [00:42:58] So and they were before, you know, the crazy Ukraine invasion, many of them certainly the Europeans were already beginning to turn the curve. And then this crazy war meant that they had all of these all of these profits. And me, I thought, oh, fantastic. Finally, they're going to have so much capital sitting under their pillows, they're now going to put that capital into the change in business model. Wrong. They actually dug their heels and they started to your point, they started to pay their shareholders more. They started to buy shares back. They started to be even more obstreperous about policy, delayed policy, delayed policy. The COP, honestly, is such a tiny, weensy little thing compared to what the hell they ought to be doing. So that unacceptable, completely unacceptable.

Amy Westervelt: [00:43:55] So actually, this is great because I'm curious what you think can be done about it. The thing that I always like, I'll ask you the question that you guys just asked me. The thing that always, like kind of makes me feel overwhelmed.

Christiana: [00:44:06] Hold on, Amy, are we on your podcast or on our podcast?

Amy Westervelt: [00:44:11] I know, can I ask you, is it okay?

Paul: [00:44:12] This is a theatrical device, it's called the play within the play. This is the interview within the interview.

Amy Westervelt: [00:44:17] I can't help myself. No, but it's so like to me, the thing that always is, is like so overwhelming about this problem is that these companies are more powerful than any one government because they have their tentacles into so many governments, right. So what do we do?

Paul: [00:44:34] For so many, like 100 years, you know.

Amy Westervelt: [00:44:35] For like a hundred years. Yeah, exactly. It's like they have been pulling the strings for multiple governments around the world. So then how do you like, do you try to get those governments all to agree like, oh, actually we need to push back on these guys or what do you do about it?

Christiana: [00:44:53] Well, that is that recognition that they are so powerful right beyond their pockets and the engineering that they have. But the fact that they have that power and the fact that, honestly, our economic structures around the world are so highly carbonized, they are so highly carbonized because it's not just about what we're putting into our power plants. It's decisions in the financial sector, decisions in the policy. Right. So many things because we have diluted ourselves over the past hundred years that this is the only way to go. And so carbon has actually made itself insipient into our entire economic structure. And so that is why, Amy, I was holding space because they are so powerful, because their tentacles have such reach. And if they were agents of change and if they stood up to the responsibility, the historical responsibility that they have. Then we actually would be much farther ahead than we are now. That's why I was holding space for them. But no, they chose not to do it.

Amy Westervelt: [00:46:10] Yeah.

Paul: [00:46:11] But you ask what to do, Amy. I mean, I think that, you know, when we got rid of tobacco, we didn't have, like, you know, so many congress people or senators or state attorneys general that were owned by the tobacco industry. You know, when we got rid of asbestos, we didn't have half the Congress being funded by the asbestos companies. We actually have a situation now because I'm fearful I'm going to die in a basement with my fingernails being pulled out by some populist that was put there by the fossil fuel industry. I actually think democracy is just like wavering here.

Amy Westervelt: [00:46:41] Yeah, yeah, I agree. I agree. And it's like I said, it's not just in the US. It's like how many MPs do they own in the UK, Australia. Oh my God, Canada. You know, the European Union. So like now they're doing their whole thing right now is like we're saving Africa from poverty. So they're, you know.

Tom: [00:47:05] Yeah, it's terrible, it's terrible.

Christiana: [00:47:07] I mean, honestly, I, you know, that to me is so unforgivable. That lie. That lie is so unforgivable. If you could, why the hell haven't you done it in the past 50 years is my point

Amy Westervelt: [00:47:20] Why does Nigeria have the world's worst energy access is like, I'm just like.

Tom: [00:47:26] Right, let's just go down that road again. Yeah. Amy, can I ask you because, I mean, this is such an interesting question and you've been so on the forefront of this and the tool you've used amongst many is accountability, making more transparent the crimes of this industry and how they're preventing us from moving forward. Do you feel like that is leading to the outcome that you wanted? I mean, none of this stuff is as fast as we wanted it to be, but how do we enable that to, and I realize we've kept you for far longer than we said we would.

Amy Westervelt: [00:47:55] No no, that's fine.

Tom: [00:47:55] But I have to ask you this question, but do you feel like that tool of accountability.

Christiana: [00:47:59] Wait wait Tom, she's on Costa Rican time, you know, so it's like expansive.

Tom: [00:48:07] Is that, is that working I suppose is the question?

Amy Westervelt: [00:48:09] Is accountability working? I think, you know, yes and no. I feel like the a lot of the reporting and the research that's gone into sort of ferreting out what they were doing and what they knew and when. And all of that stuff has become the evidentiary base for a lot of lawsuits which are starting to succeed in the courts. So I do think that as they have to be paying out more settlements and just legal fees in general, that, you know, the sort of the same kind of death by a thousand cuts thing that happened with tobacco could happen with oil and gas. I do think there's a point at which they would be like, okay, fine, regulate us. You know, in fact, they've already hinted at that. There's been a couple of very weak proposals. But still, the fact that they're sort of like, okay, well, what if we let you guys put a price on carbon that's X, you know, those kinds of.

Paul: [00:49:09] What if we let you guys.

Amy Westervelt: [00:49:10] I mean, it's amazing that framing. I know, I know. But then the other thing is what I hear from a lot of social scientists who sort of study massive scale change is that it takes a certain number of people like out in the streets protesting. And I do feel like that is really starting to increase.

Christiana: [00:49:30] 3.5% of the population Amy, that's the magical number.

Amy Westervelt: [00:49:32] Right, that's what they say, yeah.

Christiana: [00:49:35] 3.5% of any population. And then we have major change.

Amy Westervelt: [00:49:40] That's right. So I do think that.

Paul: [00:49:42] Provided they are not shot or sent to prison.

Amy Westervelt: [00:49:44] Right, that's right. Yeah. But actually that weirdly I have a piece coming out about this that like in a very unsettling way the authoritarian crackdown on protest is often the thing that tips the scales to more and more people getting out because they see, you know, police being violent with people and they go, whoa, that's not right. I don't even know if I agree with the cause, but I don't like that. So that is actually often the tipping point.

Christiana: [00:50:15] Sadly, but true.

Amy Westervelt: [00:50:16] It's sad and very concerning but true. And I do think that the accountability piece is a major driver of that. There's just some new research coming out this week that the number one and we've seen this in a couple of different studies now the number one driver of action, the thing that gets people out into the streets is anger, you know, that sort of like righteous indignation. This isn't cool. We have to do something. And unfortunately, I also think that all of the extreme weather events are starting to really play into it, too, because historically. Right. Like the most effective movements, are driven by people who are directly experiencing the impact. And now, you know, most of the people like I think at the New York march, it was like 80% of people had a personal experience with extreme heat, flooding, all of these things. And that's only going to increase over time. So on that side, I think maybe too, but yeah.

Tom: [00:51:18] No, and the recent work to do weather attribution, right. So we can quickly say, you know, you're experiencing flooding or fires New York that's because of climate change. And to bring that in to day to day experience. I mean and we agree with you. I mean, we're in this because we're outraged about what's happening. It's not happening fast enough. And, you know, as time goes on, we were just talking about this before we came on, just the impacts. We're edging closer and closer to those systemic tipping points that are so alarming. Amy, I think sadly, we're going to have to ask you our closing question unless either of my co-hosts have a.

Christiana: [00:51:50] But can I just ask a question that actually closes the loop to where we started this conversation. 

Amy Westervelt: [00:51:57] Yes.

Christiana: [00:51:57] And that is to the storytelling piece, Amy, because I did want to hear from you whether your sense is that journalists, journalism journalists have actually moved away from this need to present climate change of 50%, you know, whatever all the lies and then 50%. 

Amy Westervelt: [00:52:19] The false equivalence thing.

Christiana: [00:52:21] Yeah. And my sense is that thank God that is gone. There is very, very little need except for, you know, in a couple of holdouts that we understand are political, but that is no longer there. And there is much more willingness to come out to say, yes, climate is a reality and yes, and secondly, to Tom's point about attribution, much more willingness to actually attribute what we're seeing to the amplifying effect of climate change. And that's really important in terms of storytelling. Would you agree with that trend?

Amy Westervelt: [00:53:02] I do. I do agree with that. My my one caveat, well, two caveats. One, I would like to see the media take some accountability for that. Hasn't happened yet. Has not happened. Have not seen the.

Christiana: [00:53:15] What would that mean?

Amy Westervelt: [00:53:16] I mean, The New York Times could stop making oil companies ads for them. That would be a good place to start, as could the Washington Post and Bloomberg and all these other outlets that are still, you know, doing that. Like I just watched a Bloomberg advertorial that they made for Exxon completely overstating the capacity of carbon capture and storage to solve the climate crisis today.

Paul: [00:53:42] Amy, do you have any idea how much those oil companies are paying? I mean, surely the business managers at Bloomberg and The New York Times must see the clear wisdom in taking all that enormous amount of money.

Amy Westervelt: [00:53:50] Yeah, I'm sure. But like they, yeah, especially with Bloomberg, given Mike Bloomberg's stance, it is shocking.

Paul: [00:53:59] Given Mike Bloomberg stance, exactly.

Amy Westervelt: [00:54:00] It is shocking to me that they are still doing that like you know I think it's not great for the New York Times or the Washington Post either but that one in particular I'm just like. 

Paul: [00:54:11] Isn't it like Bezos and Bloomberg, like if there are two people in the world who can afford to get a little bit less revenue from oil company advertising, it's those two.

Amy Westervelt: [00:54:19] Absolutely, it's those guys. Yeah. So I would like to see that. And also, you know, something from the editorial board saying, hey, we peddled false equivalence for a really long time and that was the wrong call, actually like that would be great. But they, no there's no I actually have written stuff for The Washington Post before where they sort of like surgically remove examples that are things that they have also done in the past. And it's unfortunate that they can't just be like, yeah, you know what, there were some bad calls made in the 80s and 90s. I don't think that would, you know, embarrass them overly much today to just admit and and explain why they've moved on from that. The other thing is that I do.

Christiana: [00:55:01] To your point, it makes it even better, right. It makes it stronger because there is more trust then.

Amy Westervelt: [00:55:07] That's right. Exactly. Exactly.

Christiana: [00:55:09] To your point. Previous point.

Amy Westervelt: [00:55:11] Yeah. Yeah. And then the other thing is, I feel like the new flavor of false equivalence is the enormous amount of faith and credibility that a lot of journalists give to the executives of oil companies. So it's like always, they might not they're not going to go to like a climate denier for the anti-science point, but they always go to the API or, you know, Darren Woods or whoever to get the business point that's supposedly the counter act to the environmental thing, which I think needs to be examined. I think that, like the media in general, is not as up as we should be on just how much the PR industry has shaped the conversation. 

Paul: [00:55:57] Think tanks, think tanks.

Amy Westervelt: [00:55:58] The think tanks too exactly yeah the think tank say the stuff that the companies want to have out there but aren't you know, don't want to have in their own mouths and then the PR firms help shape the positive narrative around know well we create jobs and you know all of these.

Paul: [00:56:15] I learned this listening to the Drilled podcast by the way.

Amy Westervelt: [00:56:18] Yeah. Yeah. So yeah I do. But it has 100% this whole thing of like some people think climate change is real, but some people don't. That is gone. And thank goodness.

Tom: [00:56:30] It took a while though, didn't it, to get to that point.

Amy Westervelt: [00:56:32] It took a while.

Tom: [00:56:33] Amy, it's such a pleasure to talk to you. Thank you. You've really delved into all of these complexities and issues.

Amy Westervelt: [00:56:38] Yeah, thanks for having me.

Tom: [00:56:39] We're such huge fans of you. We've got to ask you before you go, as we do with all of our guests, can you please tell us something you're outraged by and something you're optimistic about as you look at the world from your lovely perch in Costa Rica?

Amy Westervelt: [00:56:50] Yes, outrage. I'll go with the PR industry. I think it's outrageous that they are still as powerful as they are and as unseen as they are. They have not really had any kind of accountability whatsoever for really like shaping how people think about everything. And then optimism. I find it in community resilience. So like any kind of community action is, usually gives me a lot of optimism for the future because, you know, you have seen like I'll give the example of the folks in Cancer Alley defeating the Formosa plant. You know, it's still technically could be built at some point, but it's looking increasingly unlikely that this massive petrochemical plant is going to be built. And that's 100% from community organizing people in that community that didn't want that plant there and found every way possible to fight it. And it worked. And that's the kind of like community solidarity that not only works to defeat the fossil fuel industry, but is also what we need to survive climate change. So I like to look at that stuff. Yeah.

Christiana: [00:58:00] That's awesome. Amy, thank you so much. Thank you for joining us. And I have to say, if you're ever down south in the peninsula, in the vicinity of Akira Kawano, look it up on the map. My home is your home.

Amy Westervelt: [00:58:15] Amazing. Thank you so much. Thank you for having me in your beautiful country. It's great.

Christiana: [00:58:21] We're delighted.

Paul: [00:58:22] Thank you for your amazing work Amy.

Tom: [00:58:23] So great to meet you and chat.

Christiana: [00:58:23] Thank you so much, really wonderful. 

Amy Westervelt: [00:58:25] Thank you, I love the podcast, too, by the way. I listen to it all the time.

Paul: [00:58:30] Oh, thank you Amy.

Tom: [00:58:32] How wonderful to finally get to talk to Amy Westervelt. She's been such an incredible leader and storytelling and, you know, just all the things that we have such respect for, she's really moving in an incredible way. What did you both leave the discussion with?

Paul: [00:58:52] Well, first of all, I'm kind of ice goes down my spine that she says they're arresting journalists in the USA and she's a political refugee because I had held out that the United States was something of a beacon. But I've read some of the reporting and I don't blame her for being afraid, but I hope this will just bring more people out on the streets or whatever it is, or stop this kind of persecution of people trying to protect the national security of the United States from, you know, from climate change. I was really struck by her specifically complimenting you, Christiana. And I was listening very carefully to what she said. She said you modelled somebody saying that they got new information and had changed their minds publicly. And it shocked me. First of all, I mean, I admire you for that as well. But how rare that is and her phrase that you modelled that I thought was a really it went quite deeply with me. And then, yeah, I mean, a final observation is, is not so much about Amy, but really just about the genius of podcasting. This is radio meets Google. Think about that for a minute. We have got we are sitting on something and it makes me made me very proud to be a podcaster, to see the the genius of how she slices something and does so well.

Christiana: [01:00:10] Yeah, yeah, no really admirable work. And I was really struck by. I wish I knew what that, what that is in English when someone has a really, really tough spine. What do you call that?

Paul: [01:00:29] Strong backbone, she's got backbone.

Christiana: [01:00:32] Yeah, doesn't translate well. But it is when you meet someone and you know that there is, you know, there is a strong line there that I very much respect and admire and especially because she combines it with this very passionate but somehow jovial. I mean, there's I can't quite find the words for the combination that she brings of this strength and yet the capacity to communicate it in ways that are not threatening to those who listen in ways that are engaging. Right. Because there's the strength, the fortitude there. And she manages to twist it around and bring us in to her world. And I think that is fantastic, because sometimes that strength and that fortitude can be very, distancing. And you go like, Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa.

Paul: [01:01:39] It's a lightness to her. There's a lightness to her.

Christiana: [01:01:41] Thank you. That's the word. It's a beautiful combination of amazing iron fortitude and a lightness that makes it very engaging. I thought that was brilliant. 

Tom: [01:01:53] Yeah, and makes, as you say, it's strategic, right. Because if someone is, you need to have light and shade. And what she has chosen is the her path will be about calling people out. It'll be about demonstrating where people are disingenuous, where they are, you know, trying to prevent progress and combining that with a way of being. And you get this from her podcast as well, that is joyful, that is looking for fun, actually. It makes it more effective because it enables you to go further in that, Yeah, I agree with you. I thought she was I thought she was great. I mean, I think that, you know, it also really reminds me of how and we've talked about this before, different strategies in the world are largely personality based and where you find energy and engagement. And I see her as a true ally and we might see things differently. We might be more about how do we focus on where the positive is happening, how do we elevate that. And she might be calling out those who are preventing change. And I like that we can. 

Christiana: [01:02:45] Thank heavens.

Tom: [01:02:46] Thank heavens, right.

Christiana: [01:02:46] We need all of those approaches.

Tom: [01:02:48] We need all of those approaches. And we need to find a way to sort of and I think this is really happening now to respect those different ways of being and to be friends and to connect. And I think that that's really impressive.

Christiana: [01:02:58] I would say, more than that, just pushing on that point. Very important point, Tom, to be grateful for the fact that, yes, that there are so many different approaches and people so passionately following their approach. Honestly, if you know, if we couldn't do that for each other. Right. We we would lose the impact. So it is, I am I'm actually very grateful for her absolute, you know, firm commitment to accountability. God bless her.

Tom: [01:03:28] And I also really appreciated, Christiana, that you made this point because I often find myself making this sort of in the world, which is people get really frustrated with who's at the climate talks and being having been in the positions that we were in. And, you know, they get frustrated for the right reasons, you know, because they want the right outcome. But you and I, having sat inside that process, that is not the lever there doesn't actually move. You know, you keep pulling the levers of change and it actually nothing happens. It's somewhere else. And it's a bit of a sort of, it can, it can end up consuming a lot of time and energy and outrage.

Paul: [01:04:00] You made the point really well Christiana. 

Tom: [01:04:02] Yeah, you did, I think it was, yeah.

Christiana: [01:04:04] All of that energy is better focused on the more fundamental issues.

Tom: [01:04:09] Where the levers connect to change. Exactly. Right. Okay. Any further points from either of you before we go to, the aforementioned Nick Nuttall.

Paul: [01:04:20] Nothing should stand before Nick Nuttall. He is a force alone in the world and time and space. 

Christiana: [01:04:25] Get ready, get ready, here we go. 

Tom: [01:04:27] All right. We have introduced him already. But not only one, but two legends on the podcast this week. Nick Nuttall artist, musician, former Director of Communications for the UNFCCC.

Paul: [01:04:38] Huge personality in the world.

Tom: [01:04:40] Here he comes.

Paul: [01:04:40] And what's the music?

Tom: [01:04:42] And the music is called Just Because Some Bad Wind Blows. You could also look at it on YouTube. Bye, friends.

Paul: [01:04:49] See you.

Christiana: [01:04:49] Bye.


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