Is the UK losing its leadership status on net zero?
Alasdair speaks to Dr. Doug Parr, Greenpeace UK's Chief Scientist, about the UK's place on the global stage, how its net zero policies are progressing, and how the country is taking dangerous risks with nuclear and aviation.
Climate diplomacy expert Dhanasree Jayaram tells Bertie about the environmental risks that could threaten Antarctica before then, including illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing, militarisation, bioprospecting, increased tourism, and resource extraction.
Harvard scholar Rosetta Elkin explains how large-scale tree planting in otherwise treeless environments rarely makes ecological sense. Historically, these projects have been used as instruments of colonial forestry, as a way of staking claim to land.
Are biofuels worse for the climate than petrol and jet fuel?
John DeCicco, Professor Emeritus at University of Michigan, has been studying transport emissions & biofuels for decades. Alasdair asked him about the alarming findings of his research: liquid biofuels could be worse for the climate than fossil fuels.
Alasdair spoke Finlay Asher, founder of Safe Landing, about the reasons technological and market-based solutions to aviation emissions are not going to get us to net-zero, and what the sector should be doing instead.
What does Australia’s new Labor government mean for climate politics?
On 23 May 2022, the Australian Labor Party entered government for the first time since 2013, under the leadership of Prime Minister Anthony Albanese.
Alasdair spoke to Dr. Marija Taflaga, Director of the Australian National University's Center for the Study of Australian Politics, to talk about shifting climate politics in the county, and what the new government could mean for the green transition.
Can palm oil be ethical and sustainable in Indonesia?
Lauren talks to Tania Li, Professor of Anthropology at the University of Toronto, about the sustainability of the oil that's in 50% of supermarket food products - and the issues with labour and land rights in Indonesia's palm oil industry.
Has environmental policy contributed to the crisis in Sri Lanka?
Bertie speaks to Melani Gunathilaka, a Sri Lankan climate activist who has become a leading voice in the Gotagogama protests. They discussed the role of climate policy in the cascading crises and corruption allegations that have recently plagued the country.
Is a utopian future still possible with climate breakdown?
Bertie talks to Drew Pendergrass, coauthor of Half Earth Socialism, recently published by Verso books. They discuss geoengineering, population scaremongering, climate colonialism, and the big question for many on the left: will we be able to mitigate the climate crisis under capitalism?
How has climate change affected Lebanon? With Assaad Razzouk
Lauren talks to Assaad Razzouk, host of the Angry Clean Energy Guy podcast and British Lebanese clean energy entrepreneur. They talk about the recent elections in Lebanon, systemic problems with climate finance, and the ways a clean energy transition could help struggling economies.
Daniel Klier is CEO of ESG Book, and was previously HSBC's first Head of Sustainability, and Chair of the Bank of England Climate Risk Working Group. Alasdair spoke to him about how banks are confronting climate mitigation, and what needs to be done for banks and the finance industry to meet net zero targets.
How are assumptions around science and migration undermining climate policy? With Sonia Shah
Award winning author and journalist Sonia Shah talks to Alasdair about her book, The Next Great Migration: The Beauty and Terror of Life on the Move. She talks about what we can learn about human migration from wildlife, why climate migration should be seen as an adaptation strategy rather than a coming crisis, and the dangers of elitism in scholarly science.
Did you know that methane is more than 25 times more potent than CO2 in terms of trapping heat in the atmosphere? In this episode we look at reducing methane emissions without mandating veganism. Our guests Anatoli Smirnov and Sabina Assan are researchers at Ember, international data analysts for clean energy solutions in the power sector.
What are the issues threatening oceans in the Pacific? With Dame Meg Taylor DBE
The day before 80 countries meet in Palau to discuss ocean governance, Bertie talked to Dame Meg Taylor DBE about the changes the Pacific Elders' Voice are campaigning for, including pollution of plastics and nuclear waste, illegal and unsustainable fishing, and loss and damage.
Roxane Andersen explains why peatlands are the “superheroes” of carbon storage
Bertie talked to renowned peat expert Professor Roxane Andersen about the Flow Country in Scotland, her research on restoration, monitoring, and peatland fires, and more generally about why peatlands are so important for climate mitigation.
How Europe funds illegal Russian logging, and why timber sanctions matter – with Earthsight’s Sam Lawson
With the invasion of Ukraine ongoing, Bertie talks to Sam Lawson, Director of investigative NGO Earthsight, following a public letter from 120 NGOs calling for a boycott on Russian and Belarusian wood.
Can BECCS really provide negative emissions? NRDC’s senior scientist Sami Yassa presents new research
Sami Yassa, senior scientist at the US based NGO the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and their scientific lead on forests and forest biomass, sets out NRDC research on the use of Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS) which looks at whether it can really produce negative emissions.
Phasing out fossil fuels: is real progress being made? OCI’s Romain Ioualalen explains.
Romain Ioulalalen from NGO Oil Change International (OCI) tells Alasdair where we are on the global phase out of fossil fuels, what the current challenges are, how COP26 was significant and what political changes to expect in the next few years on oil and gas.
Ending Fossil Fuels: Why Net Zero is Not Enough with Holly Jean Buck
Is the net zero approach to climate mitigation working, or is it an unrealistic framework that does more to help corporations than the planet?
Bertie talks to Professor Holly Jean Buck, from the University at Buffalo.
Lauren asks Mark Bould about his new book 'The Anthropocene Unconscious'.
They discuss whether fiction goes far enough in representing narratives of climate crisis, ranging from Jane Austen’s ‘Mansfield Park’ to the 'Fast & Furious' franchise.
Edward Struzik on the urgent need to restore our peatlands
Bertie talks with veteran climate journalist Edward Struzik about his new book, Swamplands: tundra beavers, quaking bogs, and the improbable world of peat. They talk COP, burning peat for energy, the process of rewetting peatland, and Edward gives a cultural & historical background to bogs, fens & marshes.
Is Drax UK’s single biggest CO2 emitter? Think-tank Ember give us the answer
Alasdair talks to Phil MacDonald, Chief Operating Officer of think-tank Ember, about the the energy think-tank's latest analysis which places Drax as the UK's single biggest emitter of carbon dioxide in the UK and among the top 5 emitters in Europe.
In this episode Alasdair MacEwen talks to Lina Burnelius of Protect the Forest Sweden about the Swedish forestry model and the threat that industry poses to biodiversity and the survival of ancient Forests.
Chief Operating Officer of energy think tank Ember, Phil MacDonald, talks to Alasdair about the new challenges of decarbonising the global energy sector and what has been achieved so far in Europe in the UK.
Edward and Alasdair speak to Sasha Stashwick, climate expert at the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), on how the Biden Administration is gearing up to tackle climate change and issues with the use of biomass for tackling climate goals.
Mike Norton on “transformative change” and science policy
Prof Michael Norton speaks about the need to understand what 'transformative change' actually is, the gap between science and policy urgency on environmental boundaries and on the flawed concept of GDP.
Doug Parr speaks about how British climate policy has changed and what might happen after the pandemic and greenhouse gas removal technologies, what 'negative emissions' are and the risks of rising 'institutional greenwash' in climate policy and business.