We get it. You care about the climate crisis—but sometimes thinking about it is just too overwhelming. Well, we’re here to help with that. Host Dan Kwartler unpacks the problems and solutions behind big systemic issues in bite-sized episodes. You’ll find out which bag is best for the planet, imagine our world without humans, and follow the international journey of the very shirt on your back. Yes, we’re going to talk about the bleak stuff—it’s a crisis after all—but we’ll also share little ways you can make changes in your daily life, in your towns and cities, and at your workplaces to help change climate change. Ultimately we’re aiming for some HOPE through a focus on solutions, instead of just, you know, tumbling towards inevitable doom.
You can also get involved by joining Countdown, TED’s global initiative to accelerate solutions to the climate crisis in collaboration with Future Stewards. Find out more at countdown.ted.com
Why It's "Not Too Late" with Rebecca Solnit and Thelma Young Lutunatabua
28:16Not Too Late, written by Rebecca Solnit and Thelma Young Lutunatabua, offers us the tools to tackle this current wave of disinformation, and provides tangible stories of hope. On this episode of Outrage + Optimism, hear how the project aims to invite newcomers to the climate movement, as well as providing climate facts and encouragement for people who are already engaged but weary. Listening to these two incredible women speak about Not Too Late, which ‘rang a bell of truth’ for hosts Tom Rivett-Carnac, Christiana Figueres, and Paul Dickinson. Outrage + Optimism is another member of the TED Audio Collective. For more episodes that help you understand that you DO have the power to solve this, follow the podcast wherever you're listening to this.
The future of the food ecosystem -- and the power of your plate | Ndidi Okonkwo Nwuneli
11:24Many people across the world don't have access to healthy food -- while in other places tons of food go to waste. Social entrepreneur Ndidi Okonkwo Nwuneli thinks we can take bold steps to fix this problem. She lays out what it would take to build a more equitable, sustainable food system that nourishes all people and asks us to widen our perspectives before eating our next meal.
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The tragedy of air pollution -- and an urgent demand for clean air | Rosamund Adoo-Kissi-Debrah
7:49"Breathing clean air is every child's human right," says grassroots campaigner Rosamund Adoo-Kissi-Debrah, sharing the heartbreaking story of her seven-year-old daughter, Ella Roberta, whose asthma was triggered to a fatal point by air pollution. Now, Adoo-Kissi-Debrah is on a mission to raise awareness about the harmful effects of unsafe air on our health and the planet. In this moving talk, she details why governments have an urgent responsibility to take action on air pollution -- and ensure that all children have a chance to live full and healthy lives.
How wind energy could power Earth ... 18 times over | Dan Jørgensen
10:57Over the last two decades, the wind power industry has grown at a dizzying pace. (Fun fact: a single rotation from one of the world's most powerful wind turbines can generate enough electricity to charge more than 1,400 cell phones.) Building off this exponential growth, Denmark's climate minister Dan Jørgensen lays out his plan to end the country's oil industry by 2050 and transition to a fossil-free future powered by wind energy.
How to provide cooling for everyone -- without warming the planet | Rachel Kyte
11:03"The way we cool things down is heating the planet even more," says sustainable development expert Rachel Kyte -- and the solutions go well beyond just fixing air-conditioning. She identifies four major areas with transformative solutions -- from roofs painted with bright white paint to solar control glass to more efficient cold chains for vaccines -- that can be implemented in fair and sustainable ways. Learn more about what a community designed for cool could look like.
Woolly pigs, high tech and other ingenious ways to take carbon out of the air | Gabrielle Walker
12:03What do woolly pigs have to do with climate change? They're part of a vital, ingenious and evolving strategy to take carbon out of the sky and store it safely -- in trees, soils, the ocean, buildings, rocks and deep underground. Every carbon removal approach takes some combination of natural resources, human ingenuity and technology, says climate thinker Gabrielle Walker. If we get the mix right, we can clean up the environmental mess we've made, reverse the processes behind climate change and give nature a chance to heal. "What goes up must now come down," she says.
How to realistically decarbonize the oil and gas industry | Bjørn Otto Sverdrup
13:31Bjørn Otto Sverdrup leads the Oil and Gas Climate Initiative (OGCI), which gathers the CEOs of twelve of the world's largest oil and gas companies around an ambitious goal: to get one of the sectors contributing most to climate change to drastically lower their own carbon emissions. He describes a possible path for the industry to pivot to net-zero operations, reimagining the role it could play in helping decarbonize the economy and changing how we consume energy -- and he calls for setting a price on carbon. (Followed by a Q&A with Countdown cofounder Lindsay Levin)
Language shouldn't be the barrier to climate action | Sophia Kianni
7:27Most scientific literature is written only in English, creating an alarming knowledge gap for the 75 percent of the world who don't speak it. That's a big problem for climate change -- because it's hard to take action on something you don't understand. With Climate Cardinals, an international youth-led nonprofit that's working to make the climate movement more accessible, activist and social entrepreneur Sophia Kianni is furthering the global transfer of knowledge by translating and sourcing crucial climate resources into more than 100 languages. A barrier-breaking talk about the collective effort we'll need to protect the future of our planet.
The dreams and details of a green shipping revolution | Jim Hagemann Snabe
11:37As chairman of the world's largest maritime shipping company, Jim Hagemann Snabe thinks a lot about how goods get where they need to go and the impact their journey has on the planet. Leading the effort to decarbonize shipping by 2050, he shares a plan to convert green electricity into green liquid fuel to power vessels in a process called "power-to-X" -- and urges global leaders to join the voyage towards an innovative, sustainable and fast-approaching future.
A vision of sustainable housing for all of humanity | Vishaan Chakrabarti
10:58By 2100, the UN estimates that the world's population will grow to just over 11 billion people. Architect Vishaan Chakrabarti wants us to start thinking about how we'll house all these people -- and how new construction can fight climate change rather than make it worse. In this visionary talk, Chakrabarti proposes a "Goldilocks" solution to sustainable housing that exists in the sweet spot between single-family homes and towering skyscrapers.