Hot & Bothered Podcast #3: How Tipping Points Actually Work—And Why It’s Not Over Yet, with Michael Mann

Hot & Bothered Podcast #3: How Tipping Points Actually Work—And Why It’s Not Over Yet, with Michael Mann

Leading climate scientist Michael Mann explains what “runaway” climate change, feedback mechanisms, and tipping points actually mean—and why there’s still hope.

The "hockey stick" graph (courtesy michaelmann.net)

In the third episode of Hot & Bothered, co-host Daniel Aldana Cohen has an extended conversation with leading climate scientist Michael Mann about what “runaway” climate change, feedback mechanisms, and tipping points actually mean. Mann is Distinguished Professor of Atmospheric Science at Penn State University and the director of the Penn State Earth System Science Center.

We ask Mann: is there One Big Threshold that we’ve already crossed (or are about to cross)? Is a methane bomb in the permafrost about to blow up civilization? Or, as Mann suggests, might the scariest stories told by some climate activists be as harmful as the fossil fuel industry’s efforts to silence climate scientists? And yes, Daniel makes a “shades of gray” reference as we examine the lingering uncertainties of climate science.

After hearing about the (shrinking) grounds for hope, Kate sends us a quick report from the People’s Summit in Chicago. There, she speaks briefly to filmmaker and anti-fracking activist Josh Fox. And in closing, we find out what Kate bought Daniel as a graduation gift when he finally finished his PhD.

Listeners: tweet your outrage, consternation, curiosity, and uncertainties to #HotBotheredClimate. And stay tuned for episode four next month. We’ll be talking with grassroots activist Ken Henshaw about petro-politics from above and resistance from below in Nigeria.

Check out the full Hot & Bothered archive here. Hot & Bothered is produced by Colin Kinniburgh. Music: Mercurias Meet Victor Rice, “Carregar (Instrumental),” courtesy of Total Running Time.



Belabored

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Climate scientist Michael Mann

Michael Mann’s content-packed home page at Penn State

Forthcoming book (with Tom Toles): The Madhouse Effect: How Climate Denial is Threatening Our Planet, Destroying Our Politics, and Driving Us Crazy (Fall 2016)

The People’s Summit and Josh Fox

Kate: The Political Convention Where Bernie’s Revolution Reigns (Rolling Stone)

Josh Fox’s latest film: How To Let Go of the World and Love All the Things Climate Can’t Change


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