10 episodes

The climate crisis is the defining challenge of our lifetimes. Its scale defies comprehension, and conceals its true nature – not as one gigantic issue, but as many. Even those of us who accept the science and urgency of the climate crisis can struggle to act on our own knowledge and values. No matter who we are, our minds are subject to the Dragons of Climate Inaction: 36 different species of rationalizations – stories we tell ourselves consciously and subconsciously, shaping all of our decisions.In this series we explore the psychology of climate inaction, and prove that another story is possible. In each chapter of this 8-part series, we’ll uncover a different genus of dragon. Along the way, we’ll explore the art of turning carbon into rock, face mortality in the heart of the Amazon, and rekindle our connection with the Earth. With the help of each of our guests, we’ll challenge the different types of climate inaction, and discuss how we can scale up to meet this moment, together.

Scales of Change was produced by Future Ecologies, with support from the University of Victoria.

Scales of Change is proud to be a 2021 Webby Honoree in Science & Education

Scales of Change Future Ecologies

    • Science
    • 4.9 • 19 Ratings

The climate crisis is the defining challenge of our lifetimes. Its scale defies comprehension, and conceals its true nature – not as one gigantic issue, but as many. Even those of us who accept the science and urgency of the climate crisis can struggle to act on our own knowledge and values. No matter who we are, our minds are subject to the Dragons of Climate Inaction: 36 different species of rationalizations – stories we tell ourselves consciously and subconsciously, shaping all of our decisions.In this series we explore the psychology of climate inaction, and prove that another story is possible. In each chapter of this 8-part series, we’ll uncover a different genus of dragon. Along the way, we’ll explore the art of turning carbon into rock, face mortality in the heart of the Amazon, and rekindle our connection with the Earth. With the help of each of our guests, we’ll challenge the different types of climate inaction, and discuss how we can scale up to meet this moment, together.

Scales of Change was produced by Future Ecologies, with support from the University of Victoria.

Scales of Change is proud to be a 2021 Webby Honoree in Science & Education

    Series Supercut

    Series Supercut

    Scales of Change is a podcast mini-series, and a field guide to the "Dragons of Climate Inaction".
    The Dragons are 36 different species of rationalizations – stories we tell ourselves (consciously and subconsciously) that shape all of our decisions. With the help of each of our guests, we’ll challenge the different types of climate inaction, and discuss how we can scale up to meet this moment together.
    Scales of Change is proud to be a 2021 Webby Honoree in Science and Education.
    Listen to Scales of Change on your podcast app, or at https://www.futureecologies.net/dragons (futureecologies.net/dragons)
    – – –
    Voices in order of appearance:
    Adam Huggins, Mendel Skulski, and Professor Robert Gifford [Series hosts]
    Catriona Sandilands [Ch. 3]
    Kate Moran [Ch. 2]
    Elin Kelsey [Ch. 1 and Ch. 7]
    Reuven Sussman [Ch. 4]
    Christine Kormos [Ch. 4]
    Nicholas de Pencier [Ch. 1]
    Gloria Ushigua [Ch. 5]
    kQwa’st’not Charlene George [Introduction and Ch. 7]

    • 2 min
    Chapter 7: A Form of Life

    Chapter 7: A Form of Life

    This is our final chapter, and our last genus of Dragon: Immobilis – the dragons of Limited Behaviour. This genus contains only two species: Immobilis signum, or the Dragon of Tokenism, and Immobilis jevonsii, or the Rebound Effect. They are among the most pernicious dragons, especially for people who already care deeply about the climate.
    As we unpack this small but important genus, we discover how they are tied to the global movement to divest from fossil fuels. Once again we find ourselves with the themes that have run throughout our entire series: the power and flexibility of language and narrative.
    Visit https://www.futureecologies.net/dragons (futureecologies.net/dragons) to learn more about the Dragons of Inaction (including their names, descriptions, and phylogeny), and find all of our citations, guest speakers, and musicians.

    • 44 min
    Chapter 6: Relatives of the Deep

    Chapter 6: Relatives of the Deep

    In our sixth genus, we dive deep into the Dragons of Sunk Cost – the investments that work against our climate interests.
    Some of these may simply be financial, but they may also be emotional: our goals and aspirations, our patterns of behaviour, and our attachments to the places around us.
    In this episode, we focus our attention on Place Attachment, as we tag along with the https://www.sgicommunityresources.ca/climate-action-project/ (ṮEṮÁĆES Climate Action Project): a W̱SÁNEĆ-led eco-cultural revitalization project.
    To learn more about the Dragons of Climate Inaction (+ musical credits, citations, and more) visit https://www.futureecologies.net/dragons (futureecologies.net/dragons)

    • 55 min
    Chapter 5: Force Majeure

    Chapter 5: Force Majeure

    Our fifth genus includes the Dragons of Perceived Risk: functional, temporal, financial, social, and physical. These dragons are at the root of all fears – steering our decisions in a continuous assessment of risk versus reward.
    When it comes to climate change, the risks are global, but distributed unequally. In this chapter, we explore what physical risk can mean to the people dedicated to the health of the planet, as we follow one woman’s journey to becoming a force of nature.
    To learn more about the Dragons of Climate Inaction (+ musical credits, citations, and more) visit https://www.futureecologies.net/dragons (futureecologies.net/dragons)

    • 34 min
    Chapter 4: Driving Decisions

    Chapter 4: Driving Decisions

    The Dragons of Discredence are agents of mistrust – the species of this genus are responsible for climate deniers, contrarians, and conspiracy theorists. But it’s not only the fringe that suffers from the dragons of discredence. They can act in subtle ways on all of us: casting doubt on well-intentioned policy, and dissuading us from aligning our self-interest with the interests of our environment. To tip the scales, we have to prove that there’s plenty of honey to go around.
    Many of the Dragons of Inaction are insights for individuals – leading change from the bottom up. In this chapter, we discuss the other side of the equation: how governments and policy makers can design programs for climate change that people actually want.
    To learn more about the Dragons of Climate Inaction (+ musical credits, citations, and more) visit http://futureecologies.net/dragons (futureecologies.net/dragons)

    • 32 min
    Chapter 3: Writing on the Wall

    Chapter 3: Writing on the Wall

    Our third genus contains the Dragons of Social Comparison and Social Norms.
    Every aspect of who we are is mediated by these Dragons: we adjust to the norms of our communities – the people we interact with, and the people we consider to be our peers around the world. As with everything, these norms are subject to change. Their flexibility is based on our collective willingness to share, and to listen.
    When it comes to the climate crisis, community conversations – in whatever form they may take – are integral to our ability to adapt.
    To learn more about the Dragons of Climate Inaction (+ musical credits, citations, and more) visit http://futureecologies.net/dragons (futureecologies.net/dragons)
    – – – – –
    Please note that this chapter does not contain direct reference to the ongoing protest movement against white supremacy and police brutality. However, we believe the lessons of this episode are as relevant to this cause as they are to issues of climate change.

    • 38 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
19 Ratings

19 Ratings

Sam Eleni ,

5 stars!

Educational and thought provoking - but in a very approachable way! I love the idea of “dragons.” I really appreciate the flow and music selection as well. Incredibly well done!

daughter one ,

Scales of Change

Thank you for the thoughtful, provocative offer to journey into new worlds, new ideas, and new learning. The production is richly textured, the music terrific and the script engrossing.

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