49 episodes

Stories on why we find it so hard to save our own planet, and how we might change that.

The Climate Question BBC

    • Science
    • 4.7 • 66 Ratings

Stories on why we find it so hard to save our own planet, and how we might change that.

    Putin and the planet

    Putin and the planet

    Russia is the world’s fourth-largest emitter of greenhouse gasses. Any talk of changing that needs to focus on President Vladimir Putin. Under his leadership, Russia has become a fossil fuel powerhouse. Since he took office in 2000, Russian oil production has risen by 70%. Today, the state is dependent on its revenues. Four in every ten dollars Moscow spends comes from fossil fuels. So the idea that Russia needs to shift away from fossil fuels to prevent the worst effects of climate change strikes at the very heart of Mr Putin’s power.

    But Russia is already suffering more than most from the effects of climate change. Arctic temperatures are rising faster than the global average, forests the size of countries are going up in smoke. Two thirds of the country’s permafrost - permanently frozen ground - has roads, homes, schools, oil and pipelines and even nuclear reactors are built on it. And the permafrost is starting to melt.
    Putin’s latest national security document for the first time mentions climate change as a risk. But can he do what is necessary to prevent things from getting worse?

    Contributors -
    Angelina Davydova - Environmental Journalist
    Chris Miller - Director of the Foreign Policy Research Institute’s Eurasia Program
    Vladimir Chuprov - Director of the Energy Program, Greenpeace Russia

    Presenters: Neal Razzell and Kate Lamble
    Reporter - Olga Dobrovidova
    Producer: Jordan Dunbar

    • 27 min
    Why can't we stop gas flaring?

    Why can't we stop gas flaring?

    There are thought to be over 10,000 gas flares around the world that contribute to global warming by emitting tonnes of carbon dioxide and methane.

    Flared gas is a by-product of oil extraction and is frequently used as a method of eliminating unwanted gasses in countries such as Albania, Algeria, Libya, Iraq, Russia and Nigeria.

    Yet, year after year deadlines set to stop the practice are missed.

    The oil industry says better infrastructure is needed to stop flaring and some of the world’s largest producers of oil have committed to ending flaring by 2030. What will it take for that to happen?

    Presenters Neal Razzell and Kate Lamble are joined by:

    Bjørn Otto Sverdrup, chair, Oil and Gas Climate Initiative
    Mark Davis, CEO of Capterio.
    Sharon Wilson, senior field advocate, Earthworks

    Producer: Darin Graham
    Reporter: Fyneface Dumnamene
    Series producer: Rosamund Jones
    Editor: Emma Rippon
    Sound engineer: Tom Brignell

    • 27 min
    What made us doubt climate change?

    What made us doubt climate change?

    Recent research has shown that oil companies knew about the threat of climate change decades ago. Yet over forty years, it has been revealed that they contributed millions of dollars to think tanks and campaigns to spread doubt and misinformation about climate change – its existence, the extent of the problem, and its cause.

    Across the US, these revelations have sparked a wave of lawsuits against the fossil fuel industry, demanding accountability for climate change – and now a US congressional committee has started to investigate. Executives from the world’s biggest oil companies and trade groups have been called to testify before US lawmakers in October this year, in an inquiry modelled on the tobacco hearings of the 1990s, which paved the way for far tougher nicotine regulations.

    This week, The Climate Question looks over the evidence behind these allegations – and asks whether Big Oil might finally be facing a reckoning for its role in the climate crisis.

    Presenters: Neal Razzell and Phoebe Keane
    Producer: Zoe Gelber
    Series Editor: Ros Jones
    Editor: Emma Rippon

    • 26 min
    What homes to build in a climate-changed world?

    What homes to build in a climate-changed world?

    Heatwaves and floods are becoming more frequent around the world. But are the homes being built today taking that into account?

    The Climate Question considers the impact that living in a building threatened by rising water or constructed so that you bake in the heat has. And it asks why planners and developers in many countries have been so reluctant to adapt. Where are lessons being learnt and will other places follow their lead?

    • 27 min
    What role has the media played in the climate crisis?

    What role has the media played in the climate crisis?

    For decades, around the world, climate change coverage has been thin. Guests discuss why the media in petrol states, in particular, have struggled to tell that story. Science illiteracy in newsrooms has led to a mixture of climate silence and false balance in print and on air. But, even when the science has not been contested, the way the crisis has been reported may have caused audiences to turn away. Can climate coverage learn lessons from how that other hugely consequential science story of our time – the pandemic - has been told?
    Contributors :
    Mark Herstsgaard, co-founder Covering Climate Now
    Marianna Poberezhskaya, associate professor Nottingham Trent University
    Kris De Meyer, neuroscientist Kings College London
    Wolfgang Blau, The Reuters Institute

    Presenter: Graihagh Jackson
    Producer: Rosamund Jones
    Editor: Emma Rippon

    • 27 min
    When will countries stop exploring for oil?

    When will countries stop exploring for oil?

    If we are to ensure that there’s no more than a 1.5 degrees centigrade increase in global warming, the International Energy Agency recently stated that oil exploration must stop. A few countries have heeded that warning but the vast majority have not. The Climate Question hears from two nations – one already rich from oil, the other poor and yet to benefit from recent oil finds – about why they are continuing to explore. But, even for those who are following the IEA’s advice, will stopping be straightforward or might hurdles still lie in wait?

    Fatih Birol, Executive Director of the International Energy Agency
    Bård Lahn, Research Fellow at the Center for International Climate Research, Norway
    Catherine Higham, Climate Change Laws of the World Coordinator, London School of Economics

    Presenters: Jordan Dunbar & Gaia Vince
    Reporter: Kiana Wilburg
    Producers: Darin Graham & Soila Apparicio
    Series producer: Rosamund Jones
    Editor: Emma Rippon

    • 27 min

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5
66 Ratings

66 Ratings

Rtufton ,

Everyone needs this in their life!

Thank you for shining a light onto a really important issue and one that we all need to be talking about. Really complex issues explained in terms a layman like myself can understand. Thank you

Kyzr86 ,

Great show

Very informative.

Shan norwich ,

Really nice but no need to dumb it down so much

Excellent topics chosen that go some way to account for the global nature of climate change. Informative but it would be nice if the hosts didn’t try so hard to make it relatable/informal and dumb everything down. Have some faith in your listeners :) we just want the facts, and you don’t need to shy away from detailed interviews or complex topics.

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