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Outrage + Optimism

Feb 9, 2023

Welcome to another episode of Outrage + Optimism, where we examine issues at the forefront of the climate crisis, interview change-makers, and transform our anger into productive dialogue about building a sustainable future.

In this episode, co-hosts Christiana Figueres, Tom Rivett-Carnac, and Paul Dickinson discuss US President Joe Biden’s State of the Union address, a possible green race to the top across the G7 nations, and how to identify positive economic tipping points with Kelly Levin, Co-Director of the Systems Change Lab and Chief of Science, Data and Systems Change for the Bezos Earth Fund, which provides grants to support the climate and nature. 

The team agrees that United States politics, as witnessed through the lens of the annual State of the Union speech, seems like a slugfest, with jabs from both sides but no winner. Still, they admire Biden’s multiple references to climate change as a global security issue affecting vulnerable people一rather than more political drama. Also worth discussing: Could Biden have a chance at winning reelection in 2024? The trio weighs in.

Next, Kelly Levin discusses the Breakthrough Effect, a groundbreaking report on how to trigger a cascade of tipping points to accelerate the net zero transition. She outlines the three super leverage points that could prompt the “tipping of the tipping points” to bring about planet-saving climate action. Electric vehicles (EVs), green ammonia, and alternative proteins play a role.

The co-hosts contend this is a welcome concept一that if we can trigger the right leverage points, we can cause a global cascade of positive climate change. From there, we can go from a linear to exponential transformation. It’s almost a relief to think it’s possible, especially in the face of grinding, slow change that seemingly won’t be fast enough to save the planet. You won’t want to miss this fascinating conversation!

Finally, alt-pop singer-songwriter Panteon closes the episode with the beautiful acoustic track “Archipelago.”


See you next week!



To learn more about our planet’s climate emergency and how you can transform outrage into optimistic action subscribe to the podcast here.


Kelly Levin, Co-Director Systems Change Lab

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Check out Panteon’s new single - ‘Anyone Someone’

Yvonne from Panteon is in Encanto!


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