Climate Confident

Climate Tech for a Sustainable Future: Insights from Richard Delevan

March 29, 2023 Tom Raftery / Richard Delevan Season 1 Episode 114
Climate Confident
Climate Tech for a Sustainable Future: Insights from Richard Delevan
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Show Notes Transcript

Hey everyone, welcome to another episode of the Climate Confident podcast! I'm your host Tom Raftery, and I'm thrilled to have Richard Delevan with me today. Richard is a communications consultant who works with energy and climate tech companies, and he was kind enough to join me to talk about the IPCC's latest synthesis report.

In this episode, we dive into the findings of the IPCC's report and what they mean for our future. We also discussed the role of technology and innovation in addressing the climate crisis and the importance of political leadership in driving change.

Richard shared his insights on the current state of the energy transition and how companies and individuals can play a role in creating a more sustainable future. He also touched on the importance of storytelling in driving change and how leaders can help frame the narrative around climate action.

Overall, this was a fascinating conversation, and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. Don't forget to follow Richard on LinkedIn and subscribe to his "Week in Climate Tech" newsletter for more updates and insights on the energy transition.

And remember, you can check out the video version of this podcast on YouTube at https://youtu.be/lLzxC-vEN-M

Thanks for tuning in, and don't forget to stay Climate Confident!

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Credits
Music credits - Intro by Joseph McDade, and Outro music for this podcast was composed, played, and produced by my daughter Luna Juniper

Richard Delevan:

we have more capacity in renewables in the United States lined up to come online and is currently waiting for permission than there is currently in operation in the United States. We have similar situation in most developed countries, so part of it gets pretty wonky, pretty quickly. But the reality is find ways to unblock, find ways to cut the red tape, find ways to be able to move this forward in the time that we need, because it is possible, but we need to act now

Tom Raftery:

Good morning, good afternoon, or good evening, wherever you are in the world. This is the Climate Confident podcast. The number one podcast, showcasing best practices in climate emission, reductions and removals. And I'm your host, Tom Raftery. Don't forget to click follow on this podcast in your podcast app of choice, to be sure you don't miss any episodes. Hi everyone. And welcome to episode 114 of the climate confident podcast. My name is Tom Raftery. And before we kick off, I just want to take a quick second to express my sincere gratitude to all of this podcast's amazing supporters. Your support has been really instrumental in keeping this podcast going. And I'm truly grateful for each and every one of you. If you're not already supporter, I'd like to encourage you to consider joining our community of like-minded individuals who are passionate about climate. Supporting this podcast is easy and affordable with options starting as low as just three euros or $3. That's less than the cost of a cup of coffee. And your support will make a huge difference in keeping this show going strong. To become a supporter. Simply click on the support link in the show notes of this or any episode of the podcast. Or just visit tiny url.com/climate pod. Now, without further ado with me on the show today, I have my special guest Richard, Richard, welcome to the podcast. Would you like to introduce yourself?

Richard Delevan:

Thanks, Tom. Great to be here. so it's Richard Delvin and I am a communications consultant that works with energy and climate tech companies, based outta London. And, uh, so prior to doing this, I was a journalist for a number of years, worked also in a startup. So I come at this from a, a number of different angles.

Tom Raftery:

Fantastic. And this is, this is timely, Richard, because we had the IPCC report published earlier this week. Now I say earlier this week. Today is Friday the 24th. This podcast is gonna go over next Wednesday. So for people who are watching or listening to it, the report came out last week, , but, um, the report came out and received some press, but I think there's a little bit of confusion possibly around the report. A, what is it, and B, what did it say? I mean, we saw the headlines about an Antonio Guterres said, but other than that, and you are familiar with the report. I received the, I, I received your newsletter, your LinkedIn newsletter yesterday, where you went through it in some detail and I thought Richard'd be the perfect guy to get on to talk about it. So here you are, Richard. Tell me about the IPCC report that came out this week. What is it? Right. Why is it, and, what are the, what are the headlines?

Richard Delevan:

Well, I suppose the, the first thing to, to note is that, that, as you say, the thing that got cut through with, kind of media over the course, of the day that followed. It was probably the, the Secretary General's quote about everything everywhere, all at once. That was beautiful. You know, which was, was a well designed thing. We might come back to how that worked as a communications tactic. Cuz I do think that, that while that got cut through, and as well as the headline on the report itself, being that this was the final warning, from the IPCC about the opportunity to really still bend the curve on temperature rise, and this being really the last chance, until the next report of this kind, which won't be for five years. So their key takeaway being that we only have a few years to make decisions that will determine whether or not the world stays under 1.5 degrees C of warming or overshoots that. So this is the sixth, synthesis report as they call it. So this is taking reports that they've been issuing since 2018, more than 700 scientists involved in the preparation of the report from countries around the world. Obviously a process of negotiation to come to a consensus on that. But the, the thing that they do report with high confidence is that this really is the last window of opportunity, before which we bake in, a lot of irreversible, or at least in the near term, irreversible effects, from that, increase in temperature.

Tom Raftery:

And it's interesting you say that. I mean 700 scientists, but it's not just the scientists who helped craft this, is it there were, uh, state actors involved as well, which means that the output, the final report that was published was by definition of compromise, right?

Richard Delevan:

I think anytime you're trying to get a consensus of that, that many people from whatever walk of life, I think that, you're always talking about trying to find in the, their case, I think the highest common denominator, because of the importance and the urgency of the message they're trying to get across. Um, so while I think of course with any, any process like that, there's going to be various ways of trying to frame the different issues that are involved. How to talk about various parts of the energy mix, various ways of talking about issues around loss and damage, issues around the obligations of the developed world in particular, the ones who have put the most greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. What moral obligations do they have to the less developed world or indeed those for whom, access to reliable, affordable energy is an issue. You know, the 750 million people around the world who don't currently have reliable access to electricity, it's a bit difficult to say, you must go off and buy an ev. That's not necessarily gonna be relevant if you're in all parts of the world. And I think that's, an important part of, of how the report gets put together is the balance of interest between, you know, people representing all of us.

Tom Raftery:

Mm-hmm.. Okay. So what were the headlines from the report? What were the key things that came out of it?

Richard Delevan:

I think one of the key things was this call for, the, need to accelerate, this move towards net zero overall. I think that's one of the key takeaways for policy makers and for the broader community, is that, you know, the electrification of the energy system, moving the energy transition to net zero as fast as possible. That to bring some of these things forward. That we risk, you know, overshooting by various kind of elements there. I think the other key takeaway is that in addition to the, the kind of global justice aspect of it that I referenced before is the need that even if we do everything right, there's still going to be a gap. So even if we eat less beef, even if we, you know, decarbonize the electricity system. Even if we do all of the other things, there's still gonna be a gap to keep us in that kind of safer zone of under two degrees C and ideally under 1.5 degrees C. And that's gonna require the ability for us to capture and remove carbon and other greenhouse gases from the atmosphere that are already there. The consensus is that once we stop putting greenhouse gases and particularly CO2 into the atmosphere that we will see a, a gradual cooling over time, but that we will need to find ways to scale technologies as well as nature-based solutions that are going to be able to help to, you know, both capture CO2 before it's emitted and find ways to store it. But also, my particular point of view on this is that, we need to find technological ways to be able to accelerate those. To improve ways of removing carbon that's already in the atmosphere.

Tom Raftery:

Okay. We don't really have any good ways of doing that yet. Do we? I mean, I know there's some demonstrators, there's a Clime Works one in Iceland and a few others, and I had a, couple of guests on the podcast from a company called Undo a few months back and they were doing enhanced weathering solutions, for example, and they were hoping to get to 10 million tons removal in several years time. And you know, 10 million is barely a drop in the ocean for what we need to get outta the atmosphere. We, we need to be taking tens of billions of tons outta the atmosphere every year. So 10 million barely puts a dent in that. So how do we get from there to where we actually need to be?

Richard Delevan:

Well, I think that's an important point, which is to recognize that, no one from, that industry who I've heard speak is saying this is a panacea or a silver bullet. It doesn't avoid, the first and urgent necessity to do those other things to decarbonize, even the hard to abate sectors like steel, like cement, like aviation, like aluminum, like minerals. But also to make sure that, you know, emissions are prevented from being emitted in the first place. That's the first priority. And if you hear people from Clime Works, or Undo, or any of these other companies speak, they seem pretty consistent in that message. That this is a contribution to that. I think the question is how quickly can it scale? Because of course, we are, as you say at the beginning of that process where we have, people who are experimenting with different technologies. You'd mentioned about, you know, one solution about weathering, other solutions about essentially look like very large, refrigerated, kind of containers that are sitting on mountaintops in Iceland or a new one going online in Wyoming. And other places where, we have the ability to do that. The question is, and this is why I think companies like Microsoft or some other early adopters who have paid, these companies to, verifiably, remove a certain quantum of CO2 from the atmosphere. If we wind the clock back and long enough, you know, we can look at people saying solar, that's never gonna be a major contributor to the energy mix. Ah, wind. That's just never gonna work. It doesn't scale. With any, you know, disruptive technology that comes in, there is a pattern and I think that that's one of the things that's, why there's, I think, some interest and optimism. Uh, not that the sector's gonna solve everything, but that it can play a role. And I think that because the opportunity to improve the efficiency and scalability of technology, obviously we need to do the other nature-based things as well. We need to make sure we're protecting existing old growth forests, mangrove swamps, um, that are excellent carbon sinks. We need to make sure, as we're pleased to see, recent political change in Brazil where there seems to be pledge to ensure that more of the Amazon remains intact and less of it's cleared for cattle raising. So I think that, you know, we have to do all those things, and I'm sure we'll need to do more of them. I'm sure that we'll be seeing genetic modification to look at ways of increasing the carbon sink potential of some of these, new growth, forests, whether they be in mangrove swamps or whether they be other types of trees, where we might see an improvement of uptake of carbon over time. But I think on the technology side, outside of biotech, you're gonna see, the ability to find ways, to scale these technologies faster. And I think how fast that's going to go, we just don't know, which is why, it is a bit nervous making to look at the numbers and say, well, how much of this do we need to capture or remove? You know, the numbers aren't huge in terms of making the maths work from the IPCC, but that's also why I think when you see the quotes from individual scientists who contribute to the report, they say, it is likely we will overshoot, but every 0.1 degree c, we overshoot it becomes harder to fix. And so that's why finding ways and scaling them quickly is really important. I think

Tom Raftery:

There's also the issue of cost as well, right? Because, the sooner we act, the cheaper because, right, uh, if we leave a go longer, it's just gonna get more expensive to fix.

Richard Delevan:

And I think this is a point that lots of other market observers have made. There's a great company in London called B Zero. They're a carbon credits rating agency, and they, they put out a report, advising the UK government about, the need to scale some of these sectors quickly for that exact reason. The sooner we scale these things and the sooner we do all of the other aspects of decarbonization, the less expensive this is. And if you wind the clock way back, I mean, I was listening, or reading, uh, Peter Francopan's amazing new book, The Earth Transformed. For those of your, your listeners or, or viewers who haven't heard of it yet. He's the author of the Silk Roads. It's a incredibly long book, but there is, it's rich with, I mean, it stretches from 4.5 billion years ago to today in terms of the impact of climate on history generally, and particularly on human history. And for those of us old enough to remember, and I'm not gonna say you're old, as old as me, Tom, but I'm certainly old enough to remember George Bush pere, you know, running in 1988 saying, you know, if you're worried about the greenhouse effect, wait until you see the White House effect, and promising to tackle greenhouse emissions as far back as 1988. And of course we've had many of these opportunities to be able to move quicker, you know, moving from that to Rio to Kyoto, to the beginning of the COP process. And we've had many, many different opportunities to, to move this. One of the, the biggest reasons that we didn't, and again, this is an excellent part of Francopan's book, is that when the Cold War ended, we entered this period of globalization, which enabled a far greater amount of economic interdependence and connectivity around the world. And that did things like raise 400 million people in China out of poverty. So I think that while we can look back and say, we should have taken all of these off ramps. It would've been cheaper sooner. At the time, there was always a good reason to do something slightly differently. So I think now this is why we will find ourselves in the situation that we're in, and that's why the problem is as urgent as it is.

Tom Raftery:

Okay. Did the reports cut through? Did did people take notice? I mean, sure. You and I took notice, but it's something that we're, we're interested in and monitor anyway, but did the people who can actually make a difference notice?

Richard Delevan:

I think that one of the things that's different today than say 20 years ago, I've been working with companies on advising, on their communications and organizations for, for quite a while. And I would say that, you know, 15, 20 years ago, people might have slightly noticed the IPCC, but you wouldn't see it being paid attention in sustainability practices within a corporation, you wouldn't have seen, the ceo, actually paying attention to some of these things. So I think that there are other communications channels that do reach decision makers who are key players in making a difference. But I would agree with you that, it's something here in the uk we looked at the coverage and you saw your day one story and Guardian and on, you know, kind of PM on BBC Radio 4. And then I went back this morning, actually before I knew we were gonna be recording and, and listened back to what was the lead story the following morning on the Today Program. The flagship news program on Radio four. And what was it? It was about a poli, a report, you know, into the need for reform in the Metropolitan Police. Right. Um, it didn't get a shout, it did not get a look in, so it really wasn't for many mainstream media outlets a day, one day story. and of course, you know, the Secretary General's quote got the most, you know, kind of cut through, because it was catchy and referenced the, the most award-winning film of all time. But, that's unfortunately not necessarily something that leads people to say, well, what can I do about this? Hmm. Um, in talking to people, like, how was this received? People who aren't working in this business, people who aren't necessarily paying as close attention as you or I, the, the reactions tend to be a couple of things. One, gosh, that sounds terrible. Exactly the same way it sounded terrible the last time I heard about this. what am I supposed to do about that? And that's, you know, the reaction is, is a feeling of disempowerment. I think the second piece is that, okay, well, so I don't actually see where my agency is in helping contribute to any kind of a solution. And the second thought, if you have one, particularly if you have children or grandchildren, is gosh, I really don't want to think about this because how am I gonna talk to my kids? How am I gonna tell them we had all these chances and we didn't take them? And I think that that leaves people in a place where if you're running a news desk or if you're running a, you're an assignment editor, it's difficult to, you know, take that story and run it for three days cuz I suppose part of it is, what's new? And even though the, the report itself talks a lot about solutions, and even though the Secretary General was important, you know, importantly did focus on innovations, credible real innovations about how we do something about this. I think the, the reporting and the overall coverage, um, you know, if there was advice for newsrooms, there's a couple of great groups like Covering Climate Now, out of New York, and there are some others that are trying to advise newsrooms about how to cover these things. And, also organizations trying to suggest how ordinary people can talk to their children or friends and try to persuade them about the importance of this. And I think what it comes down to in my view is, is how to be able to talk about the things that people can do and the solutions that are possible. The reality is that the technology and the capital to do something about this exists today. It's nice to talk about some of the things that need further innovation, like carbon removal, but the reality is we have all of the tools, all of the technology, all of the capital, to do what is necessary right now, but to make that net zero future happen, as someone else once said, the future's un unevenly distributed. And I think that that's, that's part of the challenge is how do we, get people continue to be interested so they don't switch off, nor do they have to feel traumatized about the prospects you know of a future that, if you, just take a to logical extreme, might seem grim. So the question is how, we maintain our ability to focus on the things we can control, to make those positive changes. And it's not just separating, you know, your rubbish into different bins for recycling, although that's important. It's really about how do we get all of us thinking about systemic change, in a way that people can actually do something about it. it

Tom Raftery:

Yeah, I mean, it's also, systemic change can only happen from the top. I mean, we can ask from it down at our level at the bottom, but the changes can only take place from the top, and we haven't seen enough systemic changes, I think. I mean, we're well off where we should be for our path to 2030. And how do we fix that? How do we require the people who can make those systemic changes to make those systemic changes? Cause it's six and a half years away, 2030.

Richard Delevan:

Mm, no. It is, and I think that's the why, the urgency. That's what, the main message from the IPCC report, is saying, this is, the onus is on all of us, but particularly on our political leaders. And as well as, the big market actors that have a role to play in maintaining their commitments and trying to accelerate them. And I think we see that across, various different industries where they're saying a lot of the right things. And I think that, you know, what we also have to take on board is, you know, when Greta Thunberg stands outside of, of, of COP and says blah, blah, blah, that's meant to be taken as, perhaps the words and the good intentions just aren't enough. And the question is, I think you know, we've seen enormous progress in the last year in terms of political leadership in different parts of the world. Part of that has been as a response to, unfortunately, the invasion of Ukraine and some of the cruelties that we've seen perpetuated on the Ukrainian people. What's helped to move the needle is, you know, a lot of people worried, okay, well, will there be a political response that says, well, we'll simply have to find a way to accommodate, the aggressor here in order to be able to maintain access, to affordable, reliable sources of energy. Instead. And when you look at the International Energy Agency's reports on this back in the autumn, things that have come out since, is that we've seen incredible movement faster than people thought possible when it comes to the adoption of renewables. And then when it comes to, increasing capacity to build more of them. You then saw in the United States the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act in August, which came like a bolt from the blue. uh, very few people thought that was gonna pass, and, and suddenly there's, you know, 370 billion dollars that's going in as incentives to accelerate the transition. Then the European Union feels it has to counter, which is their right to do, and they put, an almost similar quantum of incentives on the table in terms of trying to make sure that a, they're not being out incentivized by the United States to pull these kind of industries of the future there, but, also to accelerate, the movement that was already beginning, and gathering pace because of what had happened in Ukraine. And so you're seeing that, you're seeing what's happening in China, frankly, which has been a leader not just in providing and sourcing a lot of these vital equipment and minerals that enable these technologies. but going further, things like long duration energy storage, where they've taken things like compressed air technology and, found ways to make it more efficient, closer to pumped hydro, and, took their pilot project and are now doing something even more scaled. So I think that you're seeing a lot of momentum, a lot of pressure in the system. I think that the, challenge, and I think this is where everybody certainly listening to this, who votes in whatever country that you're in, is ensuring that the political decisions that have been made that are moving things in the right direction are merely a, a first step. And that, we now see the, the consequences of some of those decisions. Some of them being short term, kind of disruptions in supply chains on some key parts of the, you know, infrastructure for minerals of other things. But also on the policy side and regulatory side where we have bottlenecks, you know, we have more capacity in renewables in the United States lined up to come online and is currently waiting for permission than there is currently in operation in the United States. We have similar situation in most developed countries, so part of it gets pretty wonky, pretty quickly. But the reality is find ways to unblock, find ways to cut the red tape, find ways to be able to move this forward in the time that we need because it is possible, but we need to act now.

Tom Raftery:

Yeah. And then you have things like, the Biden administration permitting new oil and gas fields in Alaska. Just

Richard Delevan:

Yes. You know, it's,

Tom Raftery:

I think it one step forward, three steps

Richard Delevan:

back. The two step . Yeah. Or indeed the, the 168 coal fired power plants that are being considered in China. So, there is absolutely both sides of that equation, and I think that it's up to constituents, however they are able to express their influence, and that's not just ordinary folks. The faster that the energy system decarbonizes, the less demand for some of these things there are for lower carbon alternatives, to make sure that they aren't displacing, these things that could come online. Again, I'm not gonna speak about the particulars of the Willow kind of project in, in Alaska. I don't know enough about it. But I think that, obviously lots of people did look at that and went, ouch, that's bad. and I think that the question is making sure that when we're looking at how to make sure we're unblocking the things that we do want, that the pressure is there to ensure that some of these regulatory bottlenecks get solved.

Tom Raftery:

Right? Yep, yep, yep. You referenced that famous William Gibson quote about the future being already here, but not being evenly distributed, that is a huge issue too, though, isn't it? In, in many aspects. I mean, we, you and I live in the developed world. The countries we live in and come from, we're, we're both immigrants. The countries we've or originated in and live in are, are both responsible for a huge number of emissions, historically. Whereas as you referenced the, a lot of the developing countries are only starting on their development pathway, have very low emissions to date, and yet can we say to them, whoa, hang on a sec. Or how do we, how do we square that circle? I mean, you've, you've got the whole thing about, uh, giving compensation to these countries as well. So there's a lot to be figured out yet, isn't there?

Richard Delevan:

I, I think that's one of the things that people will be watching, you know, at the next cop, the Cop 28 that'll be taking place in Dubai. This. Is, you know, it'll be a, a stock take, the first, in a few years and, and since the Paris Agreement to be able to say, what are individual countries doing? How are they moving towards these targets? There will be a lot of conversations at the fringes of that, where industry talking about how its role needs to change or how things, will shake out from that. So, I think that, we saw on COP 27 at Sharam Al Sheikh, there was a lot of discussion around loss and damage, the responsibility of those people, countries that did do a lot of the historical emissions, to those in particular countries, low long islands, you know, low lying parts of the coast. Where there's high concentrations of people who might, will be of lower incomes, what is to be done to, you know, either assist in their and the adaptation, necessary in order to be able to cope with some of the things that'll come from that. I think that seeing those voices raised and be given more credence, both at Cop, and by the media will be important to make sure that their voices are heard. I think that as well, the technology transfer, that's necessary in order to make sure that these countries have the ability not just to, be takers of some of these technologies, but to be able to have their own stake in helping to, you know, both deploy and, and manufacture them potentially in future. Slightly controversially, you may be aware that the, you know, Indonesia had banned exports of nickel in one of the key strategic metals, that's part of the energy transition. Mm-hmm., um, in order to be able to foster a battery manufacturing industry in their country. It's hard to know what to think about that. But I think it's a manifestation of that, the so-called global South isn't necessarily going to be, willing to sit idly by and simply be a provider of raw materials to the rest of the world. And I think that's why, the conversations are so important.

Tom Raftery:

Alright. Yeah. And what role do you see technology and innovation playing in this? I mean, you said already we have the solutions. I mean, we have extremely good wind power and solar power. The prices are coming down all the time. A lot of that is through technological advances and the, the, the learning curve as well. The experience curve as, as people get better and as it scales. I mean, there's, there's a number of factors there. What part does technology and innovation play in this?

Richard Delevan:

I think that while it's, it doesn't displace political leadership and it doesn't displace, the recognition, which I think we're at a greater point than we ever have been before about the need to address the problem. I think that what technology offers us, is the ability to scale some of these solutions. I think that, one of the things that we've noted over the last few years is that now it's table stakes, for people to talk about sustainability. I looked at 50 companies last week. Everyone from a Middle Eastern airline to a maker of coffee pods to, someone who makes various types of, consumer packaged goods, and they all use almost exactly the same language of sustainability is in our dna. So I think for me, and one of the reasons that I, I've just made the decision to, work with climate tech companies, or whether they be big or small, is that I, I genuinely believe that, you know, one of the ways that we're gonna be able to move the needle is by finding people who are smart enough to deploy technology and capital to actually make things more efficient, to reduce emissions faster, to be able to lower the overall energy burden and be able to look at how we maintain stay within our carbon budget, while also, finding ways that are healthier for people to, you know, ways for people to live. And I think that's why, you know, it's such a fascinating, amazing sector, to be be able to support and work in. Because I think that when you, you see, you know, we talked earlier about, how the coverage cut through and how, people are thinking about the IPCC report. I think one of the other things that's hopeful for me about that is when we see employers, when we see people who have, for voluntary or otherwise, leaving some of the big tech giants, where are they going? A lot of them are looking for the idea that they could move to a place to work with people where there's purpose and there is not gonna be any better purpose than to be able to look your kids in the eye 20 years from now and say, this is what I did. Mm-hmm. Not everyone's gonna be able to go work for an ngo. Not everyone's gonna be able to go and be on the front lines holding a placard. But a lot of people with a lot of talent can put that talent to good use. And I see, and talk to people anecdotally where they're moving in all sorts of very surprising parts of old energy, other parts of industry, and seeking opportunities to, you know, put their professional skills and talents to use. I was talking to the CTO of a large company the other day, who's, kids three years ago, couldn't have cared less what he did and would be bored to tears at Christmas dinner, hearing about, you know, what he was doing up to at work. Now they're coming to him and saying, how can I actually, you know, potentially get involved? I'm doing computer science degree, you know, but is there something I can be doing, in climate tech or the energy transition. So there's, there's an interest and I think the people that are gonna help to actually scale that technology now are more interested than ever in trying to put their skills to use to do that. And I think that's very hopeful,

Tom Raftery:

Indeed, indeed. And you mentioned Greta Thunberg as well and all the amazing things that she has done. I mean, she's had an incredible success, at raising the profile of climate and getting that story out there. Oh, how likely is it that we will get political leaders who are as well able to frame the narrative around what we need to do to get to where we need to go to?

Richard Delevan:

Well, I think that the smarter members of our political leadership around the world, will have taken a lesson or a few lessons, from Greta Thunberg, cuz again, she has, as you say, cut through. And as somebody who is very familiar with, let's say neuro divergence in my own life and with the lives of people in my family, I can say it's one of the things I, I find, so tremendously appealing about her. One of her mottos is, we ask the difficult questions because that's the only way you actually get any progress. But I think from a, a broader perspective, the only way we make meaning in the world is through stories, the way we make sense of things. And I think that when we're talking about narrative, when it comes to change and innovation, you know, we used to thinking about stories where there's a good guy, there's a bad guy, and there's a victim, and we have to help the victim. Problem is that all of us at any point are either the victim, the villain, or the good guy. And so thinking about narrative in a slightly different way, where you're sketching out, this vision of the future where it's a desirable one, where we all have a stake and can take part. To empathise within the people we're trying to influence part of that audience to actually think, what are the dilemmas that they face? How can I actually help them through what I'm doing? Work through some of that. And then ultimately, you know, if you're particularly a a company, how what you are doing is gonna empower and give agency to that audience, to those people so they can see a way forward working together to get to that better future. And I think that leaders could be doing a lot more to help frame those narratives. And I include people from the IPCC and the, and the UN Secretary General in that. It's, it's great to have a great sound bite. It's great to be able to paint a villain. But I think to the point about, the compromise process that is, integral to the IPCC and the, the greater UN system, we have to find ways of thinking about stories where it's not just about who's the baddie and who's the victim. It's about how do we all do this in a way together, which isn't just Saccharin. This isn't just, talk. Mm-hmm.. Um, but actually, actually can make a difference.

Tom Raftery:

Okay. Super. We're coming towards the end of the podcast now, Richard. Is there any question that I haven't asked that you wish I had or any aspect of this we haven't touched on that you think it's important for people to think about?

Richard Delevan:

I suppose the question. that I have for you, Tom , is, uh, what do you think people should be reading, paying more attention to than they aren't today?

Tom Raftery:

Reading, paying more attention to, um, well, climate news, I would say, because, it's hard, it's hard to find, frankly, and it's, it's not well reported on, so, if there is a big climate story, it's very rarely on page one of a newspaper. It's very rarely the lead story in a TV broadcast unless it happens to be, some massive storm has just hit the east coast of the US or something like that. And even then, it's rarely uh, reported that this is a climate issue. It's a weather issue, and there's a big difference between the two. So I think. People should be paying more attention to climate stories. Now, we're all busy. We're all busy. And then the, the other side of it is a lot of the climate news that's out there is depressing, which I think is a big part of why it doesn't make the headlines very often because I think news editors are probably concerned they'll turn off their readership, which is unfortunate. And one of the reasons I started this podcast was because I wanted to highlight good news stories outta climate as well. Because if you are only ever hearing bad news stories on climate, you'll fall into despair and throw your hands up in the air and, just curl up in a ball and not do anything. Whereas, you know, I've published over 110 episodes of this podcast now, and they're all good news stories and, that should help educate and inspire at least some people to take action is my hope. And if, if for no other reason, then it stops me. You know, hearing these good news stories every week, it stops me collapsing into a ball, sobbing on the floor, throwing my hands up in despair.

Richard Delevan:

Well, I don't think I can do better than that, but I think that what, what you're doing when I think that that, you know, telling stories like this, getting them out is, is exactly for the reasons you've said so important. So I'm really grateful you were able to bring me on and have this conversation today.

Tom Raftery:

Oh, thank you, Richard. If people would like to know more about yourself or any of the topics we discussed in the podcast today, where would you have me direct them?

Richard Delevan:

Best place to find me is on LinkedIn, and you can subscribe to my Week in Climate Tech newsletter. We, usually try to give it a little bit, of a light touch, little bit of humor to try to leaven things just slightly. If we can face the future with a bit of humor and a bit of humility that I think we're, we've got a better shot.

Tom Raftery:

Nice. Lovely. I'll put a link to the newsletter and your LinkedIn profile in the show notes so everyone can have access to it. Cool. Richard, thanks a million for coming on the podcast today.

Richard Delevan:

Thank you, Tom.

Tom Raftery:

Okay, we've come to the end of the show. Thanks everyone for listening. If you'd like to know more about the Climate Confident podcast, feel free to drop me an email to Tom raftery@outlook.com. Or message me on LinkedIn or Twitter. If you like the show, please, don't forget to click follow on it in your podcast application of choice to get new episodes as soon as they're published. Also, please don't forget to rate and review the podcast. It really does help new people to find the show. Thanks, catch you all next time.

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