Episodes

  • Seasons greetings listeners, and what a festive treat Tom and Sam have for you this episode. This week we welcome Lucy Siegle back to the studio, before listening to Brother Spirit and Brother Embrace, Zen Monks from Plum Village, as they impart wisdom on how we can reconnect with nature at this pivotal moment. They tell us stories of leading meditation circles with key negotiators at COP26 and how connecting our heads and hearts can help the climate movement. We also hear from this season's previous guests on what they want for the planet this Christmas and how we can help them achieve it.



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  • Tzeporah Berman started her climate career cooking for activists at a camp protesting anti-felling in British Columbia. A year later she was arrested in the same place, microphone in hand, as one of the movements' leading climate defenders. Since then Tzeporah has become one of Canada's most prominent environmentalists, with a mission to inspire the next generation of activists. Sam and Tom managed to sit down with Tzeporah at COP26 to discuss her career, from negotiating the Great Bear Rainforest agreement, to co-directing Greenpeace's Global Climate and Energy Program, and now chairing the Fossil Fuel Non-Proliferation Treaty Initiative.



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  • It isn't often you meet a General, but this week retired four star US army General Stanley McChrystal shares his wisdom after a lifetime of military service. Sam and Tom sat down to ask hard hitting questions about the military and it's responsibility to the climate movement. Exploring the role the military plays within the climate crisis and how it's focus has shifted as environmental needs have gained attention and urgency, Tom and Sam listen to stories of climate wars of the past and how we can learn from them. Now an advocate for National Service, and a Leadership tutor at Yale, Stan explains what the environmental leaders of tomorrow need to mediate risk, and combat the environmental crisis in our age of misinformation.



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  • This week Tom and Sam are joined by Shirley Djukurna Krenak, member of the Brazilian Krenak community, and a leading activist for Indigenous voices within the climate movement. Recorded at COP26, Shirley has travelled across the world  to increase awareness of the environmental impacts on small indigenous communities like her own. In 2015, the Krenak people were directly affected by Brazil's worst ever environmental disaster when a dam collapsed, unleashing tonnes of mining waste into their sacred Doce River, affecting the ecosystem for hundreds of kilometers. Shirley tells Sam and Tom about the effect it's had on her homeland, finding her voice, and the power of healing ourselves and nature.



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  • Farhana Yamin is one of the most influential environmental lawyers and climate policy experts in Britain. This week she chats to Tom and Sam to talk through the past 30 years in the climate world, from convincing world leaders the climate crisis was real, to presenting the notion of zero emissions and campaigning with Extinction Rebellion. We discuss her time in UN boardrooms making etiquette faux pas, representing small islands against international powers, as well as her emotional experience of burnout and depression which has taken her back to nature, and reconnected her to her roots.



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  • We're back! Listeners, welcome to Series 2, and boy do we have a series in store for you.



    This week Tom, Lucy and brand new host Sam are going to transport you to COP26. You've seen it all over the news but what actually goes on at COP? And what was it like to be there? Well, the team have been running around the streets of Glasgow to answer just that. From the blue zone to the green zone and out into the marches, we talk to Belgian bikers, climate lawyers and the children protesting for their futures, Tom door-steps (well, march-steps) Ed Miliband... and somehow Sam is taking song requests from John Kerry? All in pursuit of bringing you the most powerful climate stories from the conference.



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  • Socials:
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  • We have reached the finale of season one! Thank you so much for joining us on the journey so far. To celebrate, Lucy and Tom do something a bit different - they pass the mic to the next generation of nature and climate storytellers, photographers, reporters and filmmakers. We speak to young storytellers in a time of climate change and ecological catastrophe about how they feel, what they hope for and what they need. Starting with the talented and passionate students of Falmouth University, and then passing the mic abroad to young climate communicators across the world, with excerpts from the brilliant new book out this week; Together We Are Unstoppable. And if all that wasn't enough, there's room for a swim as well!

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  • We speak to two innovators who have taken unappealing subjects that nobody wants to talk about – sewage and bugs, respectively  - and made them compelling! Hugo Tagholm is the CEO of Surfers Against Sewage, the Cornish NGO that has morphed from single-issue crusty surfers’ organisation into a slick global outfit, responsible for changing the law on toxic waste, sewage treatment and plastic pollution. Driven by his fierce passion for the ocean and environmental justice, Hugo tells us how to choose the right tool for the job; be that an inflatable turd, or carefully drafted framework on banning single use plastics. Then we catch up with Tim Cockerill, the zoologist, broadcaster, flea circus impresario and insect wrangler for many flagship nature shows. The fact that insect populations are declining dramatically should worry us all. But many people don’t notice because they don’t like them. However Tim is on a mission to give insects an image makeover. He will stop at nothing to get them in the spotlight…and we mean nothing. Warning do no listen to this episode while eating. 

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  • Guest: Bill McKibben: Author, Educator, Environmentalist & Founder of 350.org

    For years we have been told that the way we do things is set in stone. That we cannot change the system. But that is not true, and the system is collapsing. New stories are emerging: Green New Deals, Divestment from Fossil Fuels, global political movements like XR and Fridays For Future. We dig into how Stories and storytelling are at the heart of these changes with the man who has been dismantling old stories and building new ones to replace them, and focussing on his most impressive achievement to date: one hastening the demise of fossil fuels: the Divestment movement.

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  • Entertainment shows from broadcasting giants have incredible power to transmit ideas to huge audiences. Research shows that across countries, we pay more attention to TV on climate than we do to any other forms of media. But on the whole, big budget dramas and soaps remain silent. This week Lucy and Tom, (Coronation Street and Neighbours fans respectively) speak to the award-winning British screenwriter, Lisa Holdsworth about when and how TV drama will step up to the biggest story of our lives. Lisa is entertaining, brilliantly honest (especially about the commissioning process) and full of ideas about how this drama - the battle to get climate more screen-time – might play out. Spoiler: we’ll know we’ve succeeded when the climate crisis becomes a kitchen sink drama in Hebden Bridge, and the kitchen is flooded.

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  • In the struggle to protect land, water and natural resources Indigenous people have always been on the frontline. 
    These conflicts effect us all - if the Amazon burns, if oil is drilled in the Arctic, if Indonesian forests are felled, we all face the dire consequences.
    These conflicts are increasingly violent. Hundreds of indigenous of activists are killed every year. Many more are threatened, imprisoned, attacked and silenced. 
    Despite their global importance and urgency we rarely hear these stories. This episode is about why, and what we can do about it. Most of all it is an opportunity to hear directly from someone on the frontline; Lottie Cunningham a lawyer and member of the Miskito people in Nicaragua whose lives and land are in dire trouble. 
    Ben Leather from the NGO Global Witness also join Lucy and Tom to give context for the silenced stories of indigenous land defenders worldwide.

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  • Can we harness the power of language more effectively to focus minds on nature and climate? That’s what this episode aims to find out. For some reason when discussing the planetary crisis we’ve often found it really difficult to get the language right, both when talking about nature and climate, and when talking about ourselves. In this episode Lucy and Tom zero in on the words we use, and discover how small changes can make a massive difference. We talk to Damian Carrington, Environment Editor at The Guardian where editorial changes mean that ‘climate change’ is now ‘climate crisis’ and ‘nature’ instead of ‘biodiversity’. Then we catch up with Gillian Burke, natural history expert and presenter on Springwatch, arguably the UK’s favourite show on nature. Gillian tells us about finding her own voice, and emphasises why this is the moment to use it.

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  • Ellie Goulding is a self-confessed ‘nature nerd’ who grew up in rural Hereford. She’s also a global star with two #1 albums, two BRIT Awards, over 132 million singles sold, 22 billion streams and 5 billion views on YouTube. She felt it was her duty to speak to her fans about the nature and climate, becoming a UN Environment ambassador. The consequences have not always been straightforward! In this episode of So Hot Right Now we look at the power of fame. How can you stick your head above the parapet for issues you care about and reach people?
    On the eve of the release of her fourth album, Brighter Blue, Ellie talks frankly to Lucy and Tom about her bright green vision and the true cost of being high profile earth defender. We also speak to LA publicity expert Todd Krim about how he works to link  celebrities with causes they can help and tread the fine line of using fame to lead.

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  • Reporting on frontline environmental issues is the second most dangerous field of journalism after war reporting, and defending and organising can lead to a person being sued, criminalised, attacked, murdered or disappeared. Defending the living world and atmosphere that supports us all, should everyone’s fight, but much of the brunt is borne by indigenous peoples defending ancestral homelands at the heart of many conflicts. In this episode Lucy and Tom speak with Krystal Two Bulls, an Oglala Lakota/Northern Cheyenne woman from Lame Deer, Montana, a US military veteran and an organiser who was part of the resistance against the development of the Dakota Access Pipeline at Standing Rock. We find out how she deals with the dangers and how she sustains her work. This episode is essential listening for anybody protecting the planet, and organising or reporting today. If we want to step up, we must understand both what’s at stake and how the stories we tell and the words we use can turn us into an ally or a threat. 

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  • The climate and nature emergency is the story of our lives, so why has it been covered so badly and how are we going to change that? This week’s guest, George Monbiot provides answers and truth bombs. George is renowned for his fearless uncompromising commitment to social and environmental justice, for his column in the Guardian and books such as Heat and Feral. Over 30 years he has battled to get the true story on the state of the environment into the public domain. In this episode he gives Lucy and Tom a masterclass in staying with the story, overcoming censorship, political interference, hostility and danger, sharpening purpose, shoving out complacency and how to deliver real impact.

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  • This episode is about justice; climate justice. In this two-part special Lucy and Tom get to grips with one of the biggest problems with talking about nature and climate - forgetting to include people.

    The climate and nature crisis isn't fair - many of the people worst effected by climate change and the loss of nature have done the least damage. And for a long time, we didn't talk very much about people at all when we talk about climate. But this is changing and this weeks guests are at the forefront of that change. 

    Joined first by climate justice pioneer and Former President of Ireland Mary Robinson and innovative climate broadcasters Mary Heglar and Amy Westervelt, So Hot Right Now takes a deep dive into the work of people fighting to get human stories into global issues.

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  • After last week’s lesson from Sir David Attenborough, Lucy and Tom continue their mission to deliver more impact in nature and climate reporting. In this episode they catch up with the planet’s most famous climate diplomat, ‘big hitter’, Christiana Figueres. In 2010 Christiana seemed to rescue climate negotiations from the diplomatic trash-can following disastrous global talks, against all the odds marshalling the world towards the global Paris Treaty. Who better to catch up with as we try to imagine a post pandemic future? And who better to advise us on the right stories to tell to help us get there? From lockdown in her native Costa Rica, Christiana gives us a workout in optimism, weans us off doom laden narratives, and explains how we might set the course of direction to a better future. If you thought you were doomed to spend the next two decades telling stories of constant destruction and untold human misery, this could be the point you set yourself free.

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  • This episode looks at the work of the world’s premiere nature broadcaster, one of the most trusted voices in the world. We ask Sir David Attenborough what he has learnt, what he would do if he was starting his career now, how we can use wonder to fight for nature and what we need to do immediately.

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  • So Hot Right now is a new podcast on a mission to change the conversation about nature and the climate crisis, launching on the 26th May.

    To save the world we need to change the story. Nature and the climate are in crisis. To survive we must use our most powerful tool - communication. Telling these stories can be difficult and dangerous. But done right they can change the world. Join environmental journalist Lucy Siegle (The Guardian, The One Show) and wildlife filmmaker Tom Mustill (Greta Thunberg/#NatureNow & BBC Natural History Unit) as they learn how to communicate better, from those who do it best. Legendary broadcaster Sir David Attenborough, former president of Ireland Mary Robinson, singer and activist Ellie Goulding, UN climate negotiator Christiana Figueres, Native American Veteran and Organizer Krystal Two-Bulls, and other master communicators all share their hard-earned insights. Informal, personal and passionate, these conversations will give you the tools to play your part, whether you’re phoning your dad, or addressing the United Nations.

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