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I was never the outdoorsy type growing up, so when I learned about climate change as a teenager, I was extremely concerned, but couldn’t get myself interested in the topic. I found it overwhelming, depressing, and extremely politically polarizing. After years of revisiting the topic and even completing a BA in Environmental Analysis & Policy, I started to find that by separating facts from politics and injecting some humor and hope, the environment could be nonpartisan and fun. In April 2020, I put that to the test by launching The Sweaty Penguin Podcast. Every week, The Sweaty Penguin cuts through the noise and the doom-and-gloom of the climate conversation with late-night-comedy-style monologues and in-depth conversations with leading global experts on a variety of environmental issues. Since its launch, The Sweaty Penguin has released 80+ episodes on topics ranging from fracking to ADHD to maple syrup to jellyfish, amassed almost 12,000 downloads, showcased the work of professors from ten countries across five continents, won three grants, and became a PBS partner. You can find us on any major podcasting platform, on pbs.org/perilandpromise, or on our website at www.thesweatypenguin.com which has past guests, press coverage, and more information.
• How to talk climate change without being overwhelming, depressing, or politicized
• Why making environmental issues more accessible/fun will lead to positive change
• The funny side of climate change
• Being a young voice in the climate movement taking a very different approach from other Gen Z-ers
• My experience starting a podcast independently during quarantine and how I grew it from a quarantine hobby to a PBS-affiliate
• A LONG list of environmental issues ranging from various foods and animals to fast fashion to energy to international governance! I've interviewed over 70 experts in a year and a half on a multitude of topics, not to mention my academic background.
• Liberals and conservatives hate each other. How can they find common ground on climate change?
• The last few years have seen record hurricanes, wildfires, heat waves, and other climate disasters. How do you find hope and optimism in all of that?
• How do you make climate change funny? Is it funny on its own in any ways?
• How do you approach conversations with someone you disagree with politically? Why even bother?
• Can individuals do anything to stop climate change themselves?
• You've done lots of podcast episodes on foods and beverages. Does stopping climate change require us to change our diets?
• What episode of The Sweaty Penguin most surprised you? Which one would you recommend to a first time listener?
• Climate change is often framed as "environment versus economy," where helping one hurts the other. You push back on that framing in every episode of The Sweaty Penguin. Why?
• Most people think of figures in the Gen Z climate movement as activists at protests making massive demands of politicians. You've taken a very different route, becoming an "informer" and not demanding anything of anyone. Why did you choose this niche for yourself?
• How did you come up with the name "The Sweaty Penguin?"
You can count on me to promote the episode on our show and social media channels, and hopefully PBS's Peril and Promise would be willing to share as well. Currently, The Sweaty Penguin gets about 200 plays per week, has almost 800 Twitter followers, and over 3,500 Instagram followers. I am also open to discussing ad swaps/other collaborations.