There were several moments of legitimate engagement on climate change at last week’s Democratic presidential debates. But did any of it resonate with voters?

In this episode, we break down the key points candidates made on stage in Detroit — from promoting direct air capture to climate justice — with help from Jigar Shah, president and co-founder of Generate Capital and co-host of The Energy Gang podcast.

Plus, top Republican pollster Frank Luntz gives Senate Democrats a lesson on climate change communication. We discuss the GOP strategist’s about-face on climate change.

Finally, lawmakers in Ohio just passed an enormous subsidy package for coal and nuclear plants, while gutting the state’s renewable energy and efficiency standards. Utility FirstEnergy lobbied hard and helped elect allies to office to get $1.1 billion in ratepayer funds for its aging nukes. We round out the show with a look at Ohio’s controversial new law.

Recommended reading:

  • Grist: In Detroit, Democratic Candidates Actually Did Some Climate Debating
  • Mother Jones: Joe Biden’s Climate Plan Melted During the Debate
  • The Hill: Democratic Senators Turn to GOP for Help in Reaching Conservatives on Climate Messaging
  • Vox: Ohio Just Passed the Worst Energy Bill of the 21st Century
  • Inslee profile pic

Political Climate is produced in partnership with the USC Schwarzenegger Institute.

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