Episode 9:

Did Florida Ban Climate Change? The Amazing Untold story of the Climate Change Story of the Year!

Guest: Tristram Korten

Broadcast September 11, 2016

America Adapts talks with Tristram Korten, investigative reporter from Florida who was responsible for the most covered climate change story of the year!  Learn the specific details on how Tristram broke the climate change story of the year, uncovering the fact that the Florida Governor had banned the use of climate change for state employees. Hear the untold stories of who was involved; what the ultimate fall out was from this story, and what it means for the future of Florida.  This amazing story was covered by almost every major news outlet, from Huffington PostWashington Post, the New Republic, New York MagazineUSATodayTimeCNN, and Newsweek; the international media also got involved, where Tristram describes when the French media conducted a surreal and humorous interview with him.  In addition, The Daily Showand even President Obama referenced this groundbreaking story.  Also, Doug and Tristram discuss the fall out of from the story and did it lead to any changes in government policy; they also discuss the ethics of government officials to share key information and the challenges of dealing with government employees.Doug and Tristram then dig into the challenges of covering climate change stories in the popular media. Do reporters have the necessary skills and expertise to cover climate change, and specifically adapting to climate change? Doug and Tristram also discuss: the state of small and medium newspapers and their ability to function in the internet age; Tristram’s favorite news reporters; how the Republican party use to be the source of innovative climate change leadership;  the Zika virus and the future of Florida and the role of politics in climate change planning. This discussion is fundamentally about science integrity and the role of politics in that process. Yes, we cover a lot. So listen in as Tristram and Doug go play by play and recreate what exactly happened that led to the climate change story of the year!


Additional Resources from Tristram:


Florida Officials Ban Climate Change

A Tale of Two Agencies

Funny Links related to story!

Song based on story.

Larry Wilmore

Article mentioned in Adaptation and Wine Power Hour.

How Climate Change Beliefs among U.S. Teachers Do and Do Not Translate to Students


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2 thoughts on “September 11, 2016”

max · February 22, 2018 at 2:23 am

I enjoyed this podcast but I was unhappy to hear Tristram say “we wouldn’t want to get too deep in questioning the science” when adapting it to films. The role of the communicator should not just be translating the model and the data into visuals – but also translating the uncertainty and probability of the model.

You struggle with the boundary into science fiction – the truth is, the science IS fiction to a certain extent. Models are subjective, they may not account for changes in our behavior, etc. If we teach this science as fact, we instantly project barriers to adaptation (this is our capacity to deal with the problem, there is only so much we can do). Barriers kill any sense of individual agency.

It is important to understand the science so that we can be reflexive about what it really means. And what we can do to change its course.

The Best Climate Change Podcasts ~ The Climate Advisor · August 20, 2017 at 6:02 pm

[…] show on the “banning” of climate change in Florida by Governor Rick Scott was especially good.  Another great podcast was Community Based Adaptation – Under African […]

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