Show cover of Climate Rising

Climate Rising

Climate Rising is about the impact of climate change on business. It brings business and policy leaders and Harvard Business School faculty together to share insights about what businesses are doing, can do, and should do to confront climate change. It explores the many challenges and opportunities that climate change raises for managers, such as decisions about where they choose to locate, the technologies they develop and use, their strategies with respect to products, marketing, customer engagement, and policy—in other words, the full spectrum of business concerns.

Tracks

How Insurance Companies are Addressing Climate Risks
This episode in our adaptation series focuses climate change’s implications on the insurance industry. Claudine Blamey, Group Director of Sustainability at Aviva, describes how climate change evokes both transition risks and physical risks for insurance companies, and affects how insurance companies are assessing and pricing risk in their underwriting process, and influences their investment strategy. Claudine also describes innovative insurance products such as parametric and catastrophe insurance that are emerging to address natural disasters that are exacerbated by climate change. For resources and other episodes visit climaterising.org
37:48 10/04/2024
Building Climate - Resilient Cities and Infrastructure
This episode in our climate adaptation series features HBS Professor John Macomber. John discusses how companies and governments need to incorporate climate resilience as they develop and finance real estate and infrastructure to address the risks of flooding, wildfire, extreme heat, drought, and sea level rise. John describes “five R” options to address these risks—to reinforce, rebound, retreat, restrict, and rebuild—and highlights best practices from insurance companies and the governments of Amsterdam, Rotterdam, and Singapore. He also identifies entrepreneurial opportunities to foster adaptation and resilience. Climate Rising Host: Professor Mike Toffel, Faculty Chair, Business & Environment Initiative Guest: John Macomber, Senior Lecturer at Harvard Business School. For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org
46:13 27/03/2024
The Lightsmith Group’s Adaptation Investment Strategy
This episode continues our series on adaptation, and features Jay Koh who co-founded the Lightsmith Group, the first growth private equity firm focused on climate adaptation. Jay discusses the firm’s investment strategy, the sectors his firm invests in and their investment criteria process. He also shares thoughts on the role of public policy and offers career advice. Climate Rising Host: Professor Mike Toffel, Faculty Chair, Business & Environment Initiative  Guests: Jay Koh, Co-Founder and Managing Director of the Lightsmith Group For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org
63:42 13/03/2024
Visualizing our Changing Climate with Probable Futures
In this first episode of our series on adaptation, host Mike Toffel sits down with Spencer Glendon and Alison Smart of Probable Futures. They discuss how Probable Futures tools are educating decision makers to better understand how their organizations will experience climate change, and how adaptation and resilience requires a paradigm shift in planning decisions. They describe a five-step process managers can use to identify and manage adaptation risks posed by climate change. For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org
57:52 28/02/2024
Raízen’s Decarbonization Strategy
The bonus episode of the Climate Rising features an episode of HBR’s Cold Call podcast featuring a discussion on ethanol, a biofuel with a complex history and an uncertain future. Host Brian Kenny is joined by Professor Gunnar Trumbull and Paula Kovarsky from Raízen. As Brazil's top producer of sugar and ethanol and the world's premier ethanol trader, Raízen is at the forefront of biofuel innovation. The conversation delves into Raízen’s cutting-edge work in biofuels, the strategic choices behind advancing second-generation ethanol, and how these efforts contribute to global decarbonization initiatives. Guest/Host: Brian Kenny, Chief Marketing and Communications Officer, Harvard Business School and host of Cold Call. Gunnar Trumbull, Phillip Caldwell Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School. Paula Kovarsky, Vice President of Strategy & Sustainability at Raízen For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org Episode specific link
28:33 14/02/2024
Decarbonizing Industrial Processes with Material Science
This episode continues Climate Rising's hard-to-abate series, and features Shreya Dave, CEO and Co-founder of Via Separations. Shreya describes how her company is decarbonizing the industrial sector by using material science to create a much less energy intensive and cheaper approach to separate substances, a common step in many industrial processes. Shreya talks about her company's journey, the challenges of market adoption, and the strategic partnerships that have been pivotal. She also shares some career advice. Climate Rising Host: Professor Mike Toffel, Faculty Chair, Business & Environment Initiative Guest: Shreya Dave, CEO and Co-Founder Via Separations For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org.
44:03 31/01/2024
Decarbonizing Aviation with McKinsey
This episode in our hard-to-abate series features aviation expert Robin Riedel, a Partner at McKinsey & Company who co-leads the McKinsey Center for Future Mobility. Robin describes five approaches to decarbonize aviation: upgrading aircraft, improving operational efficiency, sustainable aviation fuel, other novel fuels and aircraft configurations, and carbon credits. We also learn about some McKinsey engagements on aviation decarbonization, and conclude with Robin’s career advice. Climate Rising Host: Professor Mike Toffel, Faculty Chair, Business & Environment Initiative  Guest:  Robin Riedel, Partner and co-head of the McKinsey Center for Future Mobility   For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org
58:18 17/01/2024
The Health Risks of Natural Gas Stoves
This bonus episode of Climate Rising features an episode from the Harvard Chan School of Public Health's podcast "Better Off" that explores the intersection of decarbonization and public health. While decarbonization requires shifting away from fossil fuels, this episode emphasizes the equally crucial health reasons to do so – especially for natural gas stoves. Tune in for a thoughtful conversation led by Anna Fisher-Pinkert of the Harvard Chan School of Public Health and her guests Brady Seals, Drew Michanowicz, and Jon Kung. Guest/Host: Anna Fisher-Pinkert, Director of Digital Strategy at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health Brady Seals, Manager of RMI’s Carbon-Free Buildings program Drew Michanowicz, senior scientist, PSE Healthy Energy Jon Kung, Chef For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org
21:54 03/01/2024
Sweden’s Northvolt Quest to Build the World’s Greenest EV Batteries
This bonus episode of Climate Rising features an episode of Harvard Business Review’s Cold Cast podcast with Brian Kenny interviewing HBS professor George Serafeim about his case on Northvolt, a Sweden-based start-up company producing batteries for Europe’s EV auto manufacturers. They'll discuss Northvolt’s efforts to build government partnerships, hire the right people, and attract financing in order to scale rapidly. Guest/Host: Brian Kenny, Chief Marketing and Communications Officer, Harvard Business School and host of Cold Call George Serafeim, Charles M. Williams Professor of Business Administration, Harvard Business School For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org.
32:27 20/12/2023
How Green Hydrogen can Decarbonize Hard-to-Abate Sectors
The third in our series on hard-to-abate sectors, this episode features Jacob Susman, CEO and co-founder of Ambient Fuels, a developer of green hydrogen projects. He describes how green hydrogen can help decarbonize hard-to-abate sectors and which applications are especially promising for green hydrogen solutions. Jacob also describes Ambient’s role in green hydrogen project and infrastructure development, provides career advice, and shares tips to attract early-stage financing. For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org   Climate Rising Host: Professor Mike Toffel, Faculty Chair, Business & Environment Initiative Guest: Jacob Susman, CEO and Co-founder at Ambient Fuels
43:10 06/12/2023
CarbonBuilt: Decarbonizing Concrete Blocks
The second episode of our hard-to-abate series features Rahul Shendure, CEO and Director at CarbonBuilt. The company has developed and commercialized a Carbon XPRIZE-winning technology to produce what it calls “ultra low carbon” concrete. We start with the basics of how concrete is such a high-emitting product, then describe how CarbonBuilt’s technology is reducing product costs and emissions by replacing cement with a combination of industrial waste materials and CO2 – often captured directly from industrial sources. Rahul also shares advice for those looking to build careers in climate, particularly in the start-up world. For transcripts and other resources, visit ​​climaterising.org  Climate Rising Host: Professor Mike Toffel, Faculty Chair, Business & Environment Initiative  Guest: Rahul Shendure, CEO and Director at CarbonBuilt.
36:32 22/11/2023
Einride: Decarbonizing Trucking with EVs, Automony, and Digitalization
This first episode of our hard-to-abate series features Linnéa Kornehed Falck, Einride's Founder, Deputy CEO and Board Member. Einride is launching a fleet of battery electric autonomous trucks, orchestrated via route-optimization software. We discuss how its fleet-based freight capacity-as-a-service business model seeks to disrupt the cargo trucking industry, and better serve customers while decarbonizing the sector. Linnéa also shares some advice for purpose-driven entrepreneurs. For transcripts and other resources, visit ​​climaterising.org  Climate Rising Host: Professor Mike Toffel, Faculty Chair, Business & Environment Initiative  Guest:  Linnéa Kornehed Falck, Founder, Deputy CEO and Board Member, Einride.
33:27 08/11/2023
How Sian Flowers Aims to Create a Low-Carbon Rose
This bonus episode of Climate Rising features Harvard Business Review’s Cold Cast podcast with Brian Kenny interviewing HBS professors Willy Shih and Mike Toffel about their teaching case about Kenya-based Sian Flowers. They discuss the company’s efforts to create a “low-carbon rose” by shipping them to their clients around the world by sea instead of by air without eroding their quality, and the effects this has on its production process.  For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org Guest/Host: ●      Brian Kenny, Chief Marketing and Communications Officer, Harvard Business School and host of Cold Call ●      Willy Shih, Robert and Jane Cizik Professor of Management Practice in Business Administration ●      Mike Toffel, Senator John Heinz Professor of Environmental Management
25:19 25/10/2023
Three MBA Summer Interns in Business and Climate Change
The final episode of our 2023 back-to-business school series features three Harvard Business School MBA students: Nabig Chaudhry, Mitch Hirai, and Kamya Jagadish. They describe how they spent the summer interning in climate-related businesses, from impact investing to a climate tech incubator and climate risk analytics. They also discuss what sparked their interest in the field and how they stay current on information and trends to explore career opportunities in business and climate change For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org Climate Rising Host: Professor Mike Toffel, Faculty Chair, Business & Environment Initiative Guests: ●      Nabig Chaudhry, HBS MBA Class of 2024 ●      Mitch Hirai, HBS MBA Class of 2024 ●      Kamya Jagadish, HBS MBA/Harvard Kennedy School MPP Class of 2024
35:36 11/10/2023
How Boards Can Drive Climate Performance
As part of our 2023 back-to-business school series, this episode features a session from Harvard’s Climate Action Week in May 2023. Moderated by HBS Prof. George Serafeim, the panel includes Carter Roberts, President & CEO of World Wildlife Fund, HBS professor Deb Spar, Bonita Stewart, Board Partner at Gradient Ventures, and Lauren Taylor Wolfe, Cofounder & Managing Partner of Impactive Capital. They discuss how companies and their boards can use accountability and transparency to drive climate performance. For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org Climate Rising Host: Professor Mike Toffel, Faculty Chair, Business & Environment Initiative Moderator/Panelists: ●      George Serafeim, Charles M. Williams Professor of Business Administration, Harvard Business School ●      Carter Roberts, President & CEO, World Wildlife Fund ●      Debora L. Spar, Jaime and Josefina Chua Tiampo Professor of Business Administration; Senior Associate Dean for Business and Global Society; Board Director, Thermo Fisher Scientific ●      Bonita Stewart, Board Partner, Gradient Ventures ●      Lauren Taylor Wolfe, Cofounder & Managing Partner, Impactive Capital
47:05 27/09/2023
How Arcos Dorados is Addressing Climate Change in Latin America
Today’s episode is the first in our 2023 back-to-business school series. The episode features Gabriel Serber, Vice President of Social Impact and Sustainable Development, Arcos Dorados, the largest McDonald’s franchise in the world. He discusses how Arcos Dorados designs and implements climate solutions across the 20 Latin American and Caribbean countries where they operate, the vast cultural diversity across the region, and how his work fits into the larger McDonald’s corporate climate goals For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org Climate Rising Host: Professor Mike Toffel, Faculty Chair, Business & Environment Initiative Guest: Gabriel Serber, Vice President of Social Impact and Sustainable Development, Arcos Dorados
38:54 13/09/2023
An Investor’s Perspective on Corporate Climate Action
Today’s episode in our corporate net zero climate series features Paul Bodnar, Director of Sustainable Finance, Industry, and Diplomacy, Bezos Earth Fund, and former Global Head of Sustainable Investing at BlackRock. Paul discusses how investors approach the complex web of weighing climate priorities with fiduciary responsibilities. He also talks about his career in the private, public, and nonprofit sectors and where he thinks the next big climate-related investment priorities will be. For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org Climate Rising Host: Professor Mike Toffel, Faculty Chair, Business & Environment Initiative Guest: Paul Bodnar, Director of Sustainable Finance, Industry, and Diplomacy, Bezos Earth Fund
56:03 30/08/2023
Helping Consumers Decarbonize their Purchases
Today’s episode in our corporate net zero climate series features HBS alumna Sanchali Pal, Founder and CEO of Commons, an app created to help consumers make more climate-friendly purchasing decisions. Sanchali discusses why she chose an entrepreneurial pathway out of busine---ss school and what inspired her to focus on the power of consumers to drive corporate climate action. She also talks about building a startup and raising funds and offers advice for those seeking to work in business and climate change. For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org Climate Rising Host: Professor Mike Toffel, Faculty Chair, Business & Environment Initiative Guest: Sanchali Pal, Founder and CEO of Commons
45:55 16/08/2023
Going Carbon Negative at Microsoft
Formerly Microsoft’s Chief Environmental Officer, and now Chief Sustainability Officer & Senior Managing Director at Haveli Investments, Lucas Joppa discusses the strategies and tools Microsoft developed to meet its ambitious carbon negative goals, including setting an internal price on carbon, restructuring their corporate governance, and funding innovative climate technology solutions. He also tells us why he thinks climate finance is entering its most consequential decade. ---- Climate Rising Host: Professor Mike Toffel, Faculty Chair, Business & Environment Initiative Guest: Lucas Joppa, Chief Sustainability Officer & Senior Managing Director, Haveli Investments For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org.
40:13 02/08/2023
Managing Electricity to Meet Net Zero Targets
In this episode, Melissa Lott, Director of Research and Senior Research Scholar, Center on Global Energy Policy at Columbia University, and Michael Webber, Josey Centennial Professor in Energy Resources and Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin, discuss how companies can decarbonize their electricity when pursuing net zero climate goals, from increased efficiency to electrification to generating their own carbon-free electricity, and the pros and cons of these pathways. Climate Rising Host: Professor Mike Toffel, Faculty Chair, Business & Environment Initiative Guests: Melissa Lott, Director of Research and Senior Research Scholar, Center on Global Energy Policy, Columbia University Michael Webber, Josey Centennial Professor in Energy Resources and Professor of Mechanical Engineering, University of Texas at Austin
40:35 19/07/2023
How Science Based Climate Targets Work
Today’s episode features Alberto Carrillo Pineda, Co-Founder and Chief Technical Officer of the Science Based Targets Initiative explains how they help companies and financial institutions design verifiable and achievable climate targets, and how they assess and validate those targets. He also discusses how the SBTi is transitioning from focusing on technical assistance and assessments to a standard-setting organization. Company Resources: The Science Based Targets initiative How science-based targets work Climate Rising Host: Professor Mike Toffel, Faculty Chair, Business & Environment Initiative Guest: Alberto Carrillo Pineda, Co-Founder and and Chief Technical Officer, Science Based Targets Initiative For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org
33:10 05/07/2023
BCG Climate Vision 2050: Sustainability at 36,000 Feet
For the second episode in our series on corporate net zero programs, we’re sharing an episode on airline decarbonization from the Climate Vision 2050 podcast produced by the consulting firm Boston Consulting Group. This episode sets up a scenario in 2050 where the industry relies on liquid nitrogen, sustainable aviation fuels, electric aircraft, and blending-wing body planes, coupled with present-day experts who explain the changes. Link to original podcast: BCG Climate Vision 2050 (“Sustainability at 36,000 feet” episode) Climate Rising Host: Professor Mike Toffel, Faculty Chair, Business & Environment Initiative
25:26 21/06/2023
Beyond Net Zero: How Seventh Generation Plans to Achieve Real Zero Carbon
In this first episode in a new series on companies setting and meeting net zero climate targets, Ashley Orgain, Chief Impact Officer at Seventh Generation, discusses why this home care products company decided to set a real zero climate goal instead of net zero, and how they plan to achieve it. She also describes how Seventh Generation is going beyond a carbon footprint to measure its carbon fingerprints that touch every aspect of their business, from banking to creative services. For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org. Climate Rising Host: Professor Mike Toffel, Faculty Chair, Business & Environment Initiative Guest: Ashley Orgain, Chief Impact Officer, Seventh Generation
35:49 07/06/2023
How BMW is Driving Decarbonization
This bonus episode of Climate Rising features Harvard Business Review’s Cold Cast podcast with Brian Kenny interviewing HBS professor Shirley Lu on BMW Group’s decarbonization strategy, which is the subject of a new case study that Shirley wrote with HBS colleagues George Serafeim and Mike Toffel. They discuss why BMW is focusing on reducing vehicle lifecycle emissions, and why the company has so far avoided setting a phase-out date for internal combustion engine BMWs. For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org. Guest/Host: ●      Brian Kenny, Chief Marketing and Communications Officer, Harvard Business School and host of Cold Call ●      Shirley Lu, Assistant Professor, Harvard Business School
24:03 24/05/2023
Can We Really Engineer a Climate Fix?
Today, as a bonus, we’re sharing an episode of the Skydeck podcast that features interviews with HBS alumni where they share lessons learned and their life experiences. We thought this episode of Skydeck would be particularly interesting to you because it focuses on carbon capture technology. This is one of three Skydeck episodes on this topic. And for even more, check out Climate Rising’s own episodes on carbon capture, released in the fall of 2022.  To hear more about the Skydeck podcast visit www.alumni.hbs.edu/skydeck Visit climaterising.org for more information. Climate Rising host: Mike Toffel Skydeck host: Dan Morrell
12:15 17/05/2023
How OPower Uses Behavioral Science & AI to Reduce Energy Demand
In this sixth episode in our series on climate change and artificial intelligence (AI), Paul McDonald, Senior Director, Opower Product Strategy & Marketing at Oracle Energy and Water, discusses how OPower uses behavioral science and AI to help utility customers reduce their energy use. He describes why saving electricity benefits both customers and utilities, and shares his advice for those interested in careers in business and climate. For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org. Climate Rising Host: Professor Mike Toffel, Faculty Chair, Business & Environment Initiative Guest: Paul McDonald, Senior Director, Opower Product Strategy & Marketing at Oracle Energy and Water
55:36 10/05/2023
Climate Adaptation & Supply Chains: Everstream Analytics’ AI Solution
In this fifth episode in our series on climate change and artificial intelligence (AI), Jim Hayden, Chief Data Scientist at Everstream Analytics, discusses how they use AI and machine learning to help mitigate risk and optimize opportunities for supply chain logistics in a changing climate and in the face of extreme weather events, such as heat stress, drought, and temperature extremes. And he shares his advice for those interested in careers in business and climate. For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org. Climate Rising Host: Professor Mike Toffel, Faculty Chair, Business & Environment Initiative Guest: Jim Hayden, Chief Data Scientist, Everstream Analytics
36:42 26/04/2023
Ideon: Mining the Energy Transition
In this fourth episode in our series on climate change and artificial intelligence (AI), Gary Agnew, CEO and Co-founder of Ideon Technologies Inc, and Kim Lawrence, VP, Talent and Customer Experience, discuss how they use energy from supernovas, sensors, satellites, and machine learning to improve the efficiency and reduce the environmental impact of mining for minerals critical to the clean energy transition. They also share their advice for those interested in careers in business and climate. For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org Climate Rising Host: Professor Mike Toffel, Faculty Chair, Business & Environment Initiative  Guests: ●      Gary Agnew, CEO and Co-founder, Ideon Technologies Inc ●      Kim Lawrence, VP, Talent and Customer Experience
40:44 12/04/2023
WeaveGrid's AI Solution for EV-to-Grid Integration
In this third episode in our series on climate change and artificial intelligence (AI), Apoorv Bhargava, CEO and co-founder of WeaveGrid, a company that uses artificial intelligence and machine learning to help electric utilities optimize the integration of electric vehicles into a clean energy grid. He describes how they approach the intersection of transportation and energy as a systems problem, and he shares his advice for those interested in careers in business and climate. For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org. Climate Rising Host: Professor Mike Toffel, Faculty Chair, Business & Environment Initiative Guest: Apoorv Bhargava, CEO and Co-founder, WeaveGrid
42:56 29/03/2023
Google’s AI Approach to Climate Change
In this second episode in our series on climate change and AI, Yossi Matias, Vice President, Engineering & Research at Google, and the founding Managing Director of Google Center in Israel, explains how Google uses AI and Machine Learning to tackle some of the biggest challenges for climate mitigation and adaptation. He describes how Google uses partnerships and collaboration to innovate in the climate space, and shares his advice for those interested in careers in business and climate. For transcripts and other resources, visit climaterising.org. Climate Rising Host: Professor Mike Toffel, Faculty Chair, Business & Environment Initiative Guest: ●      Yossi Matias, Vice President, Engineering & Research at Google, and the founding Managing Director of Google Center in Israel
36:14 15/03/2023

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