Global Climate Targets Are Under Threat by Secretly Planned “Carbon Bombs”

The world's biggest fossil fuel firms are quietly planning 195 projects that each would emit over a billion tons of carbon.

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What type of investment do you prefer to make?

Following last year’s UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, The Guardian did a five-month investigation piecing together as clear a picture as possible of planned future oil and gas exploration and production. They found that the world’s biggest fossil fuel firms are quietly planning 195 projects nicknamed carbon bombs, due to the fact that they would emit over a billion tons of carbon from start to finish. If they proceeded as planned, these 195 projects together would produce 646 billion tons of carbon emissions and make global climate targets all but impossible to achieve. Ethan breaks down The Guardian’s report, discusses why the economic interests of oil and gas companies aren’t aligned with those of the overall economy, and considers what comes next in this week’s “Tip of the Iceberg.”

**Correction: In the “Ask Me Anything” segment, Ethan mistakenly says that to have a 50:50 chance of containing global warming to 2°C, the world would be able to emit 1.5 trillion tons of carbon. The correct figure is 1.35 trillion tons.**

The Sweaty Penguin is presented by Peril and Promise: a public media initiative from The WNET Group in New York, reporting on the issues and solutions around climate change. You can learn more at

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Writer: Ethan Brown, Maxwell Pociask, Maddy Schmidt

Fact Checker: Hallie Cordingley

Editor: Frank Hernandez

Producers: Ethan Brown, Megan Crimmins, Shannon Damiano, Frank Hernandez

Ad Voiceover: Lindsay Cronin

Music: Brett Sawka

The opinions expressed in this podcast are those of the host and guests. They do not necessarily reflect the opinions or views of Peril and Promise or The WNET Group.

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The Sweaty Penguin
The Sweaty Penguin is a digital news source and podcast aiming to make environmental issues less overwhelming and politicized and more accessible and fun.


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