Oeko-Institut launches science and sustainable transformations podcast

"Long-haul” to environmental podcasts

Today sees the release of the first episode of the Oeko-Institut podcast: “All change, please! The science and sustainable transformations podcast”. Listeners can expect in-depth information on a variety of issues relating to the energy, transport and resource transitions. The podcast features conversations with the institute’s researchers, who will be explaining how to manage each of these transitions, which challenges have to be overcome and what kind of policy frameworks need to developed.

“Our aim in our podcast is to look at issues in detail but without being too nerdy,” says Mandy Schossig, describing the focus of the new offering. Schossig co-hosts the podcast and heads the Oeko-Institut’s Public Relations and Communications Department. Six episodes are planned, each featuring a guest expert from the Oeko-Institut to talk about a topic in-depth.

Click here for the Oeko-Institut podcast

Episode 1: Hydrogen – the liquid gold of the energy transition

The first episode, entitled “Why is hydrogen the liquid gold of the energy transition?”, features Dr Felix Christian Matthes, the Oeko-Institut’s Research Coordinator for Energy and Climate Policy and a member of the German National Hydrogen Council. During his guest appearance, he provides an overview of key issues relating to the use of hydrogen as an energy source. He clears up some popular misconceptions – such as how much hydrogen can be produced in Germany – and outlines the political debate behind the development of the hydrogen strategy.

Matthes makes it clear that the goal of greenhouse neutrality in Germany can only be reached with hydrogen, making it the fourth pillar of the energy transition – after energy efficiency, renewables and electrification – and a key element of a sustainable energy supply. He cautions against missing the opportunities for technological change and failing to set the right policy course.

“Don’t let it trickle away due to too many stakeholder interests”

This must include clearly limiting the use of hydrogen to specific sectors. As Matthes explains, hydrogen is a viable option for the iron and steel industry and heavy goods transport, but not for cars or supplying heating for buildings. “We need to focus the hydrogen strategy on these two areas of application,” he says. “We should not be squandering political capital or hard cash on a plethora of projects. If we do so, the third wave of the hydrogen debate will simply trickle away – stranded by too many stakeholder interests.”

Expert knowledge instead of conventional wisdom

The podcast is aimed at a wide audience from government, academia, the media and NGOs with an interest in politics and the environment. The host is Nadine Kreutzer, a journalist and moderator whose specialist interests include sustainability issues. In each episode, she talks to Mandy Schossig and a guest expert about current issues in the transition to sustainability. Each conversation lasts 45-60 minutes – making this part of a new “long-haul” approach to environmental podcasts.

Episodes 2 to 6

The following topics are planned for upcoming episodes of “All change, please! The science and sustainable transformations podcast”:

May 2021: “Aviation and climate” with Jakob Graichen

July 2021: “Final storage and citizen participation” with Julia Mareike Neles

August 2021: “Extending the product lifecycle” with Siddharth Prakash

September 2021: “Social justice in the energy transition” with Dr Katja Schumacher

November 2021: “International climate negotiations” with Anke Herold

The podcast is available from all the usual podcast services providers, including Apple Podcasts and Spotify.

Click here for the podcast, show notes and other background information on the Oeko-Institut website.