Who’s to Blame for the Climate Crisis? Journalist Amy Westervelt Is on the Case

Who is to blame for the climate crisis? 

For some, the answer to this question is a lament over the inherent greed of human nature. For award-winning investigative journalist and podcaster Amy Westervelt, the answer is perhaps the biggest true-crime story of all time. The creator of the podcasts Drilled and Damages has made a career out of dismantling the idea that there’s an amorphous “we” responsible for the destabilization of the Earth’s climate and instead pointing out who knew what, when, and paid who to cover it up. Now, she’s launching a global network of reporters all focused on holding the individuals and organizations that delay climate action to account. 

“You cannot solve a problem if you don’t understand the actual root causes of that problem,” Westervet told EcoWatch. “And the root causes of this problem are not an innate human desire to over consume.”

20 Years of Climate Accountability 

The August 29 launch of Drilled Global, as well as the 10th season of Drilled, were only the latest milestones in Westervelt’s extensive reporting record. Her written journalism has appeared in The Guardian, The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Post, among other outlets. She is also the executive producer of Critical Frequency, a podcast network headed by female journalists launched in 2017. The next year, she began the podcast Drilled — a true-crime style podcast about the climate crisis. In 2019, she started media-criticism focused Hot Take with fellow female climate writer Mary Annaïse Heglar (which was canceled in 2022). 2021 was a busy year that saw her launching Rigged, a podcast about the history of disinformation, co-hosting and helping to report a climate-themed season of Scene on Radio called The Repair, and heading up the production and reporting team of This Land S2, which focused on tribal sovereignty and was nominated for a Peabody Award the next year. In 2022, she started her most recent podcast Damages, which focuses on climate lawsuits and serves as the legal drama to Drilled’s crime thriller. Her work has won her various awards including the 2015 Rachel Carson award for women greening journalism, the 2019 Online News Association award for excellence in audio journalism, and the 2021 and 2023 Covering Climate Now best radio podcast series awards for Drilled and Damages respectively.