Degrees Episode 06: Bill Weihl

Why employees are key for a hopeful future

Leading the sustainability efforts at Google and Facebook might seem like dream jobs, but for Bill Weihl there were still nights when he couldn’t sleep. Acutely aware of the narrowing window to avoid the worst effects of climate change, Bill was haunted by a burning question: how could he create more change, faster? Thus was born “Climate Voice”, his new initiative designed to empower employees of any company to be agents of change… particularly around influencing public policy.

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Show Notes
  • 1:32 – Why Bill felt the need to leave the tech giants: public policy wasn’t a priority
  • 2:46 – The need for outside pressure to push for policy
  • 3:23 – Most companies aren’t making climate a top priority for their lobbying.
  • 4:10 – On how “silence” isn’t neutrality—it’s complicity
  • 4:43 – How one person—with any job title—can make a difference
  • 6:13 – Climate Voice gives people the opportunity to not have to go it alone
  • 6:47 – How  the LGTBQ movement was the inspiration for Climate Voice
  • 7:57 – How employees drove corporate action on the North Carolina Bathroom Bill (another blueprint for Climate Voice)
  • 9:38 – Employees and students have power over corporate action
  • 10:26 – We’re spending our “carbon budget” way too fast. Action is needed now!
  • 11:33 – Achieving scale is the key to success: even “cheap” climate solutions aren’t being deployed fast enough
  • 12:29 – The political balance of power is completely out of whack, prohibiting success at scale
  • 13:00 – On the Biden and Harris administration: this coming year is the time for companies to go all in
  • 13:45 – Bill’s “personal Board of Directors”
  • 14: 55 – Getting guidance on environmental justice
  • 15:22 – How to keep pushing on in the face of adversity: we can create a “wonderful future”, but only if we keep innovating, investing, and the key accelerant: public policy
Dig Deeper

Want to learn more about Climate Voice and what you can do at your company? Check out these links:

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