mark hertsgaard

Independent Journalist & Author


Exxon’s Alleged Climate Lies Dwarf Big Tobacco’s

Exxon’s alleged lies about the danger its products pose to a livable climate have already cost companies and investors throughout the economy billions of dollars, with much worse to come. New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has subpoenaed the oil giant, but Wall Street remains silent. Why?… Read more


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Welcome Surprises Before Paris Climate Summit

This reporter has covered international climate negotiations since the Earth Summit in 1992, and they usually have disappointing outcomes. But the upcoming Paris summit may be different, judging from the surprising mix of good (and, yes, some bad) news I describe in The Nation:… Read more


Exxon Knew, Say New Investigative Reports

Guest hosting KALW public radio’s “Your Call” program, I interview journalists from the Los Angeles Times and Inside Climate News whose separate investigations revealed that ExxonMobil knew, from its own scientists, by the mid-1980s that climate change was real, dangerous and caused by burning carbon-based fuels. But the oil giant allegedly denied the truth to protect its profits. Hear how the journalists got one of the most important climate stories ever reported:… Read more

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Shell’s Arctic Retreat and Climate Activism

Think Shell’s retreat from oil drilling in the Arctic was just a function of low current oil prices? That’s how most mainstream media reports framed it. Do they have any real reporters on the business beat any more? By its own admission, Shell was also motivated by politics. Read my Daily Beast review of Wen Stephenson’s impassioned, beautifully written new book on the emerging climate justice movement to see how activism helped force Shell’s hand:… Read more

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Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde: Obama’s Two-Faced Climate Policy

Will the real Barack Obama please stand up? Like the fictional Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Obama from the day he was first elected president has repeatedly said and done impressive things about climate change one day only to turn around and say and do appalling things the next…. Read more

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2 Degrees Is Too Much, Says Blockbuster Hansen study

Sea level rise could make New York and other coastal cities uninhabitable in our children’s lifetimes, according to a blockbuster new study released this week by James Hansen, long one of the world’s foremost climate scientists, as I reported today in an exclusive for The Daily Beast:… Read more

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Latest Book


Hertsgaard’s latest book, HOT, describes how his five year old daughter and the rest of Generation Hot can cope with the massive climate impacts that are now inevitable. Packed with eyewitness reporting on existing solutions for "avoiding the unmanageable and managing the unavoidable," HOT shows how we all must think--and act--differently now in the fight against climate change. Read more

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About Mark

Called "one of America’s finest reporters" by Barbara Ehrenreich, Mark Hertsgaard is the author of six books that have been translated into sixteen languages, including Earth Odyssey and On Bended Knee. He has covered climate change, politics and the media for leading media outlets around the world, including Vanity Fair, The Nation, Time, The New Yorker, NPR, L’espresso, Die Zeit and Le Monde Diplomatique.