mark hertsgaard

Independent Journalist & Author


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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Do you love San Francisco? (radio interview)

Whether you live near or far, anyone who loves San Francisco should enjoy this interview I did with my friend Gary Kamiya, author of Cool Gray City of Love: 49 Views of San Francisco, which has been topping Bay Area best-seller lists. The one-hour interview was done live on stage at the Commonwealth Club and aired on public radio station KALW, 91.7FM:… Read more

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Letting polluters off the hook

by Mark HertsgaardMarketplace, May 03, 2007 (Host intro): The group that’s been issuing a series of reports on global warming is due out with its third installment tomorrow. And as happened with editions one and two, negotiations are going right down to the final hours. <!–more–> The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is meeting in Bangkok, Thailand trying to iron out the differences. And over here, Congress is expected to pass some kind of global warming bill this year. But commentator Mark Hertsgaard worries lawmakers might wind up rewarding the very companies that have resisted regulations in the past. (Mark Hertsgaard): Unlike lead or asbestos, we can’t just ban greenhouse gases. That would shut down America’s factories and vehicles overnight. But if we put… Read more


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The Cost-Benefit On Global Warming

by Mark HertsgaardMarketplace, Oct 27, 2006 (Host intro) The Kyoto Protocol on global warming doesn’t expire for another six years. But the British government says we have to start planning for 2012 right now. There’s a report set to come out in London Monday. Britain’s chief economist will say whatever it costs now to change our business practices will still be cheaper than the long-run economic impacts of climate change. Commentator Mark Hertsgaard says there’s a new economic logic at work. <!–more–> (Mark Hertsgaard) When European journalists asked President Bush a year and half ago why he refused to sign the Kyoto Protocol, he said: “Because it would wreck our economy.” Well, industrial giants have been proving the president wrong ever since. British Petroleum… Read more


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Blair’s Nuclear Dream

by Mark HertsgaardMarketplace, Jul 13, 2006 (Host intro) Energy security will also be on the G-8 agenda this weekend. Russian President Putin and George Bush have urged endorsement of nuclear power. Earlier this week, Britain‘s Tony Blair also came out for nuclear. But commentator Mark Hertsgaard says there‘s a big catch in Blair‘s nuclear plan, one that could settle the question of whether nuclear makes sense as a response to global warming. … <!–more–> (Mark Hertsgaard) … The catch is that Britain will not subsidize nuclear power. Private investors alone must pay to build and eventually dismantle any new nuclear plants. They also must help pay to dispose of radioactive waste. This no-subsidy pledge amounts to a revolution in nuclear economics…. Read more


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The Profits of Global Warming

by Mark HertsgaardMarketplace, May 04, 2006 Denial can get expensive. Just think back to the oil shock of 1973. Despite soaring gas prices, auto executives insisted that American consumers would never drive smaller cars. So, the Japanese got busy and eventually grabbed half of the US market. <!–more–> Today, its denial of global warming thats threatening US jobs and profits. Global warming is transforming the business risks and opportunities facing every company in the world. Toyota and Honda are far ahead in hybrid car sales. And US firms are losing out in other sectors too. Our solar and wind power manufacturers once led the world. Now, we trail the Germans, Danes, and even the Spanish. In February, the E-U, not the U-S, signed a… Read more


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Latest Book


By now, almost everyone knows what Edward Snowden did: leak top secret documents revealing that the US government was spying on hundreds of millions of people around the world. But if you want to know why Snowden did it, the way he did it, you need to know the stories of two other men.

The first is Thomas Drake, who blew the whistle on the very same surveillance ten years before Snowden did and got crushed. The other is The Third Man, a former senior Pentagon official who comes forward in this book for the first time to describe how his superiors repeatedly broke the law to punish Drakeā€”and unwittingly taught Snowden how to evade their clutches.

Pick up your copy at: | Barnes & Noble

About Mark

Independent journalist Mark Hertsgaard is the author of seven books that have been translated into sixteen languages, including Bravehearts: Whistle Blowing in the Age of Snowden; HOT: Living Through the Next Fifty Years on Earth; and A Day in the Life: The Music and Artistry of the Beatles. He has reported from twenty-five countries about politics, culture and the environment for leading outlets, including The Guardian, Der Spiegel, Vanity Fair, The New Yorker, Time, Mother Jones, NPR, the BBC and The Nation, where is the environment correspondent. He lives in San Francisco.