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Mary Robinson and Maeve Higgins host the Mothers of Invention podcast. Mothers of Invention

Most days, the news on climate can be tough. Carbon dioxide levels reaching new heights. Glaciers melting even faster than we thought. White House officials celebrating the prospect of an ice-free Arctic. Not a whole lot of good ways to spin these.

But here's the good news. There are a lot of smart and committed people working to solve this. And if you need a bit of hope, a bit of inspiration, we've got five podcasts with conversations and stories that'll light a fire inside, change how you think about the crisis, and get you ready to fight again.

Because the truth is, sometimes we all need it. Enjoy.

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Bhutan's Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay shares his country's mission to put happiness before economic growth and set a world standard for environmental preservation. TED / YouTube screenshot

Let's be real: Renewable energy is super cool. Harnessing virtually limitless energy from the natural world? Check. Without releasing dangerous carbon pollution into our atmosphere? Double check.

Around the world, cities, states, countries, and companies are making the switch to clean, renewable energy to help stop climate change. Better yet? It just makes good economic sense.

Here are five eye-opening TED Talks that show how renewables are taking over every corner of the world — from Bhutan to Costa Rica, back to Germany, and more.

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EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

The Climate Reality Project

In many places, the leaves have fallen and the first frosts have turned the air crisp. The days are getting shorter. Most birds are well on their way south, and the holidays are just around the corner. And in just a few weeks, on Dec. 3-4, we'll present our eighth annual global broadcast of 24 Hours of Reality.

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Campaign poster designed by Shepard Fairey. The Climate Reality Project

Sunday's dire report from the United Nations is not just a wake-up call for governments around the world to fight catastrophic climate change, it urges individual action as well.

On Tuesday, former Vice President Al Gore helped launch a new get-out-the-vote initiative to get youngsters to register and to back green policies and candidates at the polls.

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Government inaction on climate change and climate deniers were called out by former vice president Al Gore and Samoan prime minister Tuilaepa Sailele separately this week.

Gore voiced his sentiment during an interview released Wednesday with Fox 11's Good Day L.A. co-host Elex Michaelson. Sailele made the remarks at his speech Thursday in Australia. They each spoke about the harmful effects of global warming and called for immediate action.

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By Jaime Nack

"Where do I start?"

Whatever the forum, whatever the audience, it's always the first question I hear when I talk to people about sustainability and personal impact.

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What have you done for me lately?

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Pexels

Truly great films about the climate crisis are tough to come by. Allusions to environmental destruction are very familiar in the futuristic dystopias Hollywood churns out like clockwork, but they rarely get the science right—or they abandon it entirely in favor of skipping straight to some post-apocalyptic CGI extravaganza.

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The world is watching as Cape Town residents count the days (and drops) to Day Zero—when the city's tap run dry. The South African city is in the midst of its worst drought in history, and unless a substantial amount of rain falls in the coming months, it could become the first major city to run dry. Poorer citizens are already bearing the brunt of the water crisis, and all residents have been advised to limit their water consumption to only 50 liters, or 13.2 gallons a day. Think two-minute showers and reusing your bathing water to flush the toilet.

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After a long—and in some places very cold—winter, spring is almost here. And with its arrival comes one of our favorite things to do as the days get longer and sunnier.

What if we told you that you can make a major difference without leaving your own backyard? That's right, by simply rethinking how you garden, you can do your part to fight the climate crisis.

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Most people know Germany for things like its popular car manufactures Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz, its annual Oktoberfest—fun fact: Germany has 1,300 breweries and 5,000 different brew brands—and all those brilliant composers (Bach, Beethoven and Schumann, anyone?). But did you know the country is also a clean-energy superpower?

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