Isabelle Anguelovski-Theoretical Perspectives on Environmental Inequalities

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Theoretical Perspectives on Environmental Inequalities

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  • See Iris Young: injustices are lack of recognition of identity of individuals (women don’t get heard) and groups (IP and their claims for cultural survival and sovereignty). Differences illustrated in new social mvts around race, gender, and sexuality lack of recognition impairs people in their positive understanding of self, an understanding acquired by intersubjective means = is a form of oppression. mis or malrecognition is a cultural and institutional form of injustice. need to eliminate institutionalized domination and oppression. Need to eliminate dehumanization. Groups need to be recognized for their particular distinctiveness (Taylor) – politics of difference (not only equal dignity of all) See also Honneth: three kinds of disrespect: violation of the body, denial of rights, and denigration of ways of life --> indiv. Must be fully free of physical threats, offered complete and equal pol. Rights, and have their distinguishing cult. Traditions free from various forms of disparagement. --> Need for developing self-esteem, voice, and self-empowerment for both indiv. And groups to reach a sense of efficacy in the pol. Process. Social mvts are responses to disrespect and misrecognition (shift from individual to collective community)
  • demands for broader and more authentic public participation are seen as the tool to achieve distribu. Justice and pol. Recognition. For Young: justice means the elimination of institutionalized domination and oppression towards democratic decision-making procedures. --> increased participation can address issues of distribution and cultural misrecognition. Focus on realizing democratic participation in env. And community decision making on env. Decisions. Cf. First National People of Color Env. Leadership Conf in 1991: public policy must be based on mutual respect and justice for all people. Right to participate at all levels as equal partners. CCL Interplay of Equity, Recognition and Participation in EJ: these 3 concepts must be fully integrated. The 3 notions of J must be also interrelated --> direct relation bt/ a lack of recognition and env. Degradation and lack of participation in pol. Process. --> one must have recognition to have real participation; one must have real participation in order to get ral equity, and further equity would make more participation possible and finally further recognition.
  • My comment: Question of the relation bt/ context and list of capabilities is not clear. Who determines what is "fully functionning"? According to each criteria?
  • When justice is achieved, then capital moves… Continuous restructuring of spatial reconfiguration for capital produces spatial injustice)
  • Ecological disorganization and environmental inequality and racism are therefore fundamental to the project of modern nation building.
  • 4) In Lat Am, despite official and popular claims that mestizaje and assimilation represent democratizing or equalizing forces, whiteness is privileged in LA societies, and is the essential ingredit ot obtain social, employment, and education opp in a white-dominated world. Disagrees with the idea that race is marginal or irrelevant, arguing that it is a key variable for EJ in the region. The system of colonization and post-indepedence years have created a discourse where indigenous people are lower citizens, incapable of being going stewards and good producers of the land. In the 1960s and beyond, powerful multinational agro companies have ousted native producers and replaced their trad. Agricultural system with intensive agro-oriented monoculture activity (Sundberg in Carruthers 2008)
  • When justice is achieved, then capital moves… Continuous restructuring of spatial reconfiguration for capital produces spatial injustice)
  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_g-X8GNBYCM
  • http://www.ideastream.org/news/feature/30314 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_g-X8GNBYCM
  • Social metabolism : Throughput of energy and material flows in a society. We put a conflict over oil in the context of global consumption of oil. We study the driver of a particular conflict.
  • A new pipeline was inaugurated in 2002 by Occidental Petroleum in El Oriente, which doubles the capacity from the Amazon to terminals on the Pacific Coast. Occidental Petroleum hopes to boost production from 70,000 to 100,000 barrels a day from its new Eden oil field, about 70 miles south of Lago Agrio. The main complex rises out of the rain forest, a mass of shiny pipes and green tanks the size of several football fields. It was designed like an offshore oil platform so as to take up the smallest space possible. All power lines were buried to prevent animals from being electrocuted. Rainwater that falls on the site is filtered and cleaned. Ecuador's Environment Ministry and groups such as the Amazon Defense Front agree with Occidental that Eden is one of the most environmentally friendly oil facilities in Ecuador. "It had a high cost, but it's the most responsible thing to do," said Fernando Granizo, Eden's field manager. Some oil corporations are actively pursuing overseas projects that can be marketed as "environmentally-friendly." Recent oil industry publications have also encouraged its members to become more "community-conscious" by ensuring that new concession contracts provide revenues that benefit the entire population and not just select government officials with secret bank accounts. Regarding the Tintaya case, in July1999, a Dialogue Table was created between communities affected by the Tintaya Copper Mine in Peru and BHP-Billiton, the Australian-English corporation operating the mine. Community leaders from the villages surrounding the Tintaya copper mine demanded that the company open up a "transparent process of negotiation ”. The dialogue process aims to deal with the issues of greatest concern for the communities' inhabitants: the mechanisms used by the mining company to acquire land; environmental contamination that affects the small communities located around the mine; and reparation for human rights violations. The Tintaya Mesa de Diàlogo has met on seven occasions since February 2002 and has formed four work commissions that attend to the following areas in more detail: land, environment, sustainable development, and human rights. This dialogue process force the responsible parties to take action. This process has helped the people to achieve real change for themselves in terms of their relationship with the company. Now, the company goes to the people themselves to resolve the problems at the mine site. Trust and confidence is being built through the dialogue process.
  • A new pipeline was inaugurated in 2002 by Occidental Petroleum in El Oriente, which doubles the capacity from the Amazon to terminals on the Pacific Coast. Occidental Petroleum hopes to boost production from 70,000 to 100,000 barrels a day from its new Eden oil field, about 70 miles south of Lago Agrio. The main complex rises out of the rain forest, a mass of shiny pipes and green tanks the size of several football fields. It was designed like an offshore oil platform so as to take up the smallest space possible. All power lines were buried to prevent animals from being electrocuted. Rainwater that falls on the site is filtered and cleaned. Ecuador's Environment Ministry and groups such as the Amazon Defense Front agree with Occidental that Eden is one of the most environmentally friendly oil facilities in Ecuador. "It had a high cost, but it's the most responsible thing to do," said Fernando Granizo, Eden's field manager. Some oil corporations are actively pursuing overseas projects that can be marketed as "environmentally-friendly." Recent oil industry publications have also encouraged its members to become more "community-conscious" by ensuring that new concession contracts provide revenues that benefit the entire population and not just select government officials with secret bank accounts. Regarding the Tintaya case, in July1999, a Dialogue Table was created between communities affected by the Tintaya Copper Mine in Peru and BHP-Billiton, the Australian-English corporation operating the mine. Community leaders from the villages surrounding the Tintaya copper mine demanded that the company open up a "transparent process of negotiation ”. The dialogue process aims to deal with the issues of greatest concern for the communities' inhabitants: the mechanisms used by the mining company to acquire land; environmental contamination that affects the small communities located around the mine; and reparation for human rights violations. The Tintaya Mesa de Diàlogo has met on seven occasions since February 2002 and has formed four work commissions that attend to the following areas in more detail: land, environment, sustainable development, and human rights. This dialogue process force the responsible parties to take action. This process has helped the people to achieve real change for themselves in terms of their relationship with the company. Now, the company goes to the people themselves to resolve the problems at the mine site. Trust and confidence is being built through the dialogue process.
  • Isabelle Anguelovski-Theoretical Perspectives on Environmental Inequalities

    1. 1. Theoretical Perspectives onEnvironmental Inequalities Isabelle Anguelovski, UAB-ICTA July, 3, 2012
    2. 2. Multiple dimensions ofEnvironmental (In)justices
    3. 3. Justice as DistributionEnvironmental Injustice: Unequal division of environmentalbads, risks, and goods  This must be addressedRawls: Justice is the appropriate division of social advantages Need for more social redistribution and equityWalzer: Different things are valued differently by people, which means that the very criteria for distribution will differ according to how we value things Distributive Sphere (conceptions of Justice are limited in place and time)
    4. 4. Justice as RecognitionIris Marion Young: Injustices exist because of a lack of recognition of individuals (i.e., women) and groups (i.e., African Americans, indigenous people) This lack of recognition impairs people in their positive understanding of themselves – oppression and dehumanization Honneth: Three kinds of disrespect: violation of the body, denial of rights, and denigration of ways of lifeNeed for developing self-esteem, voice, and self-empowerment for individuals and groupsPeople must be recognized for their particular distinctiveness(Politics of difference as defined by Taylor)
    5. 5. Justice as Procedure Injustices stem from a lack of voice in decision-making andparticipation Young: Need to eliminate institutionalized domination and oppression and promote democratic decision-making procedures. Enhanced participation can address issues of distribution and cultural misrecognition. Conclusion: There is an interplay of Equity, Recognitionand Participation in Environmental Justice: These 3 concepts must be fully integrated. The 3 notions of J must be also interrelated
    6. 6. Justice as CapabilitiesFocus on individual agency, functioning, and wellbeing (Amartya Sen, Martha Nussbaum)Persons opportunities to do and be what they choosein the context of a given societyFocus on individual agency, functioning, and well-being.
    7. 7. Environmental Injustices: Processes and Actors
    8. 8. Social Metabolism and Global TradeGlobalization of extraction and productionTreadmill of production: Continued need of the capitalisteconomy for investment to generate goods for sale on themarket, which puts increasing pressure on naturalresources and increases social inequalitiesLife cycle of products difficult to trackRole of capital and its movement/relocationContinuous restructuring of spatial reconfiguration forcapitalCycles of capitalization and development withdesinvestment and abandonFailed transnational schemes
    9. 9. Individual Behavior of CorporationsLobbying and political collusionUnfair labor practicesLow environmental standardsLack of consultation of affected communitiesPurchase of small businesses by largecorporations
    10. 10. Role of the StateNational political projects: colonization of remote regions Rebuilding economyLack of regulation of env. and labor issuesNot adequate and democratic forms of decision-makingWeak monitoring and enforcement agenciesMulti scale policies: Local policies (ex. Zoning laws favoring suburban business development, white flight and urban renewal in US ciities) National policies (ex: farm subsidies and food stamps)Corruption around contracts and bidding, development andredevelopment programs
    11. 11. Alliances and DynamicsGrowth machine: Confluence of stakeholders who manage to frame a problem a certain way Alliances between banks, real estate, designers, planners Alliance between state, international financial institutions, and international corporationsSocio-spatial dynamicsGroups with contradictory and shifting interestsand allegiances
    12. 12. Environmental MovementsEnvironmentalists with one-sided view (at least insome countries)Over-value given to scientific studies rather thanlay knowledgeWeaker local movements in comparison withnational organizations willing to compromise andwork on smaller objectives, often at the detrimentof local realitiesNot able to rebuild the entirety of systems(ex.food systems)
    13. 13. Racist PracticesLack of valuation of poor and minority communityhealth (people of color, indigenous people, etc)Non recognition of people’ and group’ needs andpreferencesRacism by white workers and unionsPrivate practices: Redlining, high risk rating ofneighborhoods, high mortgage rates, no housingsubsidy or preference for black peoplePublic policies favoring business in suburbs or richercommunities and sponsoring white flight & urbanrenewal
    14. 14. Lack of Political PowerLack of access to decision-makers and toresources to defend oneself.Forms of resistance that reshape environmentalinequalitiesDeeper history and processes of env. inequalitiesand soc. InequalitiesLack of adequate participation spaces in decision-making
    15. 15. Processes and Actors: The example of food desertsFood desert: Area “with limited access to affordable andnutritious food, particularly such an area composed ofpredominately lower income neighborhoods andcommunities” (USDA 2009).In the US and UK, food deserts disproportionately impactpeople of color (Smoyer-Tomic, Spence, and Amrhein 2006; Beaulac,Kristjansson, and Cummins 2009)Available food reduced to corner stores, conveniencestores, and fast food restaurants: low availability of fruitand vegetables, over-presence of saturated fat and sugarsFood deserts directly related to food security, obesity, andcardiovascular diseasesStructural role of capital and political decisions in leadingto the development of food deserts
    16. 16. Picture 4
    17. 17. Picture 2
    18. 18. THE DEVELOPMENT OF FOOD DESERTS Reshaping of Ecosystemic ProcessesBroader Policies:-Subsidies for suburban investment- Dispersal of industry and workers- Conservative tax policy DEMARCATED DEVALUATIONUrban Planning:- Zoning - Dilapidated- Low-income housing in lowlands post- industrial- Urban renewal and new landscapetransportation corridors -Desinvestment FOOD - High DESERTSCorporations: unemployment- Redlining - Splitting up of- Move towards a service economy neighborhood rather than old industrial and agric. economy - Closure of retail- Large supermarkets in suburbs and of (independent)Individual Groups:- Racist homeowner associations and voters supermarkets- Exclusionary labor movement- Lack of poor resident resources and accessto decision-making
    19. 19. Core Concepts
    20. 20. • Environmental Racism: Extension of racism. Institutional rules, regulations, policies, or corporate decisions that deliberately target certain minority communities for least desirable land uses, resulting in the disproportionate exposure of toxic and hazardous. Unequal protection against toxic and hazardous waste exposure and the systematic exclusion of people of color from decisions affecting their communities• Environmental Justice : Cultural norms and values, rules, regulations, behaviors, policies, and decisions to support sustainable communities where people can interact with confidence that the environment is safe, nurturing, and productive. Is supported by decent paying safe jobs; quality schools and recreation; decent housing and adequate health care; democratic decision-making and personal empowerment; and communities free of violence, drugs, and poverty. Community cultural and biological diversity are respected and distributed justice prevails
    21. 21. • Environmental Inequality: Broader dimensions of the intersection between environmental quality and social hierarchies. Addresses questions such as the unequal distribution of power and resources in society.• Environmental Inequality Formation: Different stakeholders struggle for access to scarce resources within the political economy, with the benefits and costs of those resources unevenly distributed and accessed• Life Cycle Analysis: Study of the origin, use, and disposal of products, which helps us understand the full costs and benefits of production and consumption on people, communities, or ecosystems
    22. 22. • Treadmill of production: Continued need of the capitalist economy for investment in order to generate goods for sale on the market, which puts increasing pressure on natural resources and increases social inequalities• Stakeholder Analysis in Environmental Injustice: Analysis of all the actors, institutions and organizations (state, corporate, non profit, civil society, etc) which all have a stake in the pursuit or resolution of a particular conflict. Their position and alliances might shift over time based on their interest.
    23. 23. • Spatial injustice: Unequal allocation of socially valued resources (i.e. jobs, political power, social status, income, social services, environmental goods) in space, as well as unequal opportunities to make use of these resources over time• Environmental Double Movement: Economic activities, contributing to significant environmental problems in the context of a self-regulating market, which in return spurs social movements dedicated to reducing the severity of these problems through political, social, and cultural change.

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