Profs & Pints: The Green New Deal and Climate Colonialism
Profs and Pints presents: The Green New Deal and Climate Colonialism, with Olufemi Taiwo, assistant professor of philosophy at Georgetown University and scholar of environmental-justice issues.
The Green New Deal has changed the conversation among progressive Democrats about how to deal with climate change, shifting the focus from simply managing a disaster to using an existential threat to build a more just society. Should this legislative concept be transformed into actual policies, however, some of the solutions it engenders could make global inequality worse. It could even exacerbate climate colonialism, or the domination of less powerful countries and peoples through initiatives meant to slow the pace of global warming.
To understand why this is the case, we need to understand colonialism differently. We often imagine the most direct forms of colonialism, where the imperial power has a strong military and administrative presence. However, historically, the British, German, and French empires often have preferred to engage in more indirect forms of colonial domination in much of Africa and South Asia. The Green New Deal would give birth to a massive policy initiative by the worlds most powerful nation that could spawn new forms of indirect colonial domination.
Join Olufemi Taiwo, a scholar of issues related to environmental justice, as he discusses the potential hazards. Hell describe how the clearest threats of climate colonialism stem from proposals dealing with land use and the potential to reserve large tracts of land for the development of renewable energy, carbon removal, reforestation, or greener agricultural methods. With much of the world's available land is in poor countries and inhabited by the world's most politically marginalized people, and our efforts to mitigate climate change could very well come at their expense. European demands for carbon offsets in Uganda and Tanzania have shown this possibility is not simply imagined.
The talk wont offer any easy solutions, but thats the point. What it might do is leave well-intentioned people aware of how efforts to do good can cause harm.
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