Degrowth Vienna 2020 – Resources and Energy

Standard session (discussion following 3 presentations)

  1. The Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition – Strategies for Social-Ecological Transformation
    My presentation focuses on strategies toward social-ecological transformation, undertaken by The Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition (OVEC) in West Virginia, to protect the mountain ecosystems and culture of Central Appalachia. OVEC has successfully fought polluters for over 30 years. The organization’s work is supported by volunteers/members, board of directors, staff members, and ordinary citizens united by the common goal: to create a sustainable economy that links a holistic lifestyle to environmental protection. Currently, OVEC’s major work is resisting the Appalachian Storage Hub (ASH/petrochemical complex and insisting on the build-up of renewable energy sources. The thematic focus on my presentation is promotion of a cleaner and safer energy, essential for the transition to a sustainable economy in Central Appalachia. Much of OVEC’s work is about addressing climate emergency by protecting air, land, water, and communities from deep shale oil and gas drilling (fracking) activities.
    Presenters: Ida Day (Marshall University, Huntington, WV)
  2. Fair carbon budgets and fair counting as levers for Degrowth – video
    Paris obligations make the inevitability of consumption reductions for affluent societies undeniable if we combine 3 non-radical demands: 1) equal per-capita allocation of the global carbon budget, 2) accounting for carbon footprints of imports/exports, 3) non-reliance on yet unproven technologies.
    Presenters: Jefim Vogel (Sustainability Research Institute, University of Leeds)
  3. Design Patterns for Degrowth Information Networks
    How might we design a ‘degrowth’ information infrastructure that enables the rapid, convivial global coordination we urgently need, while respecting and enhancing the dignity, sovereignty, and autonomy we desire? A survey of promising new designs, technologies open questions and challenges.
    Presenters: Don Blair (Edge Collective)

Language: English with translation to German

Technical details: Standard E_discussion.mp4, MPEG-4 video, 100MB

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Degrowth Vienna 2020 – Relations of Care: ethics and food production in Europe

Presentation [part of the standard session “Territories, Resources and Care Work Feminist Perspectives on Transformation“]

The Corona crisis has unprecedentedly highlighted the topic of this session: care work got visibility, its systemic relevance gained public recognition as never before. The appalling shortage of health care workers and the deficiencies in public health systems due to restructuring towards profit orientation and cost saving measures in the context of privatisation and globalisation became obvious. These systemic flaws aggravated the ongoing crisis of social reproduction towards a crisis of survival of societies. The pandemic also challenges the prevailing relation of human domination over nature and over bodies in the context of a growth-obsessed economy. The virus exposes the vulnerability of bodies and societies. It points at the destruction of ecosystems and of species due to the rapid expansion of industrial monocultures in agriculture, the encroachment of land, forest and water bodies. Thus, it shows the need to recognise the obstinacy of nature and to organise everyday life as a bio- and eco-social, and as a collective process saying farewell to the fiction of total control of nature. Therefore the crisis nurtures demands for a caring economy based on commons and oriented towards a good life for everybody. In everyday life people experienced that solidarity is an absolute necessity to cope with crisis situations. On the backdrop of a concept of feminist political economy and ecology which places the logic of care towards humans and nature at the centre of transformative strategies women resist a violent extractivist development model and a patriarchal-capitalist model of competition and individual utility maximisation. The session deals with different situations of violence: control over bodies and territories, and dispossession of land, livelihoods, resources and diversity. The focus is on everyday practices and politics of (re)production of environments, and of reclaiming and transforming spaces, territories and narratives vis-à-vis resource extractivism, large dam construction and industrialisation of food. In these critical situations and in critical places, the logic of caring and care work towards humans and nature link material und discursive production and reproduction while co-producing genders, natures and bodies. As Wendy Harcourt has highlighted, place-based everyday politics are about resistance but also about reinvention of practices, opportunities and commons as we move towards emancipatory and transformative politics. For these politics and strategies, growth in terms of ever increasing GDP is not the goal. The session will look at care work in our social-nature entanglements that promote social and gender justice, equality and alternative forms of knowing and acting.

Presenters: Wendy Harcourt (ISS, Den Hague), Anna Katharina Voss (ISS), Rosa de Nooijer (ISS)

Language: English

Technical details: WENDY_HARCOURT_SP K_NEW.mp4, MPEG-4 video, 279MB

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Degrowth Vienna 2020 – WoMin – African women unite against destructive resource extraction

Presentation [part of the standard session “Territories, Resources and Care Work Feminist Perspectives on Transformation“]

The Corona crisis has unprecedentedly highlighted the topic of this session: care work got visibility, its systemic relevance gained public recognition as never before. The appalling shortage of health care workers and the deficiencies in public health systems due to restructuring towards profit orientation and cost saving measures in the context of privatisation and globalisation became obvious. These systemic flaws aggravated the ongoing crisis of social reproduction towards a crisis of survival of societies. The pandemic also challenges the prevailing relation of human domination over nature and over bodies in the context of a growth-obsessed economy. The virus exposes the vulnerability of bodies and societies. It points at the destruction of ecosystems and of species due to the rapid expansion of industrial monocultures in agriculture, the encroachment of land, forest and water bodies. Thus, it shows the need to recognise the obstinacy of nature and to organise everyday life as a bio- and eco-social, and as a collective process saying farewell to the fiction of total control of nature. Therefore the crisis nurtures demands for a caring economy based on commons and oriented towards a good life for everybody. In everyday life people experienced that solidarity is an absolute necessity to cope with crisis situations. On the backdrop of a concept of feminist political economy and ecology which places the logic of care towards humans and nature at the centre of transformative strategies women resist a violent extractivist development model and a patriarchal-capitalist model of competition and individual utility maximisation. The session deals with different situations of violence: control over bodies and territories, and dispossession of land, livelihoods, resources and diversity. The focus is on everyday practices and politics of (re)production of environments, and of reclaiming and transforming spaces, territories and narratives vis-à-vis resource extractivism, large dam construction and industrialisation of food. In these critical situations and in critical places, the logic of caring and care work towards humans and nature link material and discursive production and reproduction while co-producing genders, natures and bodies. As Wendy Harcourt has highlighted, place-based everyday politics are about resistance but also about reinvention of practices, opportunities and commons as we move towards emancipatory and transformative politics. For these politics and strategies, growth in terms of ever increasing GDP is not the goal. The session will look at care work in our social-nature entanglements that promote social and gender justice, equality and alternative forms of knowing and acting.

Presenter: Samantha Hargreaves

Language: English

Technical details: SP K_Samantha Hargreaves.mp4, MPEG-4 video, 126MB

This is a link to a torrent video file. By clicking on ‘external content’ you will be opening a magnet link that will allow you to download the corresponding video with a torrent client. To learn more about downloading torrents see here.

Degrowth Vienna 2020 – Beyond the Dam – Feminist perspectives on the social-environmental conflicts around the hydropower plant São Luis do Tapajós: shifting narratives

Presentation [part of the standard session “Territories, Resources and Care Work Feminist Perspectives on Transformation“]

The Corona crisis has unprecedentedly highlighted the topic of this session: care work got visibility, its systemic relevance gained public recognition as never before. The appalling shortage of health care workers and the deficiencies in public health systems due to restructuring towards profit orientation and cost saving measures in the context of privatisation and globalisation became obvious. These systemic flaws aggravated the ongoing crisis of social reproduction towards a crisis of survival of societies. The pandemic also challenges the prevailing relation of human domination over nature and over bodies in the context of a growth-obsessed economy. The virus exposes the vulnerability of bodies and societies. It points at the destruction of ecosystems and of species due to the rapid expansion of industrial monocultures in agriculture, the encroachment of land, forest and water bodies. Thus, it shows the need to recognise the obstinacy of nature and to organise everyday life as a bio- and eco-social, and as a collective process saying farewell to the fiction of total control of nature. Therefore the crisis nurtures demands for a caring economy based on commons and oriented towards a good life for everybody. In everyday life people experienced that solidarity is an absolute necessity to cope with crisis situations. On the backdrop of a concept of feminist political economy and ecology which places the logic of care towards humans and nature at the centre of transformative strategies women resist a violent extractivist development model and a patriarchal-capitalist model of competition and individual utility maximisation. The session deals with different situations of violence: control over bodies and territories, and dispossession of land, livelihoods, resources and diversity. The focus is on everyday practices and politics of (re)production of environments, and of reclaiming and transforming spaces, territories and narratives vis-à-vis resource extractivism, large dam construction and industrialisation of food. In these critical situations and in critical places, the logic of caring and care work towards humans and nature link material und discursive production and reproduction while co-producing genders, natures and bodies. As Wendy Harcourt has highlighted, place-based everyday politics are about resistance but also about reinvention of practices, opportunities and commons as we move towards emancipatory and transformative politics. For these politics and strategies, growth in terms of ever increasing GDP is not the goal. The session will look at care work in our social-nature entanglements that promote social and gender justice, equality and alternative forms of knowing and acting.

Presenters: Camila Nobrega

Language: English

Technical details: SP K_Camila Nobrega.mp4, MPEG-4 video, 68.2MB

This is a link to a torrent video file. By clicking on ‘external content’ you will be opening a magnet link that will allow you to download the corresponding video with a torrent client. To learn more about downloading torrents see here.

Degrowth Vienna 2020 – Territories, Resources and Care Work Feminist Perspectives on Transformation

Special session (discussion following 3 presentations)

The Corona crisis has unprecedentedly highlighted the topic of this session: care work got visibility, its systemic relevance gained public recognition as never before. The appalling shortage of health care workers and the deficiencies in public health systems due to restructuring towards profit orientation and cost saving measures in the context of privatisation and globalisation became obvious. These systemic flaws aggravated the ongoing crisis of social reproduction towards a crisis of survival of societies. The pandemic also challenges the prevailing relation of human domination over nature and over bodies in the context of a growth-obsessed economy. The virus exposes the vulnerability of bodies and societies. It points at the destruction of ecosystems and of species due to the rapid expansion of industrial monocultures in agriculture, the encroachment of land, forest and water bodies. Thus, it shows the need to recognise the obstinacy of nature and to organise everyday life as a bio- and eco-social, and as a collective process saying farewell to the fiction of total control of nature. Therefore the crisis nurtures demands for a caring economy based on commons and oriented towards a good life for everybody. In everyday life people experienced that solidarity is an absolute necessity to cope with crisis situations. On the backdrop of a concept of feminist political economy and ecology which places the logic of care towards humans and nature at the centre of transformative strategies women resist a violent extractivist development model and a patriarchal-capitalist model of competition and individual utility maximisation. The session deals with different situations of violence: control over bodies and territories, and dispossession of land, livelihoods, resources and diversity. The focus is on everyday practices and politics of (re)production of environments, and of reclaiming and transforming spaces, territories and narratives vis-à-vis resource extractivism, large dam construction and industrialisation of food. In these critical situations and in critical places, the logic of caring and care work towards humans and nature link material und discursive production and reproduction while co-producing genders, natures and bodies. As Wendy Harcourt has highlighted, place-based everyday politics are about resistance but also about reinvention of practices, opportunities and commons as we move towards emancipatory and transformative politics. For these politics and strategies, growth in terms of ever increasing GDP is not the goal. The session will look at care work in our social-nature entanglements that promote social and gender justice, equality and alternative forms of knowing and acting.

Presenters: Christa Wichterich (freelance, UniBonn), Samantha Hargreaves (WoMin), Camila Nobrega (FU Berlin), Wendy Harcourt (ISS, Den Hague), Anna Katharina Voss (ISS), Rosa de Nooijer (ISS)

Presentations:

Camila Nobrega (FU Berlin) – video

Samantha Hargreaves (WoMin) – video

Wendy Harcourt (ISS, Den Hague), Anna Katharina Voss (ISS), Rosa de Nooijer (ISS) – video

Language: English

Technical details: SP K_discussion.mp4, MPEG-4 video, 39.6MB

This is a link to a torrent video file. By clicking on ‘external content’ you will be opening a magnet link that will allow you to download the corresponding video with a torrent client. To learn more about downloading torrents see here.

Why degrowth is the worst idea on the planet

Despite still growing over the last 50 years, we already figured out how to reduce our impact on Earth. So let’s do that.

The Green New Old Deal: a new industrial policy when we need a de-industrial policy

The most popular poster for the Green New Deals reveals startling assumptions…

Differences in carbon emissions reduction between countries pursuing renewable electricity versus nuclear power

Two of the most widely emphasized contenders for carbon emissions reduction in the electricity sector are nuclear power and renewable energy. While scenarios regularly question the potential impacts of adoption of various technology mixes in the future, it is less clear which technology has been associated with greater historical emission reductions. Here, we use multiple regression analyses on global datasets of national carbon emissions and renewable and nuclear electricity production across 123 countries over 25 years to examine systematically patterns in how countries variously using nuclear power and renewables contrastingly show higher or lower carbon emissions. We find that larger-scale national nuclear attachments do not tend to associate with significantly lower carbon emissions while renewables do. We also find a negative association between the scales of national nuclear and renewables attachments. This suggests nuclear and renewables attachments tend to crowd each other out.

Nature Energy, Oct. 2020

The limits of transport decarbonization under the current growth paradigm

Achieving ambitious reductions in greenhouse gases (GHG) is particularly challenging for transportation due to the technical limitations of replacing oil-based fuels. We apply the integrated assessment model MEDEAS-World to study four global transportation decarbonization strategies for 2050. The results show that a massive replacement of oil-fueled individual vehicles to electric ones alone cannot deliver GHG reductions consistent with climate stabilization and could result in the scarcity of some key minerals, such as lithium and magnesium. In addition, energy-economy feedbacks within an economic growth system create a rebound effect that counters the benefits of substitution. The only strategy that can achieve the objectives globally follows the Degrowth paradigm, combining a quick and radical shift to lighter electric vehicles and non-motorized modes with a drastic reduction in total transportation demand.

Energy Strategy Reviews, vol. 32, November 2020

First North-South Conference on Degrowth-Descrecimiento, México City 2018 – The destruction of vernacular resources and know-how by industrial technoscientific development: a French perspective

Conferencia de la Plenaria del Martes por Daniel Cerezuelle: “La destrucción de los recursos y conocimientos técnicos vernáculos por el desarrollo industrial y tecnocientífico, una perspectiva francesa.”

First North-South Conference on Degrowth-Descrecimiento, México City 2018 – Extractivismo, generación de riqueza?

Conferencia de la Plenaria del Jueves por Aleida Azamar: “Extractivismo, ¿generación de riqueza?”

First North-South Conference on Degrowth-Descrecimiento, México City 2018 – A critical-integral assessment of Mexico’s Energy Transition Strategy

Socio-environmental issues will continue to emerge if an energy transition project does not include changes in patterns of consumption and resource governance.

First North-South Conference on Degrowth-Descrecimiento, México City 2018 – Megaproyectos: minería en América Latina

Esta presentación trata de los impactos económicos, sociales y ambientales del extractivismo en América Latina.

Designing sustainability in blues: the limits of technospatial growth imaginaries

In the midst of a global food crisis, the late 2000s saw tensions between rising food prices and demands for biofuels coalesce into a “food versus fuel” debate. In response to ensuing public outcries, governmental agencies, and researchers across the globe began mobilizing around alternative biofuel feedstock. Among these materials, algae emerged as the most “hopeful” sustainable alternative in producing biofuels. This article examines algal biofuel production systems designed offshore and integrated with wastewater treatment and carbon dioxide absorption processes to revitalize faith in biofuels in the blue economy. It discusses what makes algal biofuels sustainable by examining the ways practitioners talk about and design these integrated systems. Against the common refrain that algae’s photosynthetic and reproductive capacity makes these systems sustainable, this article underlines that there is nothing natural, innate, about algae to add to sustainable blue economies. Rather, algae become naturalized as biofuel source and bioremediation technologies through technoscientific discourses and interventions, which embed and reproduce anthropocentric approach to sustainability that centers on the ideology of growth. By drawing particular attention to the ways that integrated algal biofuel production systems depend on the constant generation of industrial waste, this article problematizes anthropocentric sustainability imaginaries and claims for imagining sustainability otherwise through the lens of blue degrowth to create a radical socio-ecological change.

Sustainability Science, vol. 15, 2020