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Dumpster Diving for a Better World

Explaining Unconventional Protest and Public Support for Actions against Food Waste

Benedikt Jahnke and Ulf Liebe

Food waste is a major challenge in affluent societies around the globe. Based on theories of protest and a mixed methods design combining qualitative, experimental, and survey research, we study the motives for, frequency of, and public support for dumpster diving in Germany. We find that dumpster diving as an unconventional daily protest action is related to more general protest against capitalist societies. It is motivated by both altruistic and egoistic concerns. The perceived legitimacy of violence and self-identity explain the frequency of dumpster diving. A factorial survey experiment with activists and the general public reveals strong similarities between the views of activists and those of other citizens in strong support of dumpster diving. This study demonstrates the usefulness of combining different empirical methods to study food activism.

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Not Lost but Found

Rebuilding Relations and Reclaiming Indigenous Food Systems

Keitlyn Alcantara

Gideon Mailer and Nicola Hale. 2019. Decolonizing the Diet: Nutrition, Immunity, and the Warning from Early America. New York: Anthem Press.

Gina Rae La Cerva. 2020. Feasting Wild: In Search of the Last Untamed Food. Berkeley, CA: Greystone Books.

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Peter M. Haswell

Overconsumption presents a major obstacle to social and environmental sustainability. Systemic social, legal, and economic strategies are absolutely necessary, but individuals are still accountable for their lifestyle choices and associated environmental footprints. Anti-consumption (rejection, reduction, reclamation) has its limitations, but could contribute to pro-environmental change, helping resolve biodiversity and climate crises. Regardless of societal consumption patterns, individuals can still make great gains in well-being and personal development by upholding their environmental and social values, minimizing personal resource consumption. Challenging the cultural norms of overconsumption requires individuals to employ mental fortitude in attempts to act justly toward the entire community of life. As a species, given our rational capabilities and ability to meet our basic needs, we are highly capable of bettering ourselves and our environment.

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Toying with Animism

How Learning to Play Might Help Us Get Serious About the Environment

Timothy Stacey

Scholars increasingly stress that getting serious about the environment will require a shift from Abrahamic and naturalist imaginaries that distinguish between culture and nature to, variously, “ecospirituality,” “dark green religion,” or animism. The first part of this article critiques this work on the grounds that it reifies rigid distinctions between “belief systems” or “ontologies,” and thus misrepresents both what needs to be aimed at and how to get there. In search of an alternative, the next two parts of this article draw on autoethnographic findings with non-Indigenous people involved in resisting resource extraction. I suggest that playfulness is an important component both of the imaginaries to be found among resisters and of the means of arriving at those imaginaries.

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Na Li

This article starts out from looking at what is missing from environmental history in China today, and then goes on to ask a particular set of questions: How does one interpret environmental history with the public? How does one present environmental history in public space? How does one engage with an environmentally conscious public? And ultimately, is it possible to establish public environmental history as a new mode of knowledge? In answer to these questions, it focuses on relationships, including the relationships between nature and culture, the environment and people, and history and memory. Using the dredging history of West Lake in Hangzhou as an illustrative case, it explores nature as material culture, calls attention to the rhetorical power of nature, and argues that environmental history should be interpreted and presented as public memory.

Open access

Natalie Bump Vena, Paige Dawson, Thomas De Pree, Sarah Hitchner, George Holmes, Sudarshan R Kottai, Daniel J Murphy, Susan Paulson, Victoria C. Ramenzoni, and Kathleen Smythe

Langston, Nancy. 2017. Sustaining Lake Superior: An Extraordinary Lake in a Changing World. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press. 292 pp. ISBN 978-0-300-21298-3.

Moore, Margaret. 2019. Who Should Own Natural Resources? Cambridge, MA: Polity Press. 140 pp. ISBN 978-1-509-52916-2

Middleton Manning, Beth Rose. 2018. Upstream: Trust Lands and Power on the Feather River. Tucson: University of Arizona Press. 244 pp. ISBN 978-0-8165-3514-9.

Van de Graaf, Thijs, and Benjamin K. Sovacool. 2020. Global Energy Politics. Cambridge: Polity Press. ISBN 978-1-5095-3048-9.

Wapner, Paul. 2020. Is Wildness Over? Cambridge, MA: Polity Press. ISBN 978-1-5095-3212-4.

DeSombre, Elizabeth R. 2020. What Is Environmental Politics? Cambridge: Polity Press. 202 pp. ISBN 978-1-5095-3413-5.

Ptáčková, Jarmila. 2020. Exile from Grasslands: Tibetan Herders and Chinese Development Projects. Seattle: University of Washington Press. ISBN: 978-0-295-74819-1

Liegey, Vincent, and Anitra Nelson. 2020. Exploring Degrowth: A Critical Guide. London: Pluto Press. 224 pp. ISBN 978-0-7453-4201-6

Behringer, Wolfgang. 2019. Tambora and the Year without a Summer: How a Volcano Plunged the World into Crisis. Medford, MA: Polity Press. 334 pp. ISBN 978-1-509-52549-2.

Duvall, Chris S. 2019. The African Roots of Marijuana. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. 351 pp. ISBN 978-1-4780-0394-6.

Open access

Liza Grandia

Abstract

Alongside the melting of glaciers, human bodies warn of another petrochemically driven planetary crisis. Much as climate science ignored the early warning observations of Indigenous peoples, the medical establishment has often dismissed the canaries struggling to survive in the mineshaft of modernity. In an aleatory Anthropocene, we know not for whom the toxicity will toll. While case studies of environmental justice remain essential, the privileged must also be jolted into understanding their own ontological precariousness (i.e., vulnerability) from toxicants pervasive in everyday life. Moving beyond “citizen science” with inspiration from feminist ethics of care and relational Indigenous epistemologies, I make a case for the extrasensory value of “canary science.” If managerial “risk” was the keyword of the profiteering twentieth century, a sense of shared vulnerability in the coronavirus era could help usher in the transitions needed for survival in this polluted world.

Open access

Out of Place in Outer Space?

Exploring Orbital Debris through Geographical Imaginations

Hannah Hunter and Elizabeth Nelson

Abstract

Increasing human activity in orbital space has resulted in copious material externalities known as “orbital debris.” These objects threaten the orbital operations of hegemonic stakeholders including states, corporations, and scientists, for whom debris present a significant problem. We argue that the geographical imaginations of powerful stakeholders shape conceptions of orbital debris and limit engagement with these objects. By engaging with interdisciplinary literature that considers orbital debris and geographical imaginations of outer space, we encourage a more capacious approach to orbital debris that goes beyond hegemonic narratives focused on functionality. We explore the connections between debris and injustice, arguing that these objects must also be considered in relation to terrestrial power and ecology. We then contemplate the possibilities that counter-hegemonic framings present when considering speculative futures of orbital space. In these ways, we explore how and why debris are variously engaged with as pollutants, risks, opportunities, or otherwise.

Open access

Julia Ros-Cuéllar, Harlan Koff, Carmen Maganda, and Edith Kauffer

April 2021 is here, one year and a month after the World Health Organization (WHO) declared a state of emergency for the COVID-19 pandemic. The vaccines have arrived, bringing us closer to the end of this crisis, but COVID-19 is not gone; therefore, the call for action remains relevant. We want to take this opportunity to remember and embrace the emphasis that has been put on the need for joint efforts and coordinated strategies, so we can thrive together, bringing everyone on board irrespective of geographic, economic, and political differences.

Open access

Pilivet Aguiar Alayola, Christine McCoy Cador, and Lucila Zárraga Cano

Abstract

The city of Cancun, Quintana Roo, Mexico, is characterized by its tourism activity due to the tourist attractions it offers. The objective of this research is to determine the level of sustainability according to urban, environmental, fiscal, and tourism dimensions. The research methodology consists of results obtained from the model for measuring sustainability and quality of life for tourist cities, through secondary and primary data, and through an exploratory study on a sample of 416 inhabitants of the city of Cancun, Quintana Roo. The results show that Cancun has areas for improvement to contribute to sustainability.

Résumé

La ville de Cancun, au Quintana Roo, Mexique, se caractérise par son activité touristique, en raison des attractions qu'elle offre dans ce domaine. L'objectif de cette recherche est de déterminer le niveau de durabilité des dimensions urbaine, environnementale, fiscale et touristique. La méthodologie s'appuie sur les résultats obtenus à partir d'un modèle de mesure de la durabilité et de la qualité de vie des villes touristiques obtenu à travers des données secondaires et primaires pour une étude exploratoire d'un échantillon de 416 habitants de la ville de Cancun. Les résultats montrent que Cancun présente des domaines à améliorer pour contribuer à la durabilité.

Resumen

La ciudad de Cancún, Quintana Roo, México, se caracteriza por su actividad turística, debido a los atractivos turísticos que ofrece. El objetivo de esta investigación es determinar el nivel de sostenibilidad de las dimensiones urbana, ambiental, fiscal y turística. La metodología de investigación son los resultados obtenidos a partir del modelo de medición de la sostenibilidad y calidad de vida para ciudades turísticas, a través de datos secundarios y primarios, mediante un estudio exploratorio a una muestra de 416 habitantes de la ciudad de Cancún, Q. Roo. Los resultados arrojan que Cancún tiene áreas de mejora para coadyuvar a la sostenibilidad.