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Ecopopulism and environmental justice in eastern and south Europe




Antal, Attila, author

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I am dealing in this paper with the question of environmental and climate (in)justices in Eastern and South Europe (ESE). At first, I will refer the theoretical pillars of environmental justice and my statement is that there is an expanding sphere concerning environmentalism which has grounded the theory of climate justice. The environmental justice has been expanded to climate justice, because it increasingly addressed that the environmental and social conditions provide for individual and community needs and functioning and justice depends on the environmental conditions. It has been put forward here that populism could bring closer the importance of environmental and climate related disasters to the people's everyday lives and experience. In the next part of this paper the connection of climate justice and social problems in ESE has been analyzed. The investigation elaborated here is based on a very important initiative called Environmental Justice Organizations, Liabilities and Trade (EJOLT) and its Environmental Justice Atlas. I will focus on two main environmental and climate injustice caused challenges: the first one is the situation of the Roma communities in ESE, and the second one is the emerging case of fuel or energy poverty. It has been raised here that an elitist populist regime, for instance in Hungary, how can damage the case of environmental and climate justice with instituted biopower. I will conclude this paper that we need to (re)enhance the social nature of environmental problems and this will strengthen the environmental consciousness in ESE. The relating discourse of environmental and climate justice in ESE is need to be based on environmental identities constructed on ethnical and social solidarity. Finally, we should have a look on the biopolitical structure of modern State.


Presented at the Environmental justice in the Anthropocene symposium held on April 24-25, 2017 at the Lory Student Center, Colorado State University, Fort Collins Colorado. This symposium aims to bring together academics (faculty and graduate students), independent researchers, community and movement activists, and regulatory and policy practitioners from across disciplines, research areas, perspectives, and different countries. Our overarching goal is to build on several decades of EJ research and practice to address the seemingly intractable environmental and ecological problems of this unfolding era. How can we explore EJ amongst humans and between nature and humans, within and across generations, in an age when humans dominate the landscape? How can we better understand collective human dominance without obscuring continuing power differentials and inequities within and between human societies? What institutional and governance innovations can we adopt to address existing challenges and to promote just transitions and futures?

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social injustice
Eastern Europe
environmental racism
Southern Europe
policy making
environmental justice
climate justice


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