This morning’s Democracy Now! features coverage of the growing fossil fuel divestment movement, recently the subject of a supportive op-ed from Archbishop Desmond Tutu in the U.K. Guardian.
“We cannot necessarily bankrupt the fossil fuel industry,” the former anti-apartheid leader writes, “But we can take steps to reduce its political clout, and hold those who rake in the profits accountable for cleaning up the mess.”
The questions facing environmental activists, and socialists in particular, range from the sheer scale of the environmental disasters already underway to the problems of beginning a transition from a system organized around massive consumption of fossil fuels, vast megacities and global agribusiness. In the process of doing so, how will an ecosocialist movement and society address the crisis of global inequality and the need to “develop the productive forces” without pushing the planet and human civilization over the environmental cliff?
The question of what demands ecosocialists should put forward in response to the climate crisis is a pressing one. Robin Hahnel, in “An Open Letter to the Climate Justice Movement”, argues that the climate justice movement should demand a cap-and-trade policy, abandoning its traditional stance against carbon trading. To Hahnel, carbon trading is the most realistic way for society to make carbon emissions cuts in the necessary time frame, and, contrary to the arguments of activists, it can be done in a sociall