A Review of Ashley Dawson, People’s Power: Reclaiming the Energy Commons (OR Books, 2020)
I don’t mind admitting, when my wife and I purchased a solar array two years ago, I basked a bit in my climate virtue. True enough, the tax incentives were a factor. And the idea of being self-sufficient through some looming, dystopian collapse was vaguely reassuring. But I must also admit I had not considered the resources and energy, the extraction and exploitation, that made my shiny, virtuous “clean energy” possible.
System Change Not Climate Change, Facebook Live, December 19, 2020
SCNCC is thrilled to be hosting our first Ecosocialist Solstice Artivists Showcase, in which we will feature and celebrate the visual, escritorial, and performing arts, and the artists and writers who create them.
Register for the event, which will be done live via Zoom starting at 4:00 p.m. ET, 2:00 p.m. CT, 3:00 p.m. MT, 4:00 p.m. ET (all US/Canada) on Sunday, December 20.
With California and Oregon on fire as Climate Week opened in New York on September 21 “climate arsonist” Donald Trump took to the virtual floor of the UN General Assembly and slammed China for its environmental record while ignoring his own efforts to save the coal industry and boost fossil fuel consumption – actions that earned him that sobriquet from Joe Biden.
We need to build a strike-capable mass movement that unites diverse groups behind powerful demands for system change. This is the only way to reverse course on climate destruction and intertwined crises. There is no time to waste.
This means we need to:
Devote time, energy and money to building that movement, and
Think through how our actions shape people’s understandings and their willingness to join such a movement.
On both these fronts, urging people to vote for Joe Biden and the Democrats undermines the work we need to be doing.
Voting for Biden won’t save them. Not voting for Biden will doom them.
You couldn’t have paid me to vote for Hillary Rodham Clinton in 2016; I’d voted for all prior Green Party candidates over the dreadful Democratic Party choices — except for the year I voted for Barack Obama, in the vain hope that he had a hidden true progressive self behind the Wall Street-cozy veneer. Live and learn.
One strategy for lowering CO2 emissions, favored by many environmental organizations and currently implemented in several states, is to formally impose a “social cost of carbon,” or SCC, at the point of production. Proponents claim that this would begin to ensure that previously “externalized costs” are accounted for in pricing mechanisms.
As China struggles to recover economically from the impact of the pandemic, it is set to deal a painful blow to global efforts to fight climate change. The party has often sacrificed environmental regulations as soon as GDP targets and economic growth have been threatened, thus industrial or trade decline paradoxically produces soaring pollution. But even in normal times, China’s soaring carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions are a massive part of the dire threat to all life on earth posed by climate change.