Braskem’s Salt Mines, Maceió’s Ground Subsidence, and the Pitfalls of Corporate Sustainability Discourse

Marginalised populations are asymmetrically affected at all stages of the plastics production cycle – especially the extraction of raw materials. Such environmental impacts reproduce and reinforce pre-existing racial and socioeconomic inequalities. This is clearly illustrated in Maceió, the capital of Brazil’s north-eastern state of Alagoas: Since 2019, around 60,000 people have been forced to leave their communities after earth tremors and ground subsidence started to endanger the structures of houses and other buildings surrounding Mundaú Lagoon. Entire neighbourhoods have subsequently been abandoned.

Sketching a Theory of Fossil Imperialism

In recent years, both activists and researchers have started to invoke the term "fossil imperialism" to highlight the ways in which imperialist politics are tied up with the logic of fossil capitalism. Under fossil capitalism, ceaseless accumulation of capital necessitates continued expansion of an energy base of coal, oil, and natural gas.

Justice in Sustainability

RIFS Focal Topic: The Year in Review

As we start off the new year and set our sights on new goals and projects, we also want to take stock of the many activities and achievements of the RIFS “Justice in Sustainability” focal topic team during 2022.

“Struggle for Agrarian and Environmental Justice: The Farmers Movement in Northwest India”

The struggle for agrarian and environmental justice by the farmers movement in Northwest India was the second lecture in this year’s IASS Focal Topic series “Justice in Sustainability.” Our guest, Navdeep Boora, is a graduate student at the Indian Institute of Science Education & Research (IISER) Mohali. In his presentation, Navdeep gave us insights into the farmers’ protest against the Indian government’s attempt to further liberalize the country’s agricultural sector in 2021.