Category Archives: Environment

Reading Lists: Waste Colonialism and Palestine

When there’s conflict, academics and teachers will often put together a reading list or syllabus to show the breadth and depth of knowledge on a topic that is catching broad public attention. These reading lists are designed to add context, nuance, and history to public discussions (e.g. The Standing Rock Syllabus (2016); The Environmental Data […]
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Taboos around menstruation are leading to a growing environmental crisis in India

If the disposability of menstrual products is not prioritised as much as their accessibility, India could be dealing with mountains of discarded waste products in less than 50 years.

On Wishcycling

Wishcycling is the process of placing discards into the recycling bin even when there’s little to no chance for their recovery. The term entered common use over the last six or so years. But its usage and meaning have changed over time.

Firsting in Research

Firsting in research, then, is not about being first to a place, first to know something, first to discover something. It is a proclamation of power to make property in someone’s home, to put your own name on otherwise shared or common knowledge. It’s a proclamation of the privilege to not see others, cite others, or acknowledge others.

There’s no such thing as “We”

Put simply, evoking the universal “we” is a way to discard differences and maintain business as usual.

Sending surplus food to charity is not the way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions

While giving food that would otherwise go to landfill to hungry people may be a convenient part of a solution to reduce greenhouse gases, it will do little to ensure the well-being of the four million Canadians who are food insecure.

Placing discard studies in Australia

Australian discard studies scholars Catherine Phillips, David Boarder Giles, and Gay Hawkins discuss intellectual traditions, settler colonialism, and the future of the field.

Waste is not “matter out of place”

Douglas’ theory of matter out of place is about power. Something in the wrong spot, something poisonous, is not matter out of place. Unless it threatens power.

The Tragedy of the Tragedy of the commons

A Twitter essay by Matto Mildenberger (@mmildenberger)   Something I’ve been meaning to say about The Tragedy of the Commons. Bear with me for a small thread on why our embrace of Hardin is a stain on environmentalism: we’ve let a flawed metaphor by a racist ecologist define environmental thinking for a half century. Hardin’s […]
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Rethinking Remediation

Mining is, as some in the industry quip, primarily a waste management industry.