Category Archives: Government

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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Yes, Genocide (a primer on the term) #MMIWG

For Raphael Lemkin, who invented the term, genocide was the effort to destroy a group as a group. #MMIWG

Nuclear State, Nuclear Waste

Nuclear State, Nuclear Waste: Emily Simmonds on Canada as a nuclear nation & ongoing colonialism through uranium mining.

Waste colonialism

Waste colonialism refers to how waste and pollution are part of the domination of one group in their homeland by another group. The concept has been gaining traction since the 1990s to explain patterns of power in wasting and pollution.

Against Risk Perception

The deficit model frames public controversies about contamination as a lack of scientific understanding or trust in government institutions. People are seen as deficient in knowledge about an issue, erasing local, community, and personal expertise.

These chemicals are bad for babies and whales: Why haven’t they been banned in Canada?

Canadian regulators are all over the map with respect to flame retardants. On PBDEs, Canada infamously refused to take meaningful regulatory action. The government found most PBDEs to be toxic substances in 2006, but it declined to ban or restrict them in consumer products in 2008 or in 2016.

Moving the Circular Economy Beyond Alchemy

This review of a special issue of the Journal of Industrial Ecology titled, “Exploring the Circular Economy” is a virtual tour of circular economy definitions and current directions. The authors discuss and derive new definitions of “circularity.” They cover fundamental determinants of material lifespan, such as economic demand, thermodynamics, product design, and durability.

CFP: Pervasive Powers: Corporate Authority in the Shaping of Public Policy (Paris)

This conference is based on the idea that, not only has this power varied among industries, countries and different periods, but also that the way in which it is wielded has evolved over time.

Pollution is Colonialism

Colonialism in Canada is an ongoing structure whereby settler society and government assert sovereignty over lands already occupied by Indigenous peoples.

Cleaning up toxic sites shouldn’t clear out the neighbors

Notions of “sustainability” and “urban greening” ought to include values of justice and equity. Otherwise, important projects like the Blue Greenway will build sustainable waterfronts for the urban elite, rather than spreading the environmental benefits of toxic cleanup to the many.