How do radical climate movements negotiate their environmental and their social agendas? A study of debates within the Camp for Climate Action (UK)

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Abstract

This is a case study of the Camp for Climate Action, which has held several high-profile protest events in the UK since its inception in 2006. It analyses the Camp as a contested space were different emphases on environmental and social priorities have to be negotiated by its activists. The article considers areas of contestation where concerns over climate change meet questions of social justice. These are structured around tangible issues of campaigning, such as opposition to new coal-fired power stations or to the third runway at Heathrow airport, some of which have put the Camp at odds with labour movement and class struggle activists. While some demand a drastic shift away from current levels of consumption, others question the discriminatory effects of self-imposed austerity politics. On a more abstract level, the article considers debates on the need for government solutions to the environmental crisis and their possible impacts on social equality. The article is structured around movement-internal debates and makes use of interviews, extensive fieldwork notes and continuous participant observation over the course of four years.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)194-215
Number of pages22
JournalCritical Social Policy
Volume31
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 31 May 2011

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class struggle
labor movement
participant observation
coal
airport
social justice
protest
equality
opposition
climate change
climate
politics
event
demand
interview

Keywords

  • activism
  • aviation
  • climate change
  • coal
  • state

Cite this

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