This story first appeared of UCSB Current.
The climate crisis is a fair phenomenon. However, it has no effect. They are shaped by geography, society and history, and vary greatly from community to community. Understanding this dynamic and identifying solutions is a key focus in the growing field of environmental justice.
Researchers and academics from around the world convened at UC Santa Barbara to discuss innovative approaches to studying and addressing environmental injustice. A diverse group of 27 participants, including sociologists, environmental economists and ethnologists, visited the university’s Coal Oil Point Reserve Nature Center for two days of presentations and discussions.
Michaela Clemence, executive director of UCSB’s Environmental Markets Lab (emLab) said: “We wanted to discuss how we bring together different types of expertise, methods and perspectives to deliver equitable environmental solutions.”
Hosted by emLab, the two-day workshop was an interdisciplinary workshop composed of UCSB faculty members Christopher Costello, David Pellow, Kyle Meng, and Tamma Carleton, as well as sociologists Julius McGee from the University of Oregon and Ian from the University of Oklahoma. Conceived and planned by the steering committee. Carrillo. The Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) funded the event and the research leading up to it.
Erica Morehouse, EDF’s Director of Equitable and Equitable Policy Solutions, said: “And I think the workshop was very much in line with that mindset.”
The topics were wide and varied. Carrillo spoke about the impact of climate change on the exploitation of workers on sugar cane plantations in South America. This issue has deep historical roots. Meanwhile, Laura Pulido of the University of Oregon discussed how white nationalism influences seemingly unrelated issues such as climate change mitigation and adaptation. Sharp polarization, threatened but powerful minorities, and complex intersections of group identities contribute to some negative and even derisive attitudes to climate issues. , she explained.
Lara Ma of the University of Kentucky found a racial disparity in federal property acquisitions in flood-prone areas. While none of these programs offer a 100% guaranteed market price for a home, she found that black and Hispanic households received 8-10% less than her white neighbors. Costello, research director at emLab, also talks about how race affects the success of people displaced by environmental hazards. Adapting to climate change could exacerbate disparities between the rich and the poor, the privileged and the disadvantaged, Costello stressed.
Although the presentation was enlightening, its primary purpose was to provide additional material for discussion and reflection. As Clemens explained, this was his two-day opportunity to take a step back, assess the big questions and assumptions everyone had about environmental justice, and consider what could be done going forward. What agency do we use and what do we do about it,” she said.
emLab staff are summarizing the workshop results and sharing them with the Environmental Defense Fund to discuss how they can facilitate future interdisciplinary research. Two of her EDF members who attended the event, her chief economists her Suzi Kerr and her Matthias Fripp, share key insights with their colleagues.
EmLab describes itself as a ‘think-and-do tank’ and aims to not only understand the problems facing society, but to implement solutions. This is where our relationships with government agencies, NGOs and organizations like EDF come to fruition. “Our mission is to highlight the power, limitations and design of market-based approaches for environmental and social good,” said Clemens. “Our partners are hands-on partners, and our job is to provide cutting-edge, actionable research to help inform their decisions, programs, and policies. is.”
EDF and emLab organized this workshop to build a community of scholars who believe they can collaborate on issues at the intersection of science, society and culture. Additionally, Clemens hopes to start a conversation that will lead to future research collaboration and further action.
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