To prevent worst-case-scenario climate crises, the global community must bring down greenhouse gas emissions — dramatically and immediately. This talk explores a promising new approach to climate policy, focused on keeping fossil fuels in the ground. Communities and non-governmental organizations have been attempting to stop the flow of fossil fuels for decades, as seen in widespread social mobilization against fracking and bitumen pipelines. But since 2017 this approach has begun to emerge in mainstream policy debates, with a wave of countries beginning to ban exploration or extraction. This talk explores the rise of these groundbreaking bans and reflects on what they might mean for Canada, a major fossil fuel producer, and our “petro-provinces.”
About the speaker: Dr. Carter is an Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science, Fellow of the Balsillie School of International Affairs, and Associate Director of the Arts First program at the University of Waterloo. Her research has focused on environmental policy and politics surrounding oil extraction in Canada’s major oil producing provinces (Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Newfoundland & Labrador). She has analyzed how environmental policy is developed and contested, emphasizing tensions between environmental/community impacts and economic imperatives. Carter is now extending this work in an international comparative project on supply-side climate policy, focused on political conditions necessary to wind down fossil fuel extraction in developed-world states. She is particularly intrigued by the rise of “keep it in the ground” movements and legislation.