INTRODUCTION – Why is this a Global Justice Issue?
Energy is the dominant contribution to climate change accounting for about 60% of total greenhouse gas emissions.
Most of the debate and discussion about energy has centred on switching from non-renewable to renewable energy and the divestment of fossil fuels and it’s great that this is in the public arena now. There is a clear link between reducing the use of fossil fuels and the effects of climate change that our planet and its people will experience in the future. As of 2016 climate change was projected to push 100 million people below the International Poverty Line of $1.90 by 2030. Fossil fuels have been used throughout history and since the industrial revolution the demand for fossil fuels has continued to increase. Environmental activists have been calling for an alternative to fossil fuels since the 1960s.
The exploration of ‘Energy’ as a theme is more nuanced than you would think however. The hidden costs of extraction of both fossil fuels and minerals needed for batteries for renewable energy on communities have not seen as much light of day. The Global North currently extracts 23 exajoules of energy from the Global South and with the move towards renewables, the Global North are already using the same model of exploitation and extraction to take the land of indigenous people for solar panels and carbon offsets.