B.6 Defending a failed Status Quo
Strategies of the Fossil Fuel industry and international struggles fighting back
Disinformation campaigns and climate change denialism, geoengineering as a ‘technofix’ for the climate crisis, and the upstream expansion of plastics production: The Fossil Fuel industry is perhaps the single most important, globally operating stumbling block for a transformative trajectory towards degrowth and climate justice. For decades, they have employed their economic and political clout to prevent meaningful climate action that would undermine their business model. The course sets out to take an in-depth look at past and current strategies of the Fossil Fuel industry to maintain their power and uphold a failed status quo. At the same time, powerful international movements and alliances are forming to tackle the Fossil Fuel industry at the very heart of these strategies: Investigative research into what the oil industry knew about climate change decades earlier than anyone suspected today forms the basis of a wave of current climate litigation cases, geoengineering fought back against as climate change denialism 2.0, and an emerging movement around plastics exposes the high integration of interests in the fossil fuel, plastics and agrochemicals industries.
Based on an assessment of the industries’ strategies, we will discuss what it will take to dismantle the fossil fuel industry and what economic restructuring we need to shift towards a climate just future.
Time schedule and main methods:
The course will be run in an interactive format that will include short framing inputs by the course facilitators, break-out groups and participatory group discussions. The course facilitators will provide the group with the required reading and working materials. Day 1 will set the scene and provide a 101 on the fossil fuel industry. We will dive into the science, communications and denialism employed by the industry to block climate action, and discuss questions around liability and climate litigation. Day 2 is dedicated to geoengineering and counter-strategies, Day 3 focusses on plastics and fighting upstream fossil fuel expansion. Tying together insights and knowledge gathered in the course, the course concludes on Day 4 by addressing what is needed to dismantle the fossil fuel industry and to bring about the socio-economic restructuring across various sectors that is urgently required.
No prior knowledge required.
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