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The EJAtlas and the Making of the World Movement for Environmental Justice. A “Sociology of Absences”?

Author: Joan Martínez-Alier

Published at the University of Toronto Press, at the The Tocqueville Review.

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The EJAtlas is an archive of environmental conflicts. It is a collective endeavor. Both academics and activists contribute to it. It will reach 4,000 entries by 2023 allowing much new research on comparative political ecology and making visible the global countermovement for environmental justice. Growth in social metabolism (flows of energy and materials) and the abundance of environmental conflicts are seen as two sides of the same coin. Revealing the enormous circularity gap or “entropy hole” at the center of the industrial economy, the EJAtlas explores the geographies of resistance and the social protagonists of “ecological distribution conflicts” across the world. Environmental defenders display diverse valuation languages. Although the local complaints depend on local social and political cultures, there are common patterns of felt grievances and environmental activism at the frontiers of commodity extraction and waste disposal.

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