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How Extreme Energy Leads to Extreme Politics

How Extreme Energy Leads to Extreme Politics

Aldo Orellana López, Sian Cowman

As corporations and governments around the world scramble to access harder-to-reach fossil fuels in fracking wells and tar sands, the struggles of communities on the front lines of this expansion of extractivism are becoming more extreme — and more visible.

And so is the backlash against any who resist.

Indigenous peoples who find themselves “in the way” of extractivist projects are increasingly finding their territorial rights, among others, violated.

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Excellent article.

The following exemplifies the disproportionate power used by the State to sustain corporate interests (Disaster capitalists) at the price of communities. Coming soon to a state protest near you:

"Usually, when the state and corporations act against the interests of local populations seeking to protect their water, environment, and health, communities attempt to use dialogue and legal processes to defend themselves. But when authorities continually ignore repeated demands and messages from these communities, a moment arrives when the only recourse left open to them is direct action.

"In this moment, the state uses direct repression against the population, and criminalizes social protest as a strategy to defeat community resistance and dissuade further protest.

“This is a phenomenon taking place right now in Argentina, but it isn’t exclusive to Argentina. In Chile the Mapuche people are also being repressed under anti-terrorism laws, even more violently. In Peru the law not only exempts state functionaries from responsibility if they kill activists, but also allows companies to contract with state law enforcement to protect corporate property and repress demonstrations. Colombia also has laws that facilitate the displacement of communities and other rights violations in extractive zones.”

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It is happening faster now. The remote indigenous placing themselves in the path of the extractivists. This will become more common everywhere as time goes on and people grow more desperate to effect change in the paths of the powers that be as global warming worsens. Right now the extractivists may succeed at terrible cost to indigenous (it is harder to use lethal force against well educated Europeans blocking a coal mine’s operations. In time around the world the extractivists and the polluters, the gmo crops producers, the pesticide developers et al will see the rising tide of humanity and eventually give way to the needs of their own species.

The old days of rapacious exploitation of the environment cannot be sustained on a scale that incorporates 7.3 billion people. Everything we do is now on such a huge scale, we have to start doing things better than we used to do them… we have no choice. Nor does the planet.

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