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Green politics or environmental blues? Analyzing ecological democracy

[journal article]

Mitchell, Ross E.

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Abstract Unlike several previous efforts that have discussed ecological forms of democracy in vague or esoteric terms, this article elucidates key factors that may affect the realization of ecological democracy. In the first section, ecological democracy is defined as an alternative democratic model that 1) strives to incorporate interested citizens into environmental decision-making, and 2) lacks structural features that systematically concentrate environmental amenities into the hands of particular social groups, while imposing environmental and ecological degradation on others. This leads to a discussion of several hindering and facilitating factors that either thwart or encourage ecological democracy. Two examples in support of this discussion on ecological democracy are provided: border contamination due to heavy industrial use along the US-Mexican border, and community forestry in the southeastern state of Oaxaca. By analyzing relevant factors that either have prevented or encouraged democratic environmental decision-making, this research will serve to improve environmental policy formulation and governance.
Document language English
Publication Year 2006
Page/Pages p. 459-480
Journal Public Understanding of Science, 15 (2006) 4
Status Postprint; peer reviewed
Licence PEER Licence Agreement (applicable only to documents from PEER project)