The 'Green Economy': Class Hegemony and Counter-Hegemony

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Journal Article
Globalizations, 2013, 10 (3), pp. 411 - 424
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The transnational capitalist class is using the global ecological crisis to revive its failing financial system. Whereas environmental degradation was once seen as imposing a limit on economic accumulation, in the new 'green economy', ecologism appears to become a rationale for extending market activity. The intensification of neoliberal extraction, and corresponding social and environmental debt, meets resistance from the global justice movement whose articulation of a counter position is increasingly sophisticated. This article examines this dialectic as played out at the UN Rio + 20 Summit and parallel People's Summit in June 2012. The hegemonic 'green economy' formulation of corporations, multilateral agencies, unions, and big NGOs is contained in a document known as The Future We Want. A counter-hegemonic document entitled Another Future is Possible, facilitated by the World Social Forum, spells out an alternative route to global justice and environmental sustainability-a 'bio-civilisation'. In neo-Gramscian terms, a war of position is occurring between two 'transnational historic blocs around divergent social visions (Carroll, 2007, p. 36). © 2013 Copyright Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.
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