Carbon Metrics: Global abstractions and ecological epistemicide

Carbon Metrics: Global abstractions and ecological epistemicide

Nov 13, 2015 by Camila Moreno, Daniel Speich Chassé, Lili Fuhr, Wolfgang Sachs
License: CC-BY-NC-ND

The environmental crisis is real, urgent, and of global reach and significance. Climate change is framed as the largest threat. But this threat is seen almost exclusively as a problem of too much CO2 emissions. Is climate change more important and more urgent than the loss of biodiversity, the degradation of arable soils, or the depletion of fresh water? Can any of these phenomena even be considered in isolation from each other?

This paper argues that the way we describe and frame a problem very much predetermines the kinds of solutions and answers we seek, e.g. carbon-centric mode creates and even destroys knowledge at the same time. The authors of this essay invite the readers to take a step back and brush climate policy against the nap.

With an introductory preface by Wolfgang Sachs.

Table of contents:


  1. Calories and temperature
  2. Carbon accounting
  3. Economic growth accounting
  4. Increasing visibility and invisibility at the same time
  5. Decarbonization?
  6. Metric mindset, capitalism and epistemicide

Concluding remarks

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