Jesse P. Van Gerven critically analyzes the movement for a carbon-free and nuclear-free energy future in the U.S. using an environmental justice framework. Van Gerven explores how different social and environmental justice discourses are constructed through the claims of social movement organizations. This study shows how ideas of distribution, recognition, and representation structure the arguments made by anti-nuclear groups against the production of nuclear power. Through this analysis the author identifies general principals of energy justice. These principles can guide future energy policy and energy system development to ensure social and environmental justice.
Jesse P. Van Gerven is lecturer in the Science, Technology, and Environmental Studies program at Butler University.
Table of Contents
List of Figures and Tables
Chapter 1: Federal “Loan Guarantees” for Financing New Nuclear Reactor Construction
Chapter 2: High-Level Radioactive Waste Management
Chapter 3: State/Local Financing of New Nuclear Reactor Construction and the Fights for Increased Nuclear Safety
About the Author
The Anti-Nuclear Power Movement and Discourses of Energy Justice finds principles of energy justice that can and should guide future decision-making on choices about sources of energy. At the most general level, therefore, the manuscript is a philosophical search for justice. The author uses several scholarly approaches (sociological, political theoretical, historical, public-policy analytical, and science-society studies), combined with his own observations as a participant in activities he assesses. This book is both novel and significant, on several grounds…Enlarging the concept of environmental justice to include energy justice has not to my knowledge been attempted elsewhere, and it’s useful. Questions of justice surround choices of all energy sources, so principles for assessing disputes about justice are useful to societies. I was particularly intrigued by the close attention to the investment-finance angles developed. The author has done a fine piece of scholarship.
Jesse Van Gerven offers a definitive, social science account of the ideas, actions, and effectiveness of the environmental groups that opposed nuclear power. Van Gerven’s innovative multidisciplinary analysis shows how the movement challenged corporate gain at taxpayers’ and consumers' expense, through political and cultural claims making, appealing to under-represented citizens and under-recognized communities of color. Van Gerven convincingly demonstrates that the current policy of finding communities to “volunteer” to hold nuclear waste is unjust, given the past history of corporations and government manipulating such consent from Native American representatives. Policy experts, citizens, and college students alike will learn from this stellar contribution to the research on environmental and racial justice.