In this episode of Talking Shop, we interview Simon Pirani, the author of ‘Burning Up – A Global History of Fossil Fuel Consumption’. Simon is a writer, historian, and researcher on energy, as well as an activist involved in social and labour movements.
In ‘Burning Up’, Simon argues that, throughout the twentieth century, industrialisation, urbanisation and mass consumption were the driving forces for the technological changes and changes in energy consumption that created the current climate crisis. He also discusses the social transformations that would be needed to build fully sustainable relationships to the environment.
We asked Simon about what climate change looks like in the present day and near future, the promise of movements like the school strikes, and the climate denialism of big business. We talked about how and why unions should be mobilising their membership behind climate issues, and about moving beyond the false dichotomy of jobs vs positive environmental policies.
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