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Essay

Heeft het klimaat nood aan consensus?

Pleidooi voor een politiek van het denkbare

Journal Res Publica, Issue 4 2011
Keywords UN climate policy, constructivism, politics of the imaginable, politics of science, post-politics, matter of concern
Authors Gert Goeminne
AbstractAuthor's information

    In this essay, I argue that the alleged failure of the Copenhagen climate summit in December 2009, rather than labelling it as the collapse of climate politics, should be embraced as an essential political fact. Admittedly, Copenhagen was a failure, albeit of a populist consensual policy practice that invokes an apocalyptic doomsday scenario to make everybody toe the neo-liberal line. In my view, consensus-driven UN policy is running into its own limits as was clearly illustrated at the climate summit in Cancun (December 2010) where the blame was pinned on Bolivia for its fierce resistance against a weak agreement. The time has come to revive the climate and, by extension, the environment as a matter of genuine political concern, open to struggle and contestation, in this way constituting an essential component of social change.


Gert Goeminne
Gert Goeminne is als postdoctoraal onderzoeker van het FWO-Vlaanderen verbonden aan het Centrum Leo Apostel (VUB) en het Centrum voor Duurzame Ontwikkeling (UGent). In zijn onderzoek focust hij op de relatie tussen wetenschap en democratie.
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