Sociology 420 Lecture Notes:
Climate: often deﬁned as the average weather.
Weather: state of atmosphere at a given time
Ozone hole and climate change?
Mostly unrelated phenomenon
Ozone hole from CFCs (CFCs phased out in international treaty)
Climate change from CO2, increases the greenhouse eﬀect.
Rapid Climate change
0. Global climate change/rapid climate change/global warming, climate vs.
0. rising global temperatures
0. changes on climate systems, variable weather
0. melting arctic and antarctic ice, sea level rise and further climate change
0. biosphere alterations = disruption of ecosystems and human agriculture.
2 Main theories we will use:
0. ecological marxism, treatmill of production, world-system theory
0. sustainable capitalism, merge technological development, economic
development, and a new ethos of capitalism
Inequalities of Energy Use and Emissions
0. Conventional measurement: CO2 per capita per nation-state
0. limited measurement
0. proposed measurement: by use type, wealth inequality, and geography
Two Main issues of the energy transition: the historical periods where dominant types
of energy transition into other dominant types of energy
0. “Decoupling” energy use from economic development in the developed
0. Addressing “energy poverty” in the developing world
Energy Poverty: how will it be addressed?
micro grid using fossil fuels
Individual: what to do to help the environment and being more sustainable
• choice/ agency empowerment
• 3 R’s
• talk to each other
Collective: what can we do as a “group”
• international agreement
• cap n trade
• shift responsibility
• social action
• wide perspective
McNall Rapid Climate Change:
• Cassandra Problem: politics of fear
• Risk: perceived vs. anticipated
• Wicked Problem
Uneven development and inequality: how did the world we see today come to be?
• the Great Divergence • US trend is similar to europe
• GDP/ capita over time
• Relative equality of wealth until 1750
• Europe/US diverge
• what creates global inequality ?
0. nature, natural diﬀerence, or geography
0. individual fault/achievement
0. Societal Economic
Processes making inequality:
• colonial legacy- changed economic activities over much of the the world
• Capitalism - arises from the constantly remakes inequality
• Industrialization - some countries become much more productive
• Social inequalities - race, caste, gender, power
Inequality Mechanisms (Therborn 2006)
• Distantiation: running ahead/falling behind
• exclusion: closure, hindering, discrimination
Consider the role of central authority versus local
• people controlling the power: business men, and government
• Bijoa? polluted by pesticides and dye testing factoring, aﬀecting 40k people
• The factory can just bribe their way out of law suits
• the local villagers often don’t know how to read or write
• Before 1970 the village landscape was beautiful
• 1970’s pesticides factory starte