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Keywords:

  • global environmental justice;
  • social justice;
  • political ecology;
  • commodity frontiers;
  • environmental politics

This paper introduces a themed section on global environmental in/justice. In doing so it pays particular attention to two matters. First, it explores the value of a ‘global’ perspective on justice, highlighting how this framing reflects the nature and scales of contemporary environmental problems, the political-economic forces that pattern the uneven access to resources, and the vocabularies and narratives that are used to make claims about these inequities. Perhaps more significantly, the paper argues that a global framing appears to foreground particular aspects of environmental justice analysis, especially political and economic forces that produce injustices. Second, the introduction looks across the five papers in the section, each of which looks at a different environmental sector/issue: forests, transboundary waters, biodiversity conservation, energy and climate change, and disasters. It draws out the emergent themes across the papers, which involves discussions of the location of environmental struggles at new commodity frontiers, the limitations of distributive approaches to justice, and the relationship between social and environmental justice.