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Book description

Why is the world not moving fast enough to solve the climate crisis? Politics stand in the way, but experts hope that green investments, compensation, and retraining could unlock the impasse. However, these measures often lack credibility. Not only do communities fear these policies could be reversed, but they have seen promises broken before. Uncertain Futures proposes solutions to make more credible promises that build support for the energy transition. It examines the perspectives of workers, communities, and companies, arguing that the climate impasse is best understood by viewing the problem from the ground up. Featuring voices on the front lines such as a commissioner in Carbon County deciding whether to welcome wind, executives at energy companies searching for solutions, mayors and unions in Minnesota battling for local jobs, and fairgoers in coal country navigating their uncertain future, this book contends that making economic transitions work means making promises credible.

Reviews

‘Uncertain Futures builds around the seldom acknowledged reality that the clean energy transition involves place-based economic disruption of breathtaking scale and pace, generating legitimate worker and community concerns. The political headwinds generated by inattention to these concerns are stiff, especially given the low credibility of governments to manage major transitions for the benefit of all. Uncertain Futures, laying out the issues clearly and providing direction for breaking the climate action logjam, is a must-read for all those at the forefront of advancing social equity while addressing the climate challenge.’

Ernest J. Moniz - 13th US Secretary of Energy; Director, MIT-Harvard Roosevelt Project

‘Overcoming the political impasse on climate requires rethinking the way we do politics. Alexander Gazmararian and Dustin Tingley show us how: we need a climate politics from the ground up, one that listens to those whose lives will be upended by the transition to a green economy and offers a credible path to new jobs and strong communities. This pathbreaking book offers our best hope for overcoming the climate impasse.’

Michael J. Sandel - author of Democracy’s Discontent: A New Edition for Our Perilous Times

‘This compelling, well-documented, and stunningly insightful account of community-based opposition to green policies in the US begins and ends with respect for and consultation with the affected communities. Gazmararian and Tingley document widespread perceptions of governments’ inability to make credible commitments, aggravating citizen uncertainties about the future. The authors go beyond diagnosis with detailed prescriptions designed to increase government transparency and trustworthiness - and make a green future possible.’

Margaret Levi - Professor of Political Science, Stanford University

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Contents

  • 3 - Asking People, Communities, and Companies
    pp 70-95

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