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Climate Reparations

Climate Reparations: How Did We Get Here?

Hurricane Dorian, Bahamas

A Seminar with Dr. Keston Perry, University of the West of England, Bristol, UK.

Discussant: Professor Alice Mah, University of Warwick, Coventry, UK.


Popular discourse about climate change and its devastating effects portrays climate change as a global threat that we have all contributed to. However, this is not true. This talk gives an historical overview of who is principally responsible for the accumulation of greenhouse gas emissions that is the Global North, especially elites and corporations. The major effects we have seen in fatalities, environmental precarity, migration and displacement, ecological loss, and economic marginalization caused by extreme weather events have social and historical antecedents. Given the scale of the effects on frontline communities in the Global South, a number of ethical questions are raised that we must address through a reparations programme and justice framework. This presentation will therefore outline climate reparations as an ethical policy framework to address these injustices, and the transnational political mobilization required to ensure communities receive their just due, support and compensation.

Climate Reparations Seminar Video

Discussant Session

Audience Q & A session


Dr. Keston Perry is a lecturer in economics and political economist at the Department of Accounting, Economics and Finance within the Faculty of Law and Business, University of the West of England, Bristol. His work draws upon professional and academic spheres that seeks to understand the sources of institutional and economic change in developing countries, and in particular why some countries and social groups come to exercise agency despite their marginalisation to transform their societies.

Professor Alice Mah is author of Port Cities and Global Legacies (2014, Palgrave Macmillan) and Industrial Ruination, Community, and Place (2012, University of Toronto Press), winner of the 2013 British Sociological Association Philip Abrams Memorial Prize. Her most recent book, edited with Thom Davies, is Toxic Truths: Environmental Justice and Citizen Science in a Post-Truth Age (2020, University of Manchester Press). She is founder and co-editor of Toxic News, a quarterly e-magazine about toxic pollution in everyday life.

Indicative Reading:

Perry, K 2020, 'Climate Reparations: An Internationalist Approach for the Twenty-First Century',

Image Source: U.S. Customs & Border Patrol

February 3, 2021
3:00 - 5:00 pm