As I take the time to reflect on the semester and my experience working at CSE, I am in the midst of processing what I learned and also setting goals for the new year.
As previously mentioned in another post, one of the greatest challenges I faced was that of bridging the gap between academia and the real world experience when doing policy work. During many points I was question the Ecotype that summarises the dichotomy that exists between the ideal and reality. As policy makers are tasked with helping manage, mitigate and adapt to climate change and global warming, the ideal and reality are something that need to be given much consideration. This is seen in moving toward renewable energy or transitioning and weening off what are considered better fossil fuels such as fracked gas. This also invokes the dichotomy that exists between what is radical and what is incremental when thinking about this change and moving forward.
One of the things I have been able to do through this experience and my reflections of current and past classes is think about the extent to which issues related to climate change and also global warming are extremely complex and complicated as a result of the number of stakeholders in each and also their connections to politics, law, policy, corporations and justice.
Corporations influence politics and lobby in order to sustain their industries despite the fact that they are harmful to the environment and also may negatively impact specific communities. Policy makers and activists are thus tasked with fighting for both the human and nonhuman world and make efforts that can be both successful or unsuccessful depending on the law and state. However, with persistence many of their goals are met.
Though I am constantly reminded that within these corporations there are people with families who are trying to support themselves and are sometimes painted as being the problem.
Lastly, these thoughts employ me to think about scale in relation to the various environmental problems we face and also the people involved. All stakeholders and systems are interconnected and thus it is important that solutions take into account everyone of them. And so as I move forward in crafting the work that focuses on fracked gas and its usage I will be trying to think about all key actors and process within these industries and the people and how one can find ways to ensure the greatest benefit is afforded to all stakeholders.
I would like to thank CSE for this opportunity, Elizabeth Safran my advisor and also the ENVS department and all professors I have taken classes with that will enable me to move forward in my work and develop my critical thinking skills.