EUC Climate Seminar examines populist environmentalism

image shows a forest and stream

The next instalment of York University’s Faculty of Environmental & Urban Change (EUC) 2023-24 Climate Seminar, taking place on Oct. 19 from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. in 140 Health, Nursing & Environmental Studies Building, features geographer Kai Bosworth speaking about the role of populist environmentalism in contemporary struggles for climate justice.

Kai Bosworth
Kai Bosworth

Bosworth, an assistant professor of international studies at Virginia Commonwealth University, will present a talk titled “Pipeline Populism and the Climate Cycle of Struggles: 2010-2020,” which will describe the rise and demise of left-populist environmentalism as one tendency within the “cycle of struggles” over climate in the 2010s. This tendency, he says, can be found in Upper Midwest pipeline opposition movements, in moves towards mass mobilization such as the People’s Climate March, and in student and youth movements advocating for a Green New Deal.

Bosworth’s book, Pipeline Populism: Grassroots Environmentalism in the 21st Century (University of Minnesota Press, 2022), examines pipeline opposition movements in the central U.S. and the ways they have transformed the politics of climate justice. It argues that while a form of environmental populism challenges the climate movement’s history of elitism, it also remakes hierarchies of race, class and nation to compose its political subjects.

York University’s Faculty of Environmental & Urban Change is bringing climate crisis scholars and activists to the University on a regular basis through its Climate Seminar. All are welcome to attend, either in person or virtually via livestream. Those interested in attending can register at