Paper No. 51-1
Presentation Time: 2:05 PM
CLIMATE CRISIS: PETROLEUM. COMMUNITIES. IMPACT
The climate crisis is complicated by the ever-increasing demand for energy. Fossil fuels, derived mainly from petroleum and coal, the ubiquitous source of energy in the world is undeniable. In sync with the rapid increase in fossil fuels use since the 1800s, parallel increases in greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide and methane, as well as increases in global atmospheric temperatures have been observed. Thus, the significant contributions from the burning of fossil fuels to the global rise in atmospheric carbon dioxide during the 20th century is unquestionable. In consequence, we are amid a worsening global climate crisis this 21st century. As the world continues to rely on petroleum for its energy and other goods, the distribution and impact of its benefits and harm are starkly disproportionate along economic and social lines. Similarly, the intensity associated with climate disasters and their impact is also disproportionate along economic and social lines around the globe, between countries and between communities within national boundaries. Historically, the involvement of marginalized communities has not been rigorously documented in discussions related to hydrocarbons exploitation, and the experiences of these communities have received limited considerations. Consequently, historically excluded communities have remained disadvantaged, under-developed, and are now disproportionately impacted by climate disasters. Industries have an opportunity to lead in efforts to lift communities and mitigate damage. Let us reflect on this overlap between the petroleum sector, the climate crisis, and the impact on historically excluded communities.