The commodification of nature and socio-environmental resistance in Ecuador: An inventory of accumulation by dispossession cases, 1980-2013

Sara Latorre, Katharine N. Farrell, Joan Martínez-Alier

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36 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

© 2015 Elsevier B.V. This article aims to advance understanding of the relationship between social metabolism, the commodification of nature, local regime changes, and patterns of resistance to accumulation by environmental dispossession during the most recent phase of global capitalism. Ecuador is a resource-rich periphery country that has moved after 2007 from a neoliberal to a post-neoliberal policy regime. By analyzing 64 socio-environmental resistance cases in the period 1980-2013, we focus on the continuities and changes in the relationship between environmental dispossession and resistance under the two regimes. We find that while resistance to agri-food projects has diminished, having enjoyed some success under during the post-neoliberal regime, resistance to infrastructure and mineral extraction projects has remained steady, with the impacts from environmental dispossession remaining much like those observed before 2007. At the same time, major social investments financed through natural resource extraction and export, combined with the introduction of constraints on the media and public assembly, have created a political climate in which the resistance observed during the neo-liberal period is now a socially deviant behavior.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)58-69
JournalEcological Economics
Volume116
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2015

Keywords

  • Commodity frontiers of nature
  • Ecuador
  • Environmental dispossession
  • Environmental resistance
  • Political ecology
  • Social metabolism

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