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Climate Justice Series: Environmental Casteism and Climate Disaster

Past Event

January 26, 2024

10:00 am - 11:30 am est

The humanitarian impact of the climate crisis on vulnerable communities, which have historically contributed the least to climate change, is now recognized in scholarship and policy. The question of financial payments–from developed to low-income countries– for loss and damage resulting from climate change was front and center recently at the world’s largest climate gathering, the 2023 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28).  What has received far less attention is climate justice within countries, such as India, that have deep-rooted and intersecting structures of inequality based on caste, gender, and religion. 

Please join the Ambedkar Initiative at the Institute for Comparative Literature & Society, the Center on Global Energy Policy (CGEP) at Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs, the SIPA Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Climate & Engagement (DEICE) Committee, Columbia Climate School, and South Asia Institute for a series of discussions examining social and economic justice issues related to climate change and energy transition in India. The first session, “Environmental Casteism and Climate Disaster,” will focus on how the climate crisis is reinforcing the vulnerabilities of oppressed communities and highlight the importance of an anti-caste framework for research and practice.  

Two experts, scholar Srilata Sircar and Pulitzer-Grantee Journalist Suprakash Majumdar, will be in a conversation moderated by Deepali Srivastava, editor of CGEP’s Energy Explained. Dr. Anupama Rao, director, the Institute for Comparative Literature and Society, and the convenor of the Ambedkar Initiative will deliver welcome remarks. This series honors the legacy of Columbia University alum and India’s civil rights icon, Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar (1891–1956) as an economist and an environmental rights leader, whose vision builds a bridge from past to present.

Biography

Dr. Srilata Sircar is a lecturer in India and global affairs at the King’s India Institute, where she leads the “Introduction to Global Affairs” and “Contemporary India” modules. Trained as an urban geographer, Sircar received her doctoral degree from Lund University, Sweden in 2017. With a prior background in history and development studies, her research interests include urban political ecology of South Asia, the politics of caste in infrastructure-building, and the political economy of subaltern urbanization. Srilata is a contributing writer for Feminism in India.

Suprakash Majumdar is a Pulitzer-Grantee Journalist working on social justice issues in South Asia through the lens of caste. They have worked on a range of issues ranging from climate justice, politics, and COVID-19, analyzing underreported issues in underreported communities. They’ve been published in The New Humanitarian, Time Magazine, VICE, Al Jazeera, Rest of World, and more.


This webinar will be hosted via Zoom. Advance registration is required. Upon registration, you will receive a confirmation email with access details. The event will be recorded and the video recording will be added to our website following the event.

This event is open to press, and registration is required to attend. For media inquiries or requests for interviews, please contact CGEP Communications ([email protected]).

For more information about the event, please contact [email protected].

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