Mining for Meaning: the Geoethics of Extractive Industries
Extraction of metals and minerals remains essential to most technologies aiming to sustainably meet the global demand for energy and resources. The recent development of geoethics within the geosciences aims to reflect on the social, political and environmental implications of geoscientific knowledge and practice. However, this sub-field has developed in parallel, rather than in conversation, with recent feminist, indigenous and decolonial approaches within geohumanities. This project initiates international collaboration between scholars in geohumanities and geosciences, alongside communities impacted by extraction, to develop interdisciplinary grassroots understandings of geoethics. The project team will use three mining sites with different political, colonial and economic contexts — a halted diatomite mine in Foulden Maar, New Zealand; a platinum mine in the Bushveld, South Africa; and a polyhalite mine in North Yorkshire, England —to ask what geoethics means in and between these contexts. Findings will inform policy recommendations and the creation of pedagogical resources on geoethics.
Principal Investigator: Dr Anna Davidson, University of Huddersfield