Concentrated power in world politics is made up of ideas and supporting material resources and institutions. The material resources all come from nature, yet ecology is usually underappreciated in international relations as a source of power. Powerful countries control resources, economic elites command value in ecology and more importantly, systems of power arrange ecological sources of power for their maintenance. A counter-environmental movement is afoot that is having important effects in world politics. This movement is 'environmental skepticism' which casts doubt upon the reality or importance of environmental problems, particularly those which threaten sustainability such as climate change, environmental epidemiological threats from chemicals, biodiversity loss, and renewable resources. Jacques examines the political implications and processes of environmental skepticism in the context of critical international relations theory and global ecological justice propositions.
'Environmental scepticism is a blunt weapon wielded by desperate and self-interested apologists to perpetuate an archaic system predicated on the destruction of the Earth and her communities. Peter Jacques provides us with the powerful and nuanced conceptual tools required to disarm the skeptics, mount a robust defence and safeguard our common future.' William Hipwell, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand 'Peter Jacques has written the most comprehensive and deep work on environmental skepticism I know. Jacques does not just refute the environmental skeptics. He surrounds them, demonstrates their anchoring in industrial capitalism, dissects their worldview, explores the ontological ground of their discourse - and points the way forward to a better alternative. A necessary book about a subject that must be confronted.' Joel Kovel, author of The Enemy of Nature and editor of Capitalism Nature Socialism '...a book that will serve as a provocative, important and well-documented resource for upper-level undergraduates, graduate students and scholars.' Environmental Politics 'If you've ever wondered who the proverbial "They" is, then you might want to spend time with Peter J. Jacques's thoughts on the environmental countermovement. The book is a broad synthesis of literature from the environmental movement, the countermovement of Environmental Skepticism, and the literature describing the world stage where these two fronts collide.' Journal of Environmental Practice '...Environmental Skepticism is an excellent and timely book, well above the average, not only in environmental studies, citizenship studies, and political science, but it draws on ethics, media, and cultural studies as well. Academics, undergraduates, and environmental skeptics will certainly learn from this admirable synthesis as well. The author's style is lively, accessible, and always clear...essential for academic and public libraries, and should serve as an essential reference in its field.' Governance 'Peter Jacques's Environmental Skepticism provides a necessary and welcome foundation for confronting those who deny the problems of global environmental change. Jacques argues that environmental skepticism is a powerful movement that enables human societies to disassociate with nature, deny responsibility for non-human and similarly marginalized others, and unwittingly precipitate civilization's collapse.' Global Environmental Politics 'In this passionate book, Peter Jacques offers wide ranging reflections on a host of modern pathologies - scientism, economism and imperialism, among others - and links them to the anti-environmentalist ideology he calls environmental scepticism... for those interested in the big questions of our time, Environmental Skepticism offers useful insights on crucial issues.' Political Studies Review