27 August 2022

Letting it all out! PARIS REINFORCE at the Petrocultures 2022 conference in Norway

PARIS REINFORCE researchers, Alevgul Sorman and Esther Galende-Sanchez from the Basque Centre for Climate Change (BC3), took part in the Petrocultures 2022: Transformations conference, which was held in August 24-27, 2022 at the Norwegian Petroleum Museum and a nearby conference venue in Stavanger, the energy capital of Norway.

We live in turbulent times, and the role of petroleum is at the heart of global and local political debate about how we should rebuild after COVID-19 and address our worsening crises of climate and international stability. A transition to a world without oil as its primary source of fuel and energy is vital if we are to reach the climate targets set by the Paris Agreement, but the pathway, feasibility, and timing of such an unprecedented transition is still hotly debated. We know that oil will come to an end, but whether its closing date is set by emptied reservoirs, greener alternatives, or political decisions, is still to be determined. Recognising that the “age of oil” is being challenged, Petrocultures 2022 brought together scientists, artists, activists, journalists, and politicians to discuss transformations and ways forward from our current dependency on oil cultures with a particular focus on the humanities and social sciences. It hosted presentations, exhibits, and conversations about the transformations needed to influence the transition from our current culture and dependency on oil, aiming to create a forum for constructive exchange about the way green transition initiatives are narrated—including the way oil is narrated in the past, present, and future—across social and political divides.

Alevgul and Esther presented in the session on Oil Behaviours, with their findings from a deliberative dialogue conducted in Spain on how behavioural and emotional drivers can lock us into petroleum-intensive mobility and consumption patterns or move us forward toward climate action. You may read more on the dialogue here.

Becca Wilgosh from Concordia University and Alevgul Sorman also presented their work on labour environmental proposals for a “just transition” in the Canadian context.

The agenda of the event can be found here.