Shannon O'Lear brings a geographer's perspective to environmental politics. The book considers issues of climate change, energy, food security, toxins, waste, and resource conflict to explore how political, economic, ideological and military power have contributed to the generation of environmental issues and the formation of dominant narratives about them. The book encourages the reader to think critically about the power dynamics that shape (and limit) how we think about environmental issues and to expand the reader's understanding of why it matters that these issues are discussed at particular spatial scales. Applying a geographer's sense of scale and power leads to a better understanding of the complexity of environmental issues and will help formulate mitigation and adaptation strategies. The book will appeal mainly to advanced students and researchers from a geography background, but also to social and political scientists who wish to look at the topic from this different perspective.
Shannon O'Lear is a Professor of Geography and Environmental Studies at the University of Kansas. Her research has focused on energy, environment, and politics in the South Caucasus. She has also published on environmental terrorism, territorial conflict, and genocide. She teaches courses on environmental policy, environmental geopolitics, and on Russia and Eurasia. She has won a prestigious W. T. Kemper Fellowship for her teaching and her work with students. She is an active member of the Association of American Geographers and has served as President of the Political Geography and the Russian, Central Eurasian and East European specialty groups of the AAG. In addition to her teaching and research, Dr O'Lear is active in outreach to encourage students to become more thoughtfully engaged in geography and environmental studies. She is highly respected by both faculty and students as an outstanding researcher, teacher, and mentor.