Trade and environmental justice in Latin America

Peter Newell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


This article explores the extent to which and the ways in which the processual and distributional elements of the contemporary politics of trade and environment in Latin America can be understood from the perspective of environmental justice concepts and praxis. It is argued that there exists an increasingly intimate relationship between the pursuit of trade liberalisation and the achievement of environmental justice, one which is recognised and acted upon by a growing number of social and environmental activists in Latin America. Insofar as struggles around access to resources and the location of hazard are increasingly affected by global and regional relations of production, trade has an impact upon the pursuit of environmental justice, altering the rules of the game and the strategic challenges faced by those seeking to defend the interests of poorer groups in this context. Likewise, issues, discourses and strategies of the environmental justice movement increasingly feature in contestations around trade policy. They bring to the fore key questions of political economy regarding the distribution of wealth and who gets to decide this, who benefits from trade liberalisation and who bears the cost, and whose resources are being negotiated on whose behalf.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)237-259
Number of pages23
JournalNew Political Economy
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2007

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