Environmental justice in coastal systems: perspectives from communities confronting change

Lau, Jacqueline D., Gurney, Georgina G., and Cinner, Joshua (2021) Environmental justice in coastal systems: perspectives from communities confronting change. Global Environmental Change, 66. 102208.

PDF (Published Version) - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives.

Download (545kB) | Preview
View at Publisher Website: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gloenvcha.2020...


Life in the Pacific is characterised by interconnected, fast and slow socio-ecological change. These changes inevitably involve navigating questions of justice, as they shift who benefits from, owns, and governs resources, and whose claims and rights are recognized. Thus, greater understanding of perceptions of environmental justice within communities will be crucial to support fair adaptation. We contend that an environmental justice approach offers a theoretical foundation to help illuminate key concerns and trade-offs as communities navigate global change. Here, we apply an empirical environmental justice lens to the use and customary management of coastal resources in Papua New Guinea. Through two case studies, we examine perceptions of distributional, procedural and recognitional justice. We find similarities and differences. There were common concerns about the injustice of unequal fishing pressure and destructive methods, but in one case, concerns about people’s material needs overrode concerns about non-compliance and unequal costs. In the other case, deliberative decision-making served as a platform for not only negotiating and re-defining the distribution of costs and benefits, but also airing grievances, thereby strengthening recognition of different people’s values and concerns. In addition, we find that as coastal developing communities face increasing social and environmental changes, the procedures for governing resources and thus the means to make fair decisions about distribution, is inextricably connected to recognitional aspects of justice, such as respect, that can confer or undermine legitimacy. The heterogeneity of justice criteria in our cases emphasizes the need to elicit and understand plural justice perceptions in different contexts.

Item ID: 65284
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1872-9495
Keywords: Socio-ecological change; Coastal communities; Empirical equity; Customary management; Papua New Guinea; Legitimacy
Copyright Information: © 2020 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license
Funders: Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies (ARC CECRS), James Cook University (JCU), Australian Research Council (ARC), Pew Charitable Trust, Paul M. Angell Family Foundation, CGIAR Trust Fund
Projects and Grants: ARC CE140100020, ARC FT160100047, CGIAR Research Program on Fish Agri-Food Systems (FISH) led by WorldFish
Date Deposited: 09 Dec 2020 02:54
FoR Codes: 44 HUMAN SOCIETY > 4406 Human geography > 440604 Environmental geography @ 50%
41 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 4104 Environmental management > 410404 Environmental management @ 25%
45 INDIGENOUS STUDIES > 4518 Pacific Peoples society and community > 451818 Pacific Peoples perspectives @ 25%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970116 Expanding Knowledge through Studies of Human Society @ 50%
97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970105 Expanding Knowledge in the Environmental Sciences @ 30%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9606 Environmental and Natural Resource Evaluation > 960605 Institutional Arrangements for Environmental Protection @ 20%
Downloads: Total: 1060
Last 12 Months: 24
More Statistics

Actions (Repository Staff Only)

Item Control Page Item Control Page