: On Contested Ground: The Australian Workplace As Site of Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation

Thursday, 19 July 2018: 12:40
Oral Presentation
Caleb GOODS, University of Western Australia, Australia
Continuous and alarming scientific research tells us that the world is failing to mitigate and adequately prepare for climate change. To limit or reverse these planetary ecological shifts we need to reimagine the socio-economic and political structures of contemporary society. A central, yet often overlooked, aspect of this reimagining is the contemporary workplace. Climate change is and will increasingly impact work, workplaces and workplace relations. The varying responses of business, policymakers, community, environment groups and organised labour within the Australian context suggests climate change as a workplace issue is not well understood and is highly contested. This paper ask why and in what ways climate change has failed to move from the periphery to been embedded in Australian workplace relations, labour legislation and business practice. This assessment is built upon semi-structured interviews with Australian based employer associations, unions, environmental organisations, human resources managers and sustainability managers. The paper concludes by consider climate change and work as at the core of the various actors positions around climate change and yet very much at the periphery of the wider climate debate. The workplace as site of climate change mitigation remains on contested ground.