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Petro-Capitalism

  • By: Gabriela Valdivia
  • In: Green Politics: An A-to-Z Guide
  • Edited by: Dustin Mulvaney & Paul Robbins
  • Subject:Environmental Sociology, Environmental Technology, Policy & Management, Environmental Policy & Law (general)

Petro-capitalism is a capitalism that hinges on the production, exchange, and consumption of petroleum. Petro-capitalism is central to the development of today's society. Geopolitical analysts describe the dynamics of petro-capitalism in terms of competition over access and rights to petroleum-producing areas around the world, a competition linked to issues of resource scarcity and energy security. Political economists, in contrast, argue that the interactions between local histories, larger processes of material transformation, and unequal power relations have shaped petroleum's role as a “strategic commodity” in the current capitalist world order. Yet more traditional political economists argue that attention must be paid to how and under what conditions competing petroleum producers (capitalists) and petroleum-producing countries control overproduction and oversupply of petroleum.

Petroleum is the basic unit (commodity) of ...

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