Pipelines of Exclusion

Study Hall

Getting a tip from people affected by climate inequalities is very different from the by-invitation-only reporting of Harris’s and Tarbell’s — that is, dispatches from the underbelly of fossil fuel giants. The latter strategy is “sexy,” Oaster at High Country News acknowledges. “Instead of… trying to distance ourselves from our privileges, we should be using them,” they said. “If you can get in the room with a bunch of executives when they’ve let their guard down because you look like one of them and you speak their language, then you can draw a lot out of those conversations that other people can’t get to — and we need that.”

But Mahoney thinks such reporting can reward heroics and white saviorism. “Everyone should have a role in combating this crisis, but I don’t think that message necessitates white people being at the center,” he said. “We don’t need white intervention to fix things rather than a stepping back.”