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Accepted Paper:

Energy Transition in Europe: exploring the interplay of sacredness and sustainability through a juridical anthropological inquiry among Romanian orthodox communities.  
Simona Fabiola Girneata (University of Rome La Sapienza)

Paper Short Abstract:

Exploring the theme of sustainability in Romanian Orthodox communities reveals interesting cultural practices on response to the EU Green Deal. The EU regulatory approach efficiency-focused, fails to ensure a just energy transition that should instead consider local knowledge as renewable resources.

Paper Abstract:

My research investigates the link between the perception of justice and sustainability in Orthodox communities in rural areas of Romania. Through ethnographic study, it aims to assess the significant impact of cultural and religious principles on local responses to environmental regulations introduced by the European Green Deal. Fieldwork has highlighted a complex relationship between justice and sustainability, presenting challenges in the energy transition context, often stemming from the incompatibility of new regulations with local cultural practices. Understanding justice and sustainability within these communities is firmly rooted in cognitive mechanisms infused with deep spirituality, revealing an intriguing dynamic between the internal and external forums.

Western secularization, by separating law from its cultural and religious foundation, has contributed to creating the illusion of legal objectivity. This illusion obscures cultural subjectivity in justice interpretation, creating a dichotomy between the internal sphere, imbued with cultural values, and the external sphere representing the formal legal system. Such separation appears to hinder fruitful dialogue between these spheres. Moreover, the forced and mechanical implementation of provisions leads to local inconsistencies and injustices, as the categories of "environment" and "sustainability" are overlaid without considering the complexity of their meanings. While community regulations specify procedural elements, they often focus on efficiency standards without fully integrating local diversity into goal definition. To develop effective sustainability plans, it will be crucial to consider local variables in terms of energy efficiency, work and production models, and the anthropology of relationships between individuals and the environment.

Panel OP190
Enabling just ecological transitions: mobilising sacred knowledges and cosmologies to address polycrisis
  Session 1 Thursday 18 July, 2024, -