Conflict over the extraction of coal and gas resources has rapidly escalated in communities throughout the world. Using an environmental justice lens, this multidisciplinary book explores cases of land use conflict through the lived experiences of communities grappling with such disputes. Drawing on theories of justice and fairness in environmental decision making, it demonstrates how such land use conflicts concerning resource use can become entrenched social problems, resistant to policy and legal intervention. The author presents three case studies from New South Wales in Australia and Pennsylvania in the US of conflict concerning coal, coal gas and shale gas development. It shows how conflict has escalated in each case, exploring access to justice in land use decision making processes from the perspective of the communities at the heart of these disputes. Weaknesses in contemporary policy and regulatory frameworks, including ineffective opportunities for public participation and a lack of community recognition in land use decision making processes, are explored. The book concludes with an examination of possible procedural and institutional reforms to improve access to environmental justice and better manage cases of land use conflict. Overall, the volume links the philosophies of environmental justice with rich case study findings, offering readers further insight into both the theory and practice of land use decision making.
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