Renewable Energy and Class Struggles: Slurry and Stratification in Germany’s Energy Transition


Jennifer Carlson examines the material and social dimensions of contemporary energy transitions in the village of Dobbe in the East Frisian Peninsula. Here, efforts to support the Energiewende frequently intrude upon the lives of rural inhabitants in the form of intensive cultivation and the use of fertilizers. Non-farmers feel either unable or disinclined to participate in energy democracy because they believe that farmers control energy governance in the area—a perception that has resurrected old tensions between these two social classes. Ultimately, Carlson shows that materiality and its sensory manifestation within communities is central to forging positive social attachments to energy.