Labour Studies Index

Updated: 2022-05-16

Organized labor and the politics of nuclear energy: The case of the Canadian Nuclear Workers Council

Document type Article
Author Savage, Larry
Author Soron, Dennis
Journal Capitalism Nature Socialism
Volume 22
Date 2011
Pages 8-29


Nuclear energy is one of the predominant false solutions being offered up by contemporary capitalism's power elite in a futile effort to reconcile the goal of environmental sustainability with limitless growth, profit, and accumulation. Incorporating environmental needs into the economy ultimately means not only developing new eco-friendly products and technologies, but changing everything about how people produce and consume and how they travel and live. To this end, the contemporary labor movement needs to increasingly put its own independent and proactive vision of progress and ecological transformation on the table instead of simply allying with employers and perpetuating its dependence upon existing structures of production and consumption. The Canadian Nuclear Workers Council's (CNWC) alliance with the nuclear industry reflects not only the organization's stake in protecting jobs, but also its inability and unwillingness to challenge the deceptive employment versus environment discourse and the dominant mode of economic growth.