Friday 16 April 2021

Authoritarian Populism and Climate Emergency in Hungary (MPSA2021)

The populist turn from an anti-climate position to an authoritarian populist green agenda in Hungry has been elaborated in this paper. First, the theoretical background of environmentalism and democracy/autocracy will be analysed. It is to say that the relationship between democracy and the environment is quite contradictory, we can say that although democracy has a demonstrable effect on the quality of the environment and sustainability, it is not worth absolutizing. That is why we should put an emphasize on the environmental approach of authoritarian regimes. From 2010, the Orbán regime elaborated a controversial attitude toward green politics, on the on hand, it can be characterized climate denialism and demolition of environmental institutions, on the other hand, a green Fundamental Law has been accepted. In the second half of 2019 and early 2020, the regime started to create a new conservative green agenda. Although, this authoritarian populist greening is far not based on the eco-authoritarian traditions. In this paper, it has been challenged that the authoritarian populist actors are hostile to environmental policies. The Orbán regime proved very adaptive in the case of climate emergency and it is about to elaborate an own climate agenda. At the same time, it also means that the regime is unable to face with the real nature of climate emergency. The crisis caused by the COVID-19 has been used by the regime to introduce an exceptional power and ruling by decree. In fact, the regime relied on exceptional governance before the COVID-19 crisis since the migration crisis of 2015. The authoritarian populist regime recognized the political opportunities of the exceptional governance long before the overlapping crisis.

Environmental Political Theory: Planetary Politics Thu, April 15, 10:40am to 12:10pm CDT (5:40 to 7:10pm CEST)

Chair: Andy Scerri*, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

Attila Antal, Eotvos Lorand University: Authoritarian Populism and Climate Emergency in

Kamran Moshref, The Graduate Center, CUNY: Towards Planetary Political Theory: Hannah Arendt’s Earth Vision

Disc.: Andrius Galisanka, Wake Forest University and Andy Scerri, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State