Trailer: “How to Blow Up a Pipeline”

April 9, 2023


Andreas Malm is not a household name, except in certain circles. A professor of human ecology at Lund University in Sweden, he is also the author of How to Blow Up a Pipeline, a slim manifesto in which Malm lays out a radical case for climate action:

“Damage and destroy new CO2-emitting devices. Put them out of commission, pick them apart, demolish them, burn them, blow them up. Let the capitalists who keep on investing in the fire know that their properties will be trashed.”

In his book, Malm makes clear that any attack should be on “luxury” emissions and not “subsistence” emissions: Aston Martins are fair game; ambulances are not. And he doesn’t offer explicit instructions for exploding things so much as an argument for aggressive action, one convincing enough that director Daniel Goldhaber developed a movie version (now in theaters) in which a motley crew joins forces to blow up an oil pipeline in Texas.

For the record, my take: The best strategy against the fossil fuel industry is to use less, build out clean energy, and continue to educate people on the facts.


2 Responses to “Trailer: “How to Blow Up a Pipeline””

  1. J4Zonian Says:

    Aside from the moral argument, the practical one is that violence, even against property—which of course in the US is much more sacred than life—engenders violent resistance. In the US now those much more willing to wreak violence are the right wing lunatics denying climate catastrophe, opposing efficiency, wiser lives, renewables, & EVs, & trying to destroy democracy. It’s much easier for them to interrupt our mission using sabotage & violence than for us to interrupt theirs.

    A middle way, sticking to the Gandhian principle of demonstrating commitment & attracting support through self-suffering, is peaceful blockades & other assertive direct peaceful action. It accomplishes many of the same ends, including making fossil projects cost more.

  2. gmrmt Says:

    Aside from the inevitable deaths from law enforcement there WILL be accidental deaths and innocent bystanders eventually. Given how simple engineering issues have been politicised this would definitely be spun into something that would actually harm renewable rollout.
    The time, effort and money put into such an enterprise would be far better spent haranguing governemnt representatives.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: