Ecofeminist Energy Illiteracy: Greta in Alberta Oil Country

25 Pages Posted: 6 May 2021

Date Written: May 4, 2021


This paper rebuts Keller (2021) and the feminist view that Greta Thunberg’s 2019 visit to ‘tar sands’ Alberta sparked ugly push-back by pro-oil activists due to ‘patriarchal petroculture’ rather than this resistance being a response to an on-going geopolitical ‘green’ transnational trade war against Alberta. This paper will examine how Greta is the exploited ‘walking native advertisement’ for a transnational social media/social engineering project established by several carbon offset promoters. Greta is not a true example of ‘spectacular’ mediated transnational girlhood (Projansky 2014), but rather she is a figure contrived. Greta Thunberg’s earnest and naïve climate concerns have been exploited by the rich and powerful; a child with a black and white world view due to her Asperger’s’ ‘super power’. This paper deconstructs the fallacious logic and confirmation bias of an ecofeminist perspective that is clouded with energy illiteracy.

Keywords: transnational girlhood, petroculture, misogyny, Greta Thunberg, Tar Sands Campaign, Alberta, climate change

JEL Classification: F51,Z13,Z18,L31,L38,L71,L78,F18,K32

Suggested Citation

Stirling, Michelle, Ecofeminist Energy Illiteracy: Greta in Alberta Oil Country (May 4, 2021). Available at SSRN: or

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