Energy Cafe: Saving energy, saving the Revolution: Energy efficiency and revolutionary ethics in the Cuban transition

Hosted by Dr Gustav Cederlöf, School of Global Studies, University of Gothenburg, Sweden. 

In the pursuit of socialism, Cuba become one of Latin America’s most oil-dependent economies. When the Soviet Union collapsed, the country lost 86 percent of its crude oil supplies. In the face of this shock, Cuba started to develop a low-carbon economy based on economic and social reform rather than high-tech innovation. In this talk, Gustav Cederlöf introduces his new book, The Low-Carbon Contradiction (UC Press, 2023), to argue that energy efficiency – simultaneously a thermodynamic, economic, and cultural phenomenon – plays a key role for our understanding of Cuba’s period of low-carbon transition, a period that some have called “a real-life experience of degrowth”.

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The Energy Café is an informal, open and inclusive space where people across University of St Andrews, from undergraduates to Professors Emeriti, can come together for an hour to share ideas about the energy research they are working on. It is intended to encourage collaborations,  expand research horizons, and inspire new ideas and questions about issues of energy.

Hosted by the Centre for Energy Ethics, the Energy Café is not limited to one discipline, one department or one school – it is open to everyone.


Feb 06 2024


12:00 pm - 1:00 pm