University of Oulu

Lujala, P., Hooper, A., & Purcell, M. J. (2021). The environmental spoils of war. In R. Matthew, E. Nizkorodov, C. Murphy, K. A. Goodrich, A. Hooper, B. Maharramli, M. J. Purcell, & P. Wagle, Routledge Handbook of Environmental Security (1st ed., pp. 115–128). Routledge.

The environmental spoils of war

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Author: Lujala, Päivi1; Hooper, Ashley; Purcell, Maureen J.
Organizations: 1University of Oulu
Format: article
Version: accepted version
Access: embargoed
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: Routledge, 2021
Publish Date: 2023-06-22


Why is armed civil conflict more common in resource-dependent countries than in others? This chapter examines how rebel access to natural resources affects conflict. Using data on gemstone and hydrocarbon localities throughout the world and controlling for the spatial and temporal overlap of resources and conflict, results indicate that when resources are located inside the actual conflict zone, the duration of conflict is doubled. Interestingly, oil and gas reserves have this effect on duration regardless of production status. In addition, a country-level analysis suggests that onshore oil production increases the risk of conflict onset; offshore production has no effect on onset. These results support the assertion that natural resources play a central role in armed civil conflicts by providing incentives and opportunities for rebel groups.

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ISBN: 978-1-315-10759-2
ISBN Print: 978-1-138-09229-7
Pages: 115 - 128
DOI: 10.4324/9781315107592-12
Host publication: Routledge handbook of environmental security
Host publication editor: Matthew, Richard A.
Nizkorodov, Evgenia
Murphy, Crystal
Type of Publication: A3 Book chapter
Field of Science: 519 Social and economic geography
Copyright information: © Routledge. This is an Accepted Manuscript of a book chapter published by Routledge/CRC Press in Routledge Handbook of Environmental Security on 22 December 2021, available online: