The story of the first Earth Day is inspiring: it had a power, a freshness, and a seriousness of purpose that are difficult to imagine today. Earth Day 1970 created an entire green generation. Thousands of Earth Day organizers and participants decided to devote their lives to the environmental cause. Earth Day 1970 helped to build a lasting eco-infrastructure—lobbying organizations, environmental beats at newspapers, environmental-studies programs, ecology sections in bookstores, community ecology centers.
In The Genius of Earth Day, the prizewinning historian Adam Rome offers a compelling account of the rise of the environmental movement. Drawing on his experience as a journalist as well as his expertise as a scholar, he explains why the first Earth Day was so powerful, bringing one of the greatest political events of the twentieth century to life.
In this short guide, Peterson del Mar untangles this paradox by showing how prosperity is essential to environmentalism. Industrialisation made conservation sensible, but also drove people to look for meaning in nature even as they consumed its products more relentlessly. Hence Englandled the way in both manufacturing and preserving its countryside, and the United Statescreated a matchless set of national parks as it became the world's pre-eminent economic and military power. Environmentalismconsiders both the conservation and preservation movements and less organized forms of nature loving (from seaside vacations to ecotourism) to argue that these activities have commonly distracted us from the hard work of creating a sustainable and sensible relationship with the environment.
Concepts are thought categories through which we apprehend the world; they enable, but also constrain, reasoning and debate and serve as building blocks for more elaborate arguments. This book traces the links between conceptual innovation in the environmental sphere and the evolution of environmental policy and discourse. It offers both a broad framework for examining the emergence, evolution, and effects of policy concepts and a detailed analysis of eleven influential environmental concepts.
In recent decades, conceptual evolution has been particularly notable in environmental governance, as new problems have emerged and as environmental issues have increasingly intersected with other areas. “Biodiversity,” for example, was unheard of until the late 1980s; “negative carbon emissions” only came into being over the last few years. After a review of concepts and their use in environmental argument, chapters chart the trajectories of a range of environmental concepts: environment, sustainable development, biodiversity, environmental assessment, critical loads, adaptive management, green economy, environmental risk, environmental security, environmental justice, and sustainable consumption. The book provides a valuable resource for scholars and policy makers and also offers a novel introduction to the environmental policy field through the evolution of its conceptual categories.
Richard N. L. Andrews, Karin Bäckstrand, Karen Baehler, Daniel J. Fiorino, Yrjö Haila, Michael E. Kraft, Oluf Langhelle, Judith A. Layzer, James Meadowcroft, Alexis Schulman, Johannes Stripple, Philip J. Vergragt
The essayists – Viriato Soromenho-Marques, J. Baird Callicott, José Lima Santos, Tim O'Riordan, Satish Kumar and Marina Silva – invite readers to reflect on these ground-breaking works and examine their historical importance, as well as what they should mean to us today and what relevance they will have to future generations.
More than just books about the environment, these are also philosophical treatises, in that they increase our understanding of the natural world and of ourselves, calling us "to weigh and consider", as Bacon put it. In particular, they make us reflect on the need to constantly redefine the purposes of progress, the economy and society. How we relate to nature is a crucial aspect in the plans we make as a species, and as individuals; and every one of these books inspires a more respectful relationship, both with nature and humanity, and consequently with ourselves.
The six essays in this book are the result of a series of conferences organised in Lisbon by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation with the support of the American Embassy in Portugal. Its *raison d'être* was to revisit the ideas that have shaped the environmental movement, seeking inspiration to deal with what looks like a very challenging future. The significance of such timeless concepts is now more apparent than ever; and these evergreen books are full of ideas that retain their spark even in our difficult times. This is what makes them classics.
Environment: Why Read the Classics? is a provocative book and will be essential reading for all those concerned about the state of the world.