The Green Swastika Environmentalism in the Third Reich

From Malthus to Mifepristone: A Primer on the Population Control Movement

The History of the Population Control Movement 1798 to 1998

Dictatorship of the Landlords - The Green Roots of the Housing Crisis

Cultural Marxism and the Alt-Right

The Meaning of Corporatism

356 Enviro-critical Websites and additional info about the organized enviro-critical movement

Pierre Trudeau: Eco-fascist

A Primer for the Paris Climate Talks

Jorge Bergoglio's Green Encyclical

Environmentalism and Aboriginal Supremacism (Part 2): The Mobilization of Aboriginal Opposition to the Northern Gateway Pipeline

Environmentalism and Aboriginal Supremacism in Canada - Part 1 - Idle No More

Of Buffalo and Biofuel - More Tales of Environmentalism in Alberta

War on Coal

In Praise of the Jobs, Growth and Long-term Prosperity Act (Bill C-38)

Environmentalism and Edmonton Land Use Politics

The "Tar Sands" Campaign and the Suppression of North America's Energy Potential

Desertec and Environmentalism's North African Campaign

The Environmental Movement in Alberta

Environmentalism 400 BC

Spirit of NAWAPA

Waldheim's Monster:
United Nations' Ecofascist Programme

Early 19th Century British "Environmentalism"

Environmentalism's Appropriation of Christianity

Environmentalism's Environment

The Continental Counter-Enlightenment

The American Eco-Oligarchy update

If Only This Were About Oil


Who is Affraid of The Big Green Wolf

The Gore Presidential Bid

The Groundbreaking Career of Doctor Science

The English Environmental Elite, Global Warming, and The Anglican Church

The Great Global Warming Hoax

The American Oligarchy's Economic Warfare Campaign on British Columbians

Environmentalism under Sociomovementology's Macroscope

By William Walter Kay


Environmentalism is a social movement. In 2004 Blackwell Publishing released their 10th sociology text, The Blackwell Companion to Social Movements – their first on the topic of movements. The text was pitched as “a comprehensive survey of the current state of the art in Social Movement Studies” written by “a virtual who’s who’ of social movement scholars”. Only one of 29 chapters focuses on the environmental movement but other chapters discuss environmentalism and describe movement commonalities, such as their interactions with the media and the state, relevant to environmentalism. The chapter on environmentalism is by an unblinking True Believer. Companion has other problems but lives up to its billing by relaying top contemporary social movement analysis. This essay compresses and supplements information from Companion about environmentalism and hopefully is useful to the movement’s critics.


Social Movements and their SMOs
EMOs: Resources and Repatoires
Environmentalism: Numbers, Members, Motives and Emotions
Environmentalism’s Rootes
Rootes and the Great Awakening
Anti-Nuclear Reaction
The Institution of Environmentalism
Intra and Inter Movement Competition and Cooperation
Appropriation d’ etat
Environmental Globalization
Ethnomental Environicity

Social Movements and their SMOs

The academy best equipped to study social movements is sociology. Sociologists believe in a hierarchy of sciences with mathematics forming the basis for understanding physics which can be, after a leap in complexity, developed into an understanding of chemistry including the molecules underlying biology a grasp of which hoists one up to sociology: the “monarch of science”. Sociology is on top because its subject matter is the incomprehensibly complex matrix of conflicting human wills and because science itself is a social product. Sociology of science is a sub-discipline of sociology. Another sub-discipline, social movement research, is sociology’s fastest growing field. In American sociology journals the portion of articles on social movements grew from 2% in the 1950s to 10% in the 1990s. (1) This process is continuing such that centrifugal forces inherent in academia may spin off “sociomovementology” into a separate discipline.

A social movement is an armada of politically motivated organizations, of various forms, floating in a sea of individual supporters contributing to the Cause in various ways. Social Movement Organizations (SMOs) can be highly restricted elitist clubs or widely accessible public associations. (2) SMOs can be incorporated societies or informal gatherings. Movements are collective challenges by people sharing purpose and identity; who define themselves as movement members and are perceived as such by those within the movement and by external observers. Members are in oppositional relationships with other activists who seek control of the same stake. (3) Movements engage in political and cultural conflict to promote or oppose social change. Movements give rise to counter-movements. (4) Social movements sustain interactions with the state and usually address their demands to the state. Movements may be complete political outsiders or semi-institutionalized parts of the state. Movements seek greater control of the state. (5) Social movements use non-conventional tactics at least part of the time. (6) Near synonyms of “social movement” are: “solidarity community”, “interest organization” “collective actor field”, and “organized advocacy network”. (7)

Whisper “movement” after each following word(s): abolitionist, anti-slavery, democracy, citizen’s, reform, civil rights, human rights, affirmative action, anti-busing, religious, Islamicist, intra-religious, anti-clerical, fundamentalist, environmental, Green, environmental justice, NIMBY, global justice, anti-globalization, anti-dam,  anti-nuclear, anti-road, anti-apartheid, gay and lesbian, abortion rights, family planning, population control, animal rights, anti-hunting, fascist, ethnic-nationalist, ethnic-racial, separatist, nationalist, Native American, white separatist, hate, Rastafarian, African liberation, Chicano, peace, anti-war, labour, socialist, poor people’s, welfare rights, squatters, Townsend (Old Age pension), psychiatric patients, women’s, suffrage, feminist, Temperance, anti-drunk driving, anti-child abuse, anti-pornography, anti-child labour, youth, home schooling, AIDS patients’, diaspora and irredentist. These are the movements mentioned in Companion and the text does not purport to have provided an exhaustive survey. The tally multiplies when social movements are divided into national components (Chinese democracy movement, Polish environmental movement, etc.) Cataloguing is complicated by a replicating plethora of sub-movements and counter-movements.

Social movement scholars adopt various approaches. The “political process” approach arose in opposition to previous characterizations of social movements as consisting of resentful, marginalized people whose impatience and irrationalism drew them to “politics by other means”. Social movements were seen as aggressive reactions of frustrated malcontents before the revelation that social movement strategists were at least as logical and educated as the sociologists studying them. The political process approach assumes social movement actors are rational decision makers who think they can change the political situation to their advantage at affordable costs. (8) Social movements are seen as engaging in the rational, systematic garnering of support from individuals, parties, businesses, and other associations. Movement leaders articulate interests of underlying constituencies. (9) Political process theorists search for “political opportunity structures” nested within society that exert vacuum-like pulls on movement activism and delimit a movement’s capacity to gather and deploy resources. (10) Opportunity structures range from major political ruptures to non-profit society regulations. (11) A related research approach spotlights how movements mobilize resources. “Resources” primarily means money and labour but includes intangibles like goodwill, know-how and symbols. “Mobilization” means enhancing a movement’s readiness to act collectively. (12) Resource mobilization theorists often use a business lingo treating SMOs like entrepreneurial franchises. Resource mobilization scholarship provides practical advice for managers of the scores of thousands of formally structured, professionally staffed SMOs in today’s “movement world”. (Some sociologists take resource mobilization theory to task for neglecting sections of the women’s, anti-poverty and other movements that are more loosely organized and inclined to participatory democracy and volunteer activism.) (13)
Until the mid-1970s the only social movement worthy of a European sociologist’s attention was the labour-socialist movement. In this discourse the great divide was Marxism. “New Social Movement” (NSM) scholarship emerged in opposition not just to Marxism but to the overall fixation on economic motives. NSM scholars emphasize cultural-moral issues rather than material ones. NSMers study: movement ideology content, individual activists’ motives, collective action arenas, and the cultural context of movement symbols, norms and identities. (14) They believe the feminist, peace, homosexualist, environmentalist, animal rights, and anti-globalization movements are “new” because they eschew wealth distribution concerns for life-quality, autonomy, and identity concerns. (15) NSM’s principal constituency are university students and profs keen to be identified within prevailing patterns of differential mobilization. (16) Of course, these are not “new” social movements, nor are they separate movements, nor do they transcend the tawdry racket of economic redistribution. NSMs are a re-garbing of an old movement warhorse: conservativism.

EMOs: Resources and Repatoires

For environmentalism, like all movements, resource scarcity equals inactivity. Resource availability has been demonstrated to be the factor determining the rate and spread of protest, and of the founding of new organizations, in the women’s, minority rights, and environmental movements. (17) To acquire resources Environmental Movement Organizations (EMOs), like all SMOs, rely on internal and external sources with all except the smallest EMOs using multiple means. EMOs access resources through: patronage, self-production, aggregation and appropriation. (18) Patronage is the most common source and its most common sources are: government contracts, foundation grants, and private donations. (19)

Resource mobilization theory discovered that movement money mobilizing involves someone from the movement asking someone for money. (20) Many factors determine whether someone will give money to a movement but being asked is primary. Money requests are categorized as broadcasting versus narrowcasting and professional versus volunteer. Narrowcast money-raising concentrates requests on a few deep pockets of money, such as governments or philanthropists, while broadcast money-raising targets the dispersed, shallow pockets of the public. Most EMOs engage in both fundraising strategies and both types have been professionalized. Some EMOs rely on telemarketing and direct-mail money mobilizing and farm the work out to commercial firms. As well, professional consultants are often hired to write grant applications and arrange contacts for large donor fundraising. Money mobilizing strategies vary in the portion of money raised going to “overhead” (the costs of fundraising itself). Direct-mail, telemarketing and door-to-door canvassing are notoriously low-yield/high-overhead. (21) On the other hand, in spite of high overhead, Greenpeace-style door-to-door and street-corner canvassing provides EMOs with the collateral benefit of commanding an army of semi-mercenary, well-indoctrinated front-line political workers. Broadcast money raising sometimes means EMO volunteers and in-house staff putting on fairs, rummage and bake sales, brunches, car washes, walk-a-thons, telephone canvassing bees, raffles, and commission item sales. EMOs sell calendars, t-shirts, buttons and hats and other logo-laden merchandise. (22) Rewards double up in successful actions such as benefit concerts where ticket and merchandise sales cover the cost of what is also a mustering of potential recruits. (23) While bake sales are nice, research shows most EMOs were founded by specific cash infusions from foundations or individuals. (24) Studies also show EMOs started with big packets of seed money from a patron continue to depend on that patron. (25) From the patron’s and the EMO’s perspective, the preferred scenario following the start-up grant is the EMO diversifying its income base to include other patrons and varieties of self-production.

Social movement mobilizing is a rich man’s game. Broader economic inequalities are replicated in collective action patterns making mobilization easier for the wealthy. (26) They have financial resources, flexible schedules and social contacts unavailable to most. (27) Movement issues resonating within privileged groups predominate. EMOs involved in conservation are singled out as exemplars of this tendency. (28) Self-mobilizing poor people are an endangered species. (29) The glaring failure of the Companion is its cowardly inattention to philanthropy. (30) The book mentions how, in the early 1960s, changes in US federal laws governing philanthropic foundations greatly increased support for social movements but the change is unexplained. (31) Worse, the text provides a single estimate of the quantum of US philanthropic-foundation giving:  “A conservative estimate puts that support at close to 90 million dollars in 1990. Nearly one third of that 1990 total went to women’s and environmental groups.” (32) Not only is this annual estimate dated, it is ridiculously low. Adjusted for inflation $30 million in 1990 dollars equals about $45 million in 2007. (33) Environmentalism, it is proffered, currently shares $45 million in annual grants with the women’s movement. Please note:
In 2007 the Ford Foundation (assets $13.7 billion) handed out over $500 million in grants. The amount going to EMOs is not precisely determinable but they report 2006 grants, in the $50,000 to $1 million range, to 750 EMOs. In 2007 the MacArthur Foundation (assets $7 billion) made grants $267 million with $82 million going to “sustainability/security”. The Packard Foundation (assets $6.6 billion) made grants of $304 million with $117 million going to their “conservation/science” portfolio. The Pew Charitable Trusts (assets $5.7 billion) gave about 1/3 of their $215 million in 2007 grants to environmentalist projects. The Rockefeller Foundation (assets $4.1 billion) granted $125 million, and while they use the most cryptic foundationese, about $40 million probably went to EMOs. There are thousands of foundations, albeit only a few dozen as large and environmentally-friendly as the above. Nevertheless, Companion’s estimate of foundation giving directly to EMOs is under 2% of the total. What is more, foundation grants to culture, religion, academia, “community development”, “reproductive choice”, and “civil society” are part of an omnibus program furthering a single, pro-environmentalist agenda. Companion’s big money blindness is incompetence bordering dishonesty. (34)

Principal EMO expenditures are office rent, office equipment and staff salaries. A modern EMO needs internet access but many still use volunteer-run phone banks and mail-outs. (35) Resources are directed to organizing activist events and creating cultural products necessary to further mobilization. (36) A process is coveted wherein mobilization snowballs. New recruits and financial resources are aggregated to enhance potential for further acquisitions of money, equipment, supplies, skills, labour and volunteers...
Sociomovementologists love “repatoires”. Movements have “symbolic repatoires” consisting of words, photos, logos, slogans and arguments. “Tactical repatoires” consist of deeds movements do to get resources and deeds done with those resources to further mobilization. An activist from the 1960s US New Left recounts their tactical repatoire as:
“petitioning, rock throwing, canvassing, letter-writing, vigils, sit-ins, freedom rides, lobbying, arson, draft resistance, assault, hair growing, nonviolent civil disobedience, operating a free store, rioting, confrontations with cops, consciousness raising, screaming obscenities, singing, hurling shit, marching, raising a clenched fist, bodily assault, tax refusal, guerrilla theatre, campaigning, looting, sniping, living theatre, rallies, smoking pot, destroying draft records, blowing up ROTC buildings, court trials, murder, immolation, strikes, and writing various manifestos or platforms.” (37)
The more mundane tactical repatoire of a contemporary EMO worker-activist might be:
“...taking part in a demonstration, attending a meeting, taking part a sit-in occupation of a building, contacting allied organizations to solicit support for an effort to change a law, contributing money, contacting a public official, stuffing envelopes, or representing the group at a table where movement literature is distributed.” (38)
EMO executives’ tactical repatoires are more like:
“...framing grievances and formulating ideologies, debating, interfacing with the media, writing, orating, devising strategies and tactics, creatively synthesizing information gleaned from local, national, and international venues, dialoguing with internal and external elites, improvising and innovating, developing rationales for coalition building and channelling emotions...” (39)

Environmentalism: Numbers, Members, Motives and Emotions

A stark difference exists between environmentalism’s size and other movements’. Environmentalism is “the most comprehensive and influential movement of our times”. (40) Environmentalism is“the single most important social movement of the 20th century”. (41) Big movements have big aims. Environmentalist’s goal is “the scarcely less ambitious task of re-creating civil society”. (42) They dream of norms cascades spiralling into mass value change. Environmentalism socializes nation states into compliance.  Of “Western governments” in general, “none now dares to refuse at least to pay lip service to environmental concerns.” (43) In Western Europe in particular, environmentalism’s “struggles for the hearts and minds of the public and for the ears of the powerful have been more completely won.” (44) The Western public places greater trust in EMOs than their own governments. (45) EMOs have:
succeeded in sensitizing mass publics, politicians, and other decision-makers to environmental issues that would not otherwise have been so salient....EMOs have set the agenda of environmental reform and succeeded in framing the issues as matters of global collective responsibility. As a result, governments that now resist such framing, as those of the US and Australia do with respect to climate change, do so in defiance of majority public opinion.” (46)

After two global blitzes (1970-73 and 1989-90) EMOs claim tens of millions of supporters. (47) In 1993 the International Social Science Programme estimated 10% of the American, New Zealand and Dutch populations were EMO members. Nearly 10% of Australians and over 5% of Canadians, Israelis, Germans, Norwegians and Brits held some form of EMO membership. (48)

National environmental movements’ sizes are elusive, shifting quanta. The US environmental movement shrank between 1974 and 1980, grew until 1992, then shrank again. (EMOs with established local chapters devoted to local concerns fared better than EMOs with centralized structures and global concerns. Between 1990 and 1998 Greenpeace USA’s membership declined from 2.35 million to 350,000 and annual revenues declined from $40 million to $21 million). (49) In a 1995 USA General Survey 8.5% of Americans claimed EMO membership; a percentage surveyors interpreted to mean 19 million supporters. (50) Another 1995 study estimated the US was home to 10,000 EMOs with an aggregate (overlapping) membership of 40 million, combined annual income of $2.7 billion, and assets worth $5.8 billion. (51) A 2000 study estimated aggregate membership of 15 national US EMOs at 9.5 million. (52) These inflated figures were pared down in a 2002 study of 12 leading US EMOs. This study excluded EMOs like World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), Greenpeace and National Wildlife Federation (NWF). Greenpeace’s membership list is always dubious while NWF’s list contained 3 million schoolchildren. The remaining 12 EMOs were estimated to have a total membership of 3.9 million. (53) (Nowhere in Companion is there accounting for the statistically skewering affect of individuals with multiple EMO memberships.)

EMO-member-to-population density is at least as high in Western Europe as in the US. (54) In a 2000 British national survey 6% claimed membership in a group whose “main aim is to preserve or protect the environment”. Inscrutably, 20% claimed membership in one of the questionnaire’s 10 listed EMOs. (55) Estimates placed late 1990s “aggregate membership” in British EMOs at 5 million. Between 1971 and 1981 membership in Britain’s several oldest EMOs expanded fourfold. Between 1981 and 1991 this number doubled and continued growing, albeit less impressively, through the 1990s. Half the British EMOs active in 1999 were founded after 1980. Between 1970 and 1979 membership in Friends of the Earth (UK) and Greenpeace (UK) mushroomed 6-fold and 10-fold respectively. Membership in these newer, mass-based EMOs peaked in the early 1990s. (56)

As environmentalism embedded into the Dutch state in the 1990s, participation surged. National EMOs grew from 30 to 68 and collective membership ballooned 75%. A 2001 study estimated 3.7 million citizens, of a national population of 16 million, were EMO members. Dutch affiliates of Friends of the Earth and Greenpeace each boasted several hundred thousand members. (57) The 1990s saw a rise in radicalism among Dutch animal rights groups and membership in extremist EMOs soared to 30,000. (58)

Half of German EMOs active in 1999 were under 20 years old and half those were under 10 years old. German EMO membership increased little from 1988 to 1994 but from 1994 to 1996 it jumped to 4.4 million. In 1996 there were 120 German EMOs with 9,000 local chapters. Greenpeace, Germany’s largest EMO, had 90 chapters and 530,000 donors. (59)

What does EMO “membership” mean? A member can be someone fully engaged on a daily basis with an EMO or it can mean someone making a small annual financial contribution to it. (60) To some researchers “membership” should be restricted to active participants in mobilizations. However, the vast majority of “members” simply pay dues; occasionally responding to campaigns for additional funds. Few volunteer labour. EMOs relying on direct-mail and telemarketing have legions of tenuous “check-book/credit card” members. (61) This strategy produced impressive numbers in EMO annual reports and initially this loose “conscience constituency” was easily tapped for funds, but more recently such revenues are falling and the strategy is blamed for movement aimlessness and demobilization. (62) By contrast, during the 1970s heyday many start-up EMOs got by on charismatic leadership and a reservoir of eager volunteers. Within the modern movement volunteers play a marginal role; many putting in time awaiting a movement job. Most EMOs are professionally managed and staffed. A 2000 study found professionals far more effective in matters such as the critical work of coalition-building than were volunteers. Pros have more time for cultivating relationships with other EMOs and are better connected to other movement professionals. (63)

EMOs recruit relentlessly. The professional EMO manager divides a world of potential “sympathizers” into those contacted and those yet to be. While continuing to trawl for potential sympathisers, EMO managers divide the contacted between the “motivated” and “non-motivated”. While not giving up on the non-motivated, the motivated are pressed to become dues-paying, labour-donating “participants”. (64) Research reveals disembodied recruitment technologies, like direct mail and mass media appeals, generate lightly motivated participants while networking and face-to-face interaction are more successful in recruiting adherents into stronger participation roles. A study of environmental activists in Milan showed 78% were recruited through private networking. It also showed while recruitment into mainstream EMOs was through personal acquaintances, recruitment into radical EMOs occurred after the participant was ensconced in the movement milieu. (65) 

Mass mobilization requires movements extend their appeal for participants far beyond their own membership, even beyond those who would logically be sympathisers. Many attending mass demonstrations are not movement members nor fully conscious of the movement’s nature. (66) In the late 1960s, when EMOs recruited millions, a new relationship system took over. In accordance with “mass society theory” the broadened appeal turned the movement into a magnet for alienated isolates drawn to collective behaviour in search of an anchor. (67) A host of microsociological follow-up studies of persons caught up in social movements shows biographical trajectories are permanently warped by mass recruitment. Many continue to define themselves as movement adherents long after their activism subsides. Studies show such people have lower than normal incomes, high rates of divorce and episodic and non-traditional work patterns. Fortunately, many find employment in education. (68)
The topic of emotions returned to social movement research after being dropped in the 1970s when discussing emotions was seen as a throw-back to when social movements were bunched with prison riots and fashion crazes. Emotions being ‘in’ again, researchers now delve into the underlying emotional appeals of movement frames. Movement researchers study how certain feminist organizations stimulate the emotion of disgust at patriarchy in recruits and how homosexualist activists nurture the emotion of anger toward some of their movement’s opponents. Environmentalism’s mass membership is emotionally motivated. EMO campaigners make emotional appeals cultivating “affective bonds” to forests, coastlines, historic buildings or endangered species. EMOs manipulate the emotion of dread when propagandizing scares like climate change. (69) Emotions are real issues for EMO managers. Juggling the emotional needs of staff and volunteers is more difficult for EMOs than regular businesses because their movement has drift-netted for soreheads for 40 years. Rookie green-collar worker-activists are often surprised, and emotionally disturbed, to find themselves in apolitical enterprises. Enviro-activists struggle emotionally in organizational settings where banal dictates of running offices and campaigns are paramount and where internal interaction rules relegate political conversations to requests for invitations or to self-interested, emotion-laden expressions of “mandatory momism”. (70) EMO strategists have learned that by networking with other EMOs, with which they can hold talk-fests, their worker-activists can meet their emotional needs for democratic participation. Through conferences and retreats, EMO worker-activists invent their “political selves” and alter their organizational practices. (71) Emotional issues also arise from the environmental movement, like the New Left and the Civil Rights movement, being flagrantly male-dominated. Even in delicately political correct settings like the animal rights movement, gendered beliefs about scientific objectivity and empathetic identification leads to men being preferred spokespeople (even by women) despite majority female membership. (72) Practical movement researchers study emotions material to the business of recruiting and canvassing, particularly regarding the etiquette of preparing contexts for political conversation, assessing grounds for interaction, and establishing footing for such discussions. (73)

Environmentalism’s Rootes

Companion’s chapter on environmentalism is by movement tenor Christopher Rootes. In a volume, where on several occasions environmentalism is described as a new social movement, Rootes describes a movement going back generations. He praises environmentalism as “the great survivor” whose longevity derives from its syncretic, pragmatic, and adaptive organizations. (74) Rootes is aware of the misconception about environmentalism’s age but blows this off with: “The modern environmental movement set out on a path it thought to be wholly novel, the subsequent precursors being an unlooked for surprise.” (75) This is a polite way of saying garden variety environmentalists, including academics, are chumps lacking an elementary historical cognisance of the social forces leading them down the path. 

Rootes cuts and pastes centuries of movement history into a few muddled pages. He figures environmentalism evolved from hunting and health lobbies. He mentions in passing: “the forests and parks of European royalty and nobility were the precursors of reserved areas that in due course became state and national parks”. (76) But he nowhere discusses the political economy of the supply and demand of land nor the aristocracy’s hostility to new world colonization. To the faithful, environmentalism is a cultural movement unsullied by base material considerations.

Across the urbanizing world during the late 19th and early 20th century, campaigns were waged for clean water, safe waste disposal, and other public health improvements. Rootes arbitrarily appropriates this activity unto “reform environmentalism”. He then concedes there was no coherent movement behind this activism and those involved were not “environmentalists”. To Rootes, public health activism: “appears to have been a discrete series of campaigns mounted by distinct and separate interest groups rather than a single coherent social movement.” (77) He should have added thesecampaigns were not connected to reforestation, species preservation, organic farming or climate change or much else we associate with environmentalism. He might as well have appropriated advances in medicine and aviation unto “reform environmentalism”.

On German environmentalist history, Rootes offers two consecutive sentences:
“Nature protection organizations in Germany date from the late nineteenth century. New groups emerged in and after the early 1970s.” (78)

He bypasses 70 years including when environmentalism was called “Nazism”; when the chief forest preservationist was Herman Goering; the leading animal rights activist was Heinrich Himmler; and the main organic farming lobbyist was fellow war criminal Walther Darre.

He acknowledges environmentalism’s ideological proximity to 19th century Romanticism with both movements extolling man’s spiritual relationship to nature. He believes this viewpoint formed the core of American conservationism in the late 1800s, most audibly championed by the hunting lobby. However conservationism, according to Rootes, was not concerned with campaigns for wide-ranging social change but with short-term, pragmatic politics. Nevertheless conservationists founded the Sierra Club and organized the cathartic Hetch Hetchy dam battle. Although Rootes neglects to mention it, the surge in conservationism/preservationism surrounding the Sierra Club’s creation was backed by President Teddy Roosevelt. The Cause was later endorsed by Franklin Roosevelt, and Kennedy’s boosting of Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring kicked-off the dramatic 1960s movement re-invigoration. Rootes is aware preservationism/conservationism (renamed “environmentalism”) was proffered as the “consensus issue” to Americans divided over the Vietnam War. Environmentalism flourished under Johnson’s administration and especially Nixon’s. The 1970 Earth Day extravaganza, with Congress recessing and 20 million Americans roped into environmentalist teach-ins, marked the climax of the Kennedy initiated revival and the turning point in environmentalism’s institutionalization. Earth Day appropriated symbols and tactics of 1960s radical activism to transcend social dissonance and channel dissent toward the “environmentalist consensus”. More decisively, the hoopla was coterminous with the launch of several US Federal Government initiatives including the Environmental Protection Agency. However much the anti-war movement deserves credit is disputed; Congress ended the Vietnam War by withholding funds in 1972. The anti-war movement’s dissipation left a residue of organizations, trained activists and sympathetic middle class adherents many of whom were brought on board the environmental movement. (79) The 1960s imbroglio enhanced the acceptability of non-conventional forms of political participation such as demonstrations, boycotts and civil disobedience – also adopted by environmentalism. (80) The movement’s “newness” was evidenced in 1969-70 when David Brower melodramatically departed the Sierra Club to found the more radical, activist Friends of the Earth. (81)

Rootes contends: “The emergence of the environmental movement was made possible by the new political space opened up by the student revolt and the New Left”. (82) He adds: “The New Left served as a transition to a new environmental politics in which the question of Nature could no longer be separated from the question of society itself.” (83)The American New Left are a mystery. (Contemporaries contended they were a double misnomer.) Companion makes dozens of references to them, with little clarification. Some date them to the early 1960s Civil Rights movement; others start them late in the 1960s protest wave. Rootes implodes them in 1970. (84) Some maintain New Lefters switched to environmental and anti-nuclear activism where they reshaped beliefs and tactics. Ex-New Lefters are credited with bringing “direct action” into the anti-nuclear movement. (85) Another scholar mentions how a convergence of the New Left and the homosexualist movement in 1969 was the juncture in homosexualist movement history when they embraced: the “unity in diversity” frame, new organizational forms and public tactics. (86)

Rootes and The Great Awakening

Rootes’ history of environmentalism perches upon on this compounded fiction:
“Increasing scientific understanding of environmental impacts and the extension of higher education to ever larger proportions of the population contributed to increasing public awareness of and concern about environmental degradation that had itself accelerated as a result of the increasingly effective technological exploitation of scientific knowledge.” (87)

To Rootes, environmentalism is the by-product of a wider scientific revolution. He stutters on this:
“Only with further advances in scientific knowledge and the development of ecology as a discipline did reform environmentalism acquire coherence and become established as a dominant discourse.” (88)
“Demands for environmental protection were fed by increasing scientific understanding of the unintended consequences of rampant industrialization and by individuals’ personal experiences of environmental degradation.” (89)
And again:
“Increasing awareness of the environmental depredations of economic development was generating increasing dissatisfaction with the social conservatism and the political timidity of established conservation organizations.” (90)

There are more lines like this and his sermon only runs 26 pages. To Rootes, environmentalism consists of well-meaning, well-educated citizens swept away on a “great wave of international concern” prompted by untarnished scientific revelation. (91)

Rootes provides a total of two (2) examples of “environmental depredation” – London’s 1952 “Attribution-to-Smog” enigma and the 1969 Santa Barbara oil spill. (92) His claim 4,000 Londoners died from smog in 1952 is dated. The BBC magnanimously upped the fatalities to 12,000 to commemorate the foggy attribution’s 50th anniversary. (93) This figure is sure to soar and the body-count neglects the emotional toll. Imagine the survivor’s guilt of those living through such a die off without anyone noticing at the time! (94) The Santa Barbara oil dribble, at 3 million gallons, wasn’t a major spill. There have been spills several hundred times larger. It wasn’t even a big spill for the time. The socio-historic significance of the Great Smog and Santa Barbara spill was the unprecedented media hype these events received and the subsequent use of that hype to modify state policy. Rootes, the “human action scientist”, doesn’t go there. He completelymisses the play. The media hype and policy changes were movement mobilizations, not scientific revolutions.

Rootes mentions Australian environmentalists ran into difficulties after easily understood urban environmental problems were tackled, leaving only “contested” issues like “climate change and soil salination” which Aussies find “apparently abstract”. (95) Rootes ignores why these issues are contested but the tale fits neatly into his case that the key is education:

“In Britain, the simpler and less sophisticated forms of environmental concern were most often found among the less educated while attitudes approximating an ecological worldview were more often found among the highly educated.” (96)
Rootes stresses how “disproportionately highly educated” environmentalists are. The embrace of “postmaterialism” correlates with environmental activism because it also correlates with higher education. (97) “Postmaterialist clusters” like campuses are places where people take jeremiads of planetary destruction seriously. (And that will be on the final exam.)
Rootes is shamelessly biased! He waxes on environmentalism’s accomplishments:
“There have been many great battles, and many defeats, but it is difficult to imagine that so much of the Californian redwood forests or the Alaskan wilderness, the Great Barrier Reef, the Australian wet tropics or the Tasmanian forests would have been saved without the efforts of environmentalists.” (98)

He champions environmentalism for “its intimate relationship to science, its practical claims to international solidarity, and its ability to offer a critique of and an alternative to industrial capitalism”, concluding:

“No other movement so convincingly challenges the hubris of modern science, or uses scientific expertise so effectively. No movement makes a more convincing claim to being truly global in the scope of its concerns. And no existing movement makes a more convincing critique of the costs of capitalist industrialism to people and planet, or so persistently burns the candle of hope that there is a better way.” (99)


Rootes plugs Greenpeace’s Brent Spar campaign for changing corporate policy and for convincing the masses that oceans should not be “limitless waste receptacles”. He further blesses Greenpeace for saving the ozone layer with their CFC-free refrigerator marketing adding, “Greenpeace, too, developed out of urgent concerns to act and to bear witness, becoming a professionalized campaigning organization distinguished by its skilful use of mass media.” (100) Apart from being Greenpeace propaganda, this statement is a clear case of the EMO tail wagging the media dog. Contrary to Rootes’ brochure, the massive attention suddenly bestowed on Greenpeace in 1970 resulted from media policy changes, not the marketing wizardry of Greenpeace’s founders (who were, nonetheless, media professionals).

Rootes’ treatment of the media as a tertiary neutral player in movement struggles is out of sync with the rest of Companion. One contributor, describing movement conflicts, comments:

“For good reasons, the conflict parties do not consider the mass media just as a neutral mirror. Rather they are aware that the mass media selects, distorts, molds, comments, evaluates, and allies or opposes them during the conflict.” (101)
Another contributor points out:

“Media coverage is seldom neutral and ascribes legitimacy to certain actors, demands and strategies while denying it to others. Thus, the news media pre-structure the information that people receive about contentious events and thereby affect which of them become available as templates for imitation and reaction.  (102)
The same author notes: “Recent research on media selection processes of contentious events has shown mass media coverage is highly selective”. (103)
A third contributor maintains:
The mass media system also has autonomous interests of its own. We should begin with the working assumption that the mass media system is not neutral among different types of carriers – for example, between members and challengers.” (104)

Sociomovementology, sans Rootes, views the media, at a minimum, as an intervening variable in movement contests. The media’s power to grant “standing” allows them to choose who has a voice in any controversy. (105) The media deliberately showcases or ignores people and issues. The renowned effectiveness of movement darling Michael Moore, whose films embarrass big businesses like Nike and GM, is entirely dependent on big media coverage and distribution of his work. (106)

Companion provides ample examples of movement-related media potency and partiality. In 1996, during the Dutroux controversy, the Belgian media conducted a major “consensus mobilization” marshalling hundreds of thousands into the streets for the “White March” that applied decisive pressure on the government. (107) West German television broadcasts into East Germany were crucial in overthrowing the Communist regime (1989). These broadcasts reached large parts of East Germany but not the Elbe valley and, “it is no coincidence that this “valley of the ignorant” as the East Germans used to call it, played a conspicuously marginal role in the revolution”. (108) 1960s television coverage of the US Civil Rights movement created tangible black solidarity transcending local boundaries. (109)

Companion’s media specialist relays the following on media promotion of environmentalist themes:
“...on issues with a strong technological dimension, the theme of Progress through Technology is paired with the counter-theme Harmony with Nature. The counter-theme is sceptical even hostile to technology. The countertheme has as deep cultural roots as the theme. To quote Emerson, “Things are in the saddle and ride mankind.” Much of popular culture reflects the countertheme: Chaplin’s Modern Times, Huxley’s Brave New World, Kubrick’s 2001, and countless other films and books about mad scientists and technology gone wild, out of control, a Frankenstein’s monster turning on its creator.

On the issue of nuclear power, supporters made heavy use of the Progress through Technology theme. But opponents were able to neutralize its power by emphasizing the countertheme of technology that was out of control. During the 1970s, frames emphasizing the counter-theme became more prominent in media discourse than those emphasizing the theme.” (110)

The non-neutral, vital role the media plays in movement contests is a primary movement research topic because while all movement conflict takes place in arenas (parliaments, courts, party conventions, town halls, and scientific congresses) general audience mass media is the “master arena”. Actors in all arenas are in the media’s gallery including sitting politicians and state ministers who self-fullfillingly assume the media’s pervasive influence. (111) The media is a principal medium upon which activist’s work:
“Due to the tremendous role of modern mass media in providing information and influencing people’s minds, virtually all actors engaged in political struggles try to occupy some space in the media by various techniques, such as distributing press releases or staging events that are particularly designed to attract the media’s attention.” (112)

While one contributor stresses the role the mass media plays in day-to-day practical management of conflicts (113) another adds:
“The media is the major channel through which movements recruit members, boost morale of adherents, and convey their importance and messages to the public. Framing work by both movements and media is crucial to how movements are covered and portrayed in the mass media. Social movement leaders, as the actors most centrally engaged in movement framing, devise media strategy, make judgements regarding information provided to media, conduct press conferences, and are usually sought out by media to serve as movement spokespersons.” (114)
Much social movement research concerns the diffusion of ideas and tactics and:
“...the mass media are the diffusion network par excellence, and may communicate innovations between groups who share no social links at all – apart of course from their watching or reading the same news media. Therefore the mass media play a crucial role in the diffusion process.” (115)
The media’s ability to spread and modify movement frames is well-commented on:
“...‘critical communities’... formulate new ‘value perspectives’. Social movements then take these new values to the wider public through activism in the media and the public arena, and translate the generalized values into more restricted but clearly articulated policy claims.” (116)
“The mass media... spread changes in language use and political consciousness to the workplace and other settings in which people go about the public part of their daily lives. When a social movement challenges a cultural code, a change in the media arena both signals and spreads the change.” (117)

Movement scholars study political opportunity structures and:
“...mass media are another component of the political opportunity structure – a component that has both structural and dynamic elements. The structure of the media and the way they operate (their norms and practices) affect the opportunities and constraints under which movements operate. Movement actors typically attempt to attract the attention of the media for their concerns through staging ‘protest events’. The media reports about these events are expected to create public controversy and reinforce the position of sponsors of the movement’s concerns within the policymaking domain...” (118)

As far as resource mobilization theorists are concerned:
“Gaining media attention to a movement’s issues and goals is an important aspect of consensus mobilization. Some evidence indicates that the more material resources an SMO has available and chooses to invest in efforts to achieve more coverage the more it will obtain.” (119)

The prominence of media to movement mobilizing is confirmed by some movements, certainly the environmental movement, developing their own media organs to compensate for the mass media’s alleged failure to properly display their concerns. (120) Using both movement, and mass, media EMOs aim not just to increase their sympathizers willingness for collective action but also to increase the mobilization potential among bystanders through broadening the conflict’s scope, and to pacify their adversaries through neutralizing opposing framing efforts. (121) EMO media strategists strive to improve, or at least maintain, their standing in the media as the recognized voice regarding specific environmental issues. (122) They have learned that connecting issues to mythic themes and cultural idiosyncrasies increases the resonance of their media efforts. Frames with narrative fidelity to regional myths and folk tales resonate. (123) EMO media strategists study how to exploit “suddenly imposed grievances” like industrial accidents. They prowl for celebrity supporters – a guarantee of media attention. (124) Decisions to escalate tactics toward civil disobedience are intimately caught up in EMO media strategy. Some EMOs get trapped in a cycle of needing evermore outrageous antics to warrant coverage. (125) Media presence softens police and judicial treatment of civil disobedience making it easier for EMOs to organize such actions. (126)

To EMO media strategists, “marketing” means exploiting the consumer power of environmentalists. This takes the form of boycotts when EMOs want to threaten a business with sales losses if the business fails to comply with their demands. (127) “Marketing” also means selling product endorsements on the presumption environmentalists will shop where told. Movement-corporate partnerships are a growing industry. One contributor reminds EMO strategists that “purism is a luxury only available to those in the ivory tower.” (128) He quotes O’Dwyer’s Public Relations Services Report wherein businesses are advised to test the waters before engaging in EMO “marketing”. O’Dwyer’s recommends corporations: “Help them (EMOs) raise money. Offer to sit on their board of directors. That can open up a symbiotic relationship.” O’Dwyer’s suggests financing conferences on issues of mutual interest or paying for EMO publications providing “the company gets substantial input” and “the publication has its name on it.” (129)

On the movement “marketing” frontier is PlanetOut Partner – an omnibus organization dedicated to selling the homosexual constituency to retailers. They define themselves as: “a single dominant company, merging with and acquiring media properties old and new, controlled by a single board of directors, owned and answering to a handful of corporate and individual investors, aiming to be ground zero of the gay and lesbian cultural and informational system”. (130) PlanetOut began as a protest against “marketing” that made homosexuals look too normal and assimilated. PlanetOut is an SMO/commercial enterprise selling enhanced access to the homosexual dollar. They, and all SMOs engaged in “marketing”, run the risk of downgrading their constituency from politicized citizens to trite consumers thereby replacing movement members’ sense of agency with a sense of cynicism. (131)

Anti-Nuclear Reaction

Rootes’ wilful naivety about the media tracks his evident belief “science” cannot be twisted by social movements. Companion’s account of the anti-nuclear movement suggests otherwise and supplies further insights into environmentalism’s history. To one sociomovementologist, the US anti-nuclear movement is affirmation of social movement potency:
“By the middle 1950s, a tight policy-monopoly had been constructed by technological enthusiasts in the US centering on the civilian uses of nuclear power. By 1974, not only had the domain-specific subsystem collapsed, but the civilian nuclear option was, for all practical purposes, dead. No new nuclear power plants have been ordered in the US since 1977, and more than a hundred previously ordered plants have been abandoned or cancelled.” (132)

Opposition to American nuclear policy began in the 1940s when scientists led by Danish-born physicist Neils Bohr advocated sharing atomic secrets with other states. The same clique lobbied Allied Generals to use demonstration tests of atomic bombs as opposed to actual use. Some of these scientists opposed using atom bombs even to stop Hitler. (133) Days after the Nagasaki bombing, pundit Norman Cousins’ essay “Modern Man is Obsolete” appeared in Saturday Review. His call for a world government to control atomic technology sparked vigorous debate in universities and newsrooms. (134) In the early 1960s Nobel Prize-winning scientist, Linus Pauling, joined Cousins and Bohr as a celebrity anti-nuclear activist. He pressed the issue of atmospheric testing directly to Kennedy during a White House dinner in 1962 and spoke at a protest rally outside the White House the following evening. Soon after, Kennedy used Cousins to open a negotiating channel to Khrushchev leading to an agreement, immediately endorsed by British PM Macmillan, to ban atmospheric testing. This decision tamped down anti-nuclear activism in the English-speaking world even though the US merely switched to underground testing. Anti-nuclear protests continued in Europe where the movement made less a call for programmatic change and more an inchoate plea for peace. (135) Anti-nuclear campaigns drew support from the Left in the US but more so in Europe where anti-nuclear activism spread rapidly in the 1960s. (136) Scandinavian anti-nuclear activists sought to prevent their states from developing nuclear weapons and NATO from basing weapons on their soil. In West Germany, a left-pacifist movement led by a re-organized Social Democratic Party took to the streets with massive Easter marches calling for an end not just to nuclear weapons but the entire arms race. (137)

The drive against anti-ballistic missiles (ABMs) furthered reliance on scientist-citizen cooperation. (138) During the Johnson years, movement-oriented scientists were deployed in a complex, well-organized opposition to ABMs. The sequence was: “Unable to achieve their goals through conventional politics, institutionally oriented scientists turned to mass politics.” (139) They aired their differences with the Johnson administration in scientific journals and Congressional testimony. They joined the Committee for a SANE Nuclear Policy to pressure politicians and mobilize voters. Nixon ignored them and accelerated ABM development, provoking a protest wave with scientists at the crest. Rallies and teach-ins were held in cities where ABMs were to be deployed. The Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS), formed to organize scientific opposition to the Vietnam War, also pleaded the anti-ABM case before Congress and conducted nation-wide public education campaigns. (140)

The anti-nuclear campaign achieved critical mass circa 1979-81. A major arena of contest was the Atomic Energy Commission where leaks by rogue scientists legitimized opposition to nuclear technology. (141) The ranks of dissident scientists swelled during the Reagan administration after many experts lost access to power. The dominant faction within the US mass media took up the anti-nuclear movement’s critique of the Reagan program “subjecting the President’s policies and advisers to an unusual degree of scrutiny. (142) The media, taking the initiative, re-grouped opponents of Reagan’s security policies under a “Nuclear Freeze” banner opposing military and civilian nuclear development. To its designers, “Freeze” was “the first step in a complicated and comprehensive program to remake world politics”; however, it was framed as “an unfocussed cry for arms control”. (143) In-house UCS scientists became media selected spokesmen for the anti-nuclear movement. When demonstrations and site occupations happened, phones rang at UCS. (144) The anti-nuclear movement succeeded partially because their frame was media hyped but more because the movement widened the range of participants involved in nuclear decision-making. (145) In this view: “When industry lost control of the issue, when the venue had been expanded by the opponents to include licensing, oversight, and rate making, the future was determined.” The anti-nuclear movement exploited federally-mandated regulatory reviews to bring the process of nuclear electrical plant sitings to a halt. (146)

These events edified movement scholars about the efficaciousness of scientist-citizen coalitions:
“...politically active scientists demonstrated how the articulation of a new organizational form (the public interest science organization e.g. the Union of Concerned Scientists) carved out spaces for political mobilization independent of the dominant associations of professional scientists. Within these new organizations, activism generated innovation in organizational style and political critique.” (147)
Another scholar notes:
“...the important role of elite actors, particularly scientists and strategic experts, who mediate between the state and protest movements, identifying which aspects of policy are most vulnerable to assault, legitimating and sometimes aiding insurgent movements, and framing solutions to the political problems that movements cause.” (148)

This helps in fathoming environmentalism’s success as does the following observation:
“The easiest way for the peace movement to reach and mobilize a broad public is inherently problematic: playing on public fears... [but] it is hard to sustain this kind of panic without a broader analytical or ideological perspective.” (149)
One consequence of the anti-nuke mobilization was the formation of an organized, experienced “anti-toxic” movement. What began as protests against military waste disposal in the 1970s turned into opposition to industrial waste disposal, especially in land-fills. (150)

Starting around 1980, NATO’s nuclear force modernization plans triggered convulsions in Europe. (151) New anti-nuke associations materialized to block missile deployment and to condemn the Cold War. Massive marches flooded the streets of Amsterdam, Brussels, Paris, London, Rome, and Bonn. NATO bases were surrounded. In the mid-1980s, the Dutch People’s Petition group wove pre-existing counter-cultural communities into an extraordinarily successful mobilization against deployment. (152) The continent-wide up-swell fostered new peace coalitions prompting national party realignments in several states. NATO modified its plans. (153) The first crop of “Greens” sprang from campuses agitated by the anti-nuke/anti-Cold War mobilization. (154) One scholar flatly asserts: “Western European Green parties originate from the anti-nuclear movement”. The current conflict between Greens and European reform environmentalism is connected to the Green’s appeal to and acceptance of their Cold War leftist allies. (155)

One opportunity structure theorist questions the anti-nuclear movement’s impact. He argues the movement heightened the profile of energy politics but “none of the (anti-nuclear) movements had a strong effect on nuclear power in their country”. (156) In his view, the US energy industries’ market-orientated nature and the availability of cost effective energy alternatives curtailed US nuclear power. On the other side of this continuum, according to this reasoning, was France. The opportunity structure facing the French anti-nuclear movement consisted of a modernizing state with an independent military but without access to hydrocarbon reserves. The French elite coalesced around nuclear generated electricity for the civilian sector and nuclear weapons for the armed forces. France’s unitary constitution made the national state (by 1970, a nuclear juggernaut) the sole arena of contention. Oddly, before the tactic diffused across the West, the international anti-nuclear movement’s first act of obstructive civil disobedience at a nuclear plant construction site occurred in France (1971). (157) Nevertheless, the French anti-nuclear movement was unable to win standing in the media, stimulate resonance in the state intelligentsia or ally with good coalition partners. Of disruptive acts at construction projects across the West, the ones in France caused the shortest delays. Even the 1986 Chernobyl accident, which caused hysteria in Scandinavia, barely rippled the French nuclear policy domain. French government scientists pooh-poohed immediate concerns and reminded citizens that problems of Soviet technology did not apply to French reactors. In contrast, other European anti-nuclear movements, with scientists in tow, used Chernobyl to turn public opinion and stop new plants. (158)

As social movements are defined by extra-parliamentary activity, it is noteworthy Swedish nuclear policy was decided not by protests but by the changing fortunes of a mainstream political party. The Swedish Centre Party (SCP), a top-three party, married the Swedish anti-nuclear movement and adopted a “moral-ecological” platform. In 1976, after the SCP secured the Prime Ministership in a centre-right coalition, a national referendum was held resulting in a decision to phase out nuclear power. The Swedish anti-nuclear movement won because of support within the institutional power structure. The contest did not take place in the streets. (159)

Germany’s unique political opportunity structure pre-ordained a polarized nuclear policy clash. The conflicted Social-Democratic Party ruled during the contest and, like social democrats elsewhere, fended off rising Green Parties by currying support among moderates within the environmentalist and peace movements. (160) The German energy industry was more closely tethered to the state than their American counterparts. (161) The German leftist-pacifist movement was massive and the “hand of Moscow” not entirely mythical. Unlike France, Germany’s decentralized constitution presented their anti-nuclear movement with multiple official arenas, thus improving chances of official recognition. (162) The mid-1970s German anti-nuclear movement was well-organized and violent. By the 1980s a militant alliance appeared at protests, invariably provoking confrontations with local police units who had to be re-grouped and bolstered. (163) Both waves of protest violence in Germany (1988-89 and 1994-97) occurred during peak periods of environmentalist mobilization and, while violence occurred in many environmental contests, nuclear-related violence was most frequent. (164)

The Institutionalization of Environmentalism

A social movement’s level of institutionalization is measured by the size and bureaucratization of its organizations and by the frequency and nature of those organizations’ contacts with the state. (165) Western environmentalism is centered on big bureaucratic EMOs dependent upon big bureaucratic philanthropic foundations and the state itself. (166) Philanthropic foundations are not as noteworthy in Europe where trusts, even associated with political parties like the Greens, are often state-funded.

To these internal-financing movement features, Rootes adds:
“Externally, too, environmentalism has become institutionalized. Ecology has become established as an academic discipline, and universities and colleges now routinely offer programs and courses dealing with environmental issues. Environmental journalism, which has become a recognized specialism, and mass media not only carry programs, sections, or columns dedicated to the environment, but routinely report on environmental issues as part of their regular coverage. Environmental protection agencies have become nearly universal, and environmental ministries have been established and have moved from margins of government closer to the centres of power.” (167)

Environmentalism has installed environment ministries in every modern national and regional state, and as even the biggest EMOs “are minnows by comparison with governments” these ministries are now dominating movement actors. (168) Environmental ministries follow the pattern of other movement-generated agencies (like those in labour regulation and affirmative action) in advancing the Cause even in the absence of legislation. (169) Industrial and land-use policies are often confidentially drafted by environment ministry wonks in quiet consultation with EMO execs and ecology profs. As Rootes sees it:
“...the balance of environmental movement actions has shifted from highly visible protest to lobbying and ‘constructive engagement’ with governments and corporations, much of which is publically invisible but which, no less than more public forms of protest, contests economic and social relations and cultural understandings.” (170)

This closeted process also goes on at the supra-national level; case in point being the integration of EMOs into the UN’s Agenda 21.
The American EMO is a creature of the state. EMOs need the tax privileges and legitimacy of non-profit incorporation. If this status is lost, an EMO’s fund-raising and coalition-forming capacities are seriously impaired. EMOs accept constraints on their activities to maintain their legal status. (171) This legal context compels EMOs toward moderation and professionalism. Moreover, generous tax concessions to “charitable” giving, along with other much-struggled-for philanthropy laws, created the plethora of foundations that created US environmentalism. EMOs by necessity tailor their styles and concerns to harmonize with the foundations. (172) Money, and other assistance, flows to EMOs meeting philanthropic criteria and operating within state guidelines. Nor is this the extent of state involvement in US environmentalism. Many US Federal Government statutes (for example, the Clean Water Act of 1972) stipulate strong citizen participation mandates engendering a range of participatory processes which:
“...provide potential leverage points, venues of participation, and occasions for movement engagement with state-subsidized transaction costs. The extent to which the state redistributes resources in this way varies dramatically across the range of movement issues. In the US those available to environmentalists, for example, are quite extensive...” (173)

This structured opportunity is extensive:
“Federal mandates for citizen participation in regulatory processes span a range of social movement issues and have created what amounts to a national infrastructure of loosely coupled, decentralized venues of potential participation or contention for social movement actors. Each step in mandated regulatory review processes offers a potential leverage point at which SMOs or individual activists can exert either positive pressure to support or modify a proposal or exert negative pressure to resist or halt an endeavour. For example environmental and social impact assessments required since the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 have been used effectively by environmentalists to influence or block a broad range of environmentally damaging endeavours.” (174)

In Britain, the legal fiction EMOs are charities not political pressure groups has secured them tax advantages facilitating institutionalization. Friends of the Earth (UK) and Greenpeace (UK), unusual for British EMOs, declined charitable status to give themselves more political leeway (both subsequently formed semi-independent charitable trusts). (175) But Greenpeace and FoE are merely the visible tip of a gargantuan British environmental movement sustained by elite and state largesse. Money-mobilizing within British environmentalism consists chiefly of bureaucracies requesting funds from bureaucracies. (176)

Swedish EMOs are professional administrators of government wilderness, technology and product innovation programs. Swedish EMOs are officially involved in eco-labelling and in assessing proposed industrial projects in cooperation with large corporations and state authorities. The Swedish Association for the Protection of Nature was transformed when the state privatized much environmental research. The Association is now primarily in the consultation business but, reluctant to scuttle its “people’s movement” role, maintains a presence in land-use disputes. To many, “environmentalism in Sweden has now become so institutionalized that it retains few movement characteristics.” (177) The Swedish model is diffusing across Europe where environmental challenges to industrial proposals, like genetically engineered agricultural products, are morphing into state-run mediation procedures wherein EMOs have state-recognized standing. (178)

Conventional social movement theory presumed bureaucratization/institutionalization was the kiss of death for movements but “environmental movements have beaten the odds” and have not experienced ossification, marginalization or de-radicalization. (179) Yet institutionalized social movements are paradoxical – one cannot be the state and its challenger – thus many prefer to speak of a semi-institutionalised environmentalism. Purists, insisting direct action/civil disobedience are defining movement characteristics, argue only EMOs engaged in those tactics are in a “social movement” (180). The Swedish situation conformed to conventional expectations as environmental protests there declined in number and intensity since the early 1990s as the movement institutionalized. Counter-intuitively, at least initially, environmentalist institutionalization in Germany was not associated with pacification. German environmental protesting became more disruptive. (181) In Britain, confrontational protests and other forms of political violence rose dramatically during the 1990s but were mostly animal rights related, thus on environmentalism’s margin. 1990s British environmental protest rode a general confrontational wave arising from the poll-tax ruction. (182) During roughly the same period, violent environmental protests in Italy and Spain carried on in spite of movement institutionalization but this violence is seen as a spill-over, into the environmental issue domain, of other conflicts. (183)

The growth and diffusion of directly expressed political protest appeared on sociology’s radar around 1970. Late 1980s sociology documented how the recourse to demonstrations in Europe was an everyday occurrence. By the 1990s most environmental protests were routinized. (184) While acknowledging exceptions to the rule, sociomovementologists see a pacification trend, “a euphemization of violence”, wherein non-conventional political participation becomes orchestrated, predictable: conventional. EMOs now have rules for “good demonstrating”. (185) Respectable EMOs shun “groups poor in resources” for whom disruption is a reflex. To illustrate how institutionalized/conventionalized environmentalist protests get, one scholar points to a demo organized by The Promise Keepers. They held a “Stand in the Gap Rally” in Washington DC, to pressure Gap Corporation shareholders (who are also involved in forestry). The Promise Keepers hired a myriad of for-profit companies for every aspect of the event: publicity, security, catering, etc. (Attendance at such events, in addition to the hirelings, is bolstered by volunteers and staff from area EMOs.) This mass outpouring of concern attracted national media attention. (186) It’s a long way from Berkeley ’69. Another researcher notes even “violent” anti-trade protests by French farmers and environmentalists are routinized. French police tolerate limited amounts of symbolic destruction. (187) As he describes it:
“...under the benevolent eyes of the police, demonstrators are allowed to set fire to a bus shelter or a truck with the sole objective of allowing photographs to be taken by the media, before everyone packs up and peacefully goes home.” (188)

Other contributors refer to “paper demonstrations”; professional, choreographed and designed solely to elicit a modicum of media coverage. (189)

Intra and Inter Movement Competition and Cooperation

Rootes believes European and American environmental movements are at the same level of maturity, one measure of which is the strength of the linkages between EMOs. (190) Rootes props up, then knocks down, a straw man scenario of environmentalism becoming so diverse it breaks into separate movements. The reverse seems more likely: environmentalism becomes so centralized it is no longer a movement but a party or church. A rare Companion reference to fascism is on point:
“Some movements go even further in building coherent structures by establishing a key organization that is really the centre of most movement activities. This, for example, applied to the German fascist movement in which the Nazi Party gradually assumed the role of the centrepiece and, in a later period, became the ultimate locus of power and control, so that we no longer speak of a movement but of a centralized hierarchical structure, that is, an organization with various sub-organizations – a bureaucracy with departments...” (191)

The amount of competition and/or cooperation within environmentalism is open to discussion. EMOs, like all SMOs, compete for government and foundation grants. There are also examples of intense competition between EMOs for members. The Bund for German Environment and Nature and the German Nature Bund, two of Europe’s largest EMOs, engaged in a vigorous scramble for the new market in eastern Germany after the Wall’s fall. (192) Some competition is more apparent than real. Greenpeace postures as a more daring version of the WWF and both EMOs broadcast appeals for supporters, but closer inspection reveals they target different constituencies avoiding head-to-head competition. (193) On the other hand, Greenpeace’s un-neighbourly reluctance to ally with other EMOs and their practise of keeping trademarks inviolate during joint campaigns evidences internal movement competition. (194) One researcher sees permanent structural competition, mainly in the US, between national and local EMOs. He believes national EMO’s political motives and activist styles lead them to institutional management of disputes in contrast with the more confrontational styles of local EMOs. (195) Others argue the divide between big EMOs and local ones is illusory; that despite surface tension:
“empirical investigation in the US shows the relationship between informal local groups and formally organized national EMOs is more enduringly complex, with waves of local protest and national campaigning succeeding one another in a, so far, endless procession”. (196)

What appears as thousands of EMOs clamouring for resources and attention under the macroscope is a coordinated effort involving division and specialization of labour. Local campaigners find neglected environmental causes that better resourced EMOs then adopt. (197) Big EMOs provide subsidies and technical advice to fledgling ones. Environmentalism has an intermediate layer of trainers and consultants, connected to big EMOs, functioning as a conduit through which money flows from philanthropists and governments down to local, less-professional EMOs. (198) National EMOs extend legitimacy to small EMOs, affecting the latter’s ability to attract funders and affecting the willingness of authorities to tolerate their antics and the media’s willingness to grant them standing. (199) To environmentalism’s High Command, “grassroots” activism reaches and teaches the masses about green issues, is a school for participation, and provides entry points for fresh ideas and recruits. Upstart EMOs revitalize the movement and make it look socially representative. (200)

The movement’s illusory localism and diversity is exemplified in the NIMBY (Not-In-My-Back-Yard) activist cells found across Western Europe but more so in the US where NIMBYism cohered into a distinct environmentalist flank. (201) Post-WWII German environmentalism grew out of the NIMBYesque “Citizen’s Initiatives” movement. (202) While NIMBY’s tackle diverse issues (opposing Salvation Army shelters or Wal-Marts) not always recognizable as environmentalist, their objective is always to thwart land development: environmentalism’s Job One. (203) That said, most NIMBY campaigns target standard environmentalist issues such as the siting of incinerators, waste dumps and industrial plants. (204) NIMBYs are in the “organizational field” of national environmental movements and there are plenty of dual EMO-NIMBY members.

A uniquely American NIMBY is the “environmental justice” (EJ) group. At first glance EJ EMOs might not appear to be part of a national sub-movement mobilization. People living in America’s impoverished areas see offices operating on shoe-string budgets staffed by activists reflecting the neighbourhood’s ethnicity. These “grassroots” groups appear to be fighting for local water, air and soil improvements and to be motivated by neighbourhood chauvinism. While movement revisionists have cobbled a grassroots EJ history highlighting a few mid-1980s actions, the sole EJ conference occurred during the run-up to Clinton’s election and one of his first presidential acts was to establish an EJ office within the EPA. Then in 1994 he signed Executive Order #12898 mandating environmental equity impact assessments, therewith creating subsidized, legitimating arenas to address racial issues pertaining to industrial waste. (205) Order #12898 also dispatched the National Environmental Justice Advisory Commission (NEJAC) to hold conferences across America to establish state-level environmental equity regulations. Although NEJAC’s operations are autocratic and non-participatory, their conferences provide forums for “environmental justice activists in different regions of the country to build movement capacity, develop movement infrastructure and coordinate activities.” EJ activists “piggy-back” on NEJAC meetings. (206) After receiving their Presidential marching orders, the foundations and EMOs fanned out across America establishing EJ-EMOs in poor ‘hoods. EJ-EMOs are coordinated nationally through the foundation funded Centre for Environmental Health and Justice. (207) EJ activity in white neighbourhoods came to naught because there EJ-EMOs were starved of cash and veteran activists. Moreover, the frame they worked, “close-local-industry-to-fight-toxins”, was warped to caricature by opponents. (208) In contrast the: “African American tributary of the environmental justice movement emerged to national prominence...because black environmental justice activists were able to draw upon the resonant environmental racism issue frame that had already been created”. (209) Their frame is: “white-men-are-poisoning-you”. This frame is also a “resonant movement discourse” in Hispanic neighbourhoods and on Indian reserves. EJ-EMOs are not disconnected grass-roots groups of earnest poor people who coincidently “frame the problem as one of environmentalism racism”, they are a nation-wide mobilization by Big Green spreading racism in America’s poorest locales. Britain’s Professor Rootes steps forward, in a rare boost of the US green movement, to mention how the “Sierra Club and the local efforts of Greenpeace in California suggest that some at least take the environmental justice agenda seriously”. (210)

The most discussed alleged internal environmentalist schism is between “political ecologism” and “reform environmentalism”. Political ecologism also goes by the name “fourth wave environmentalism” and encompasses “eco-feminism” and “deep ecology”, etc. The self-isolating misanthropism of most political ecologists compels them to favour direct action over conventional strategies of state-lobbying, capacity-building and coalition-courting. Deep EMOs are typically small, resourceless cliques controlled by charismatic leaders. (211) They are one of environmentalism’s radical flanks and organize the most disruptive protests. In Australia and the US they usually focus their violence in support of wilderness preservation while in Europe they aim at nuclear energy and industrial waste. The depth of the division between deep and shallow greens is unsettled. Rootes contends relations among EMOs are cooperative “even across the mostly rhetorical divide between environmental and ecological groups”. A European study found an EMO’s original commitment to mainstream conservationism versus radical ecologism over time made little difference in strategies, tactics, and styles. (212) This is certainly the case with ecological EMOs like Friends of the Earth and Greenpeace who borrow the symbolic repatoire of deep ecology to bolster their image but are moderate in practice. Greenpeace actions are only superficially “direct”. In spite of their sometimes extravagant propaganda, they are not an Earth First! or even a Sea Shepherd but rather a pragmatic corporation with assets to lose and “whose agenda falls squarely within the ambit of reform environmentalism”. (213) Radical sounding EMOs are often a revitalization of conservationism, not a departure from it.

The dearth of internal movement competition is evidenced by the great number of coordinating mechanisms within environmentalism. (214) Rootes opines: “the rhetoric of conflict and critique may give a misleading impression of the divisions within environmental movements” whose internal unity is demonstrated by the presence “of networks links of varying degrees of strength and intensity”. (215) The process of structuring links between EMOs is accelerating. (216) One example, of hundreds, is ALARM (UK) which has positioned itself, through fostering contacts and information banks, as the centralizing agency for anti-road protesters. (217) More generally, British environmentalism is regionally and tactically specialized. British EMOs “do not regard each other as competitors but instead practice a division of labour that recognises the particular competences and styles of the various organizations”. (218) This calls into dispute whether “social movement” is an apt phrase for British environmentalism or whether “parallel state” might be more appropriate.

The internet is an important coordinating tool. A 2002 North Carolina study found 55% of 739 local and state-wide EMOs maintained websites. Lists of EMO websites are readily accessible to all EMOs. A 2003 study of the 1,398 US-based SMOs (mostly EMOs) participating in the 1999 anti-World Trade Organization protest in Seattle found 75% maintained websites. (219) 

Another, somewhat dysfunctional, coordinating mechanism is the Green “party family”. Popping up in the 1980s, the “family” soon won representation in the European Parliament and in legislatures and councils across Western Europe. (220) Green Parties prosper in states with proportional representation electoral laws but not where majoritarian systems prevail, as in the US and Britain. In Sweden and Britain where movement leaders enjoyed access to policymakers, Green Parties were greeted with suspicion or indifference because it was feared “party politicization” reduced movement influence. (221) Although the German Green Party grew out of German environmentalism, some argue the party now consumes too much movement labour and money for its electoral and parliamentary support campaigns. (222) Moreover, the party’s mass appeal steers them too close to the urban left for many environmentalists. One “conservative” faction split from the Greens at the founding convention to form the Democratic Ecological Party, and during the 1980s most “conservative” environmentalists found points of departure. The German Greens remain a “non-dominating” yet key player and lobbyist within the movement and very well-connected to other Green Parties and major EMOs. (223) Green Party (UK), being small and innocuous, safely claims to represent British environmentalism but is not a conduit to state-power for lobbying purposes. (224) Green Parties are arguably extraneous to the movement. (225) Not to be counted out, Greens, seeking relevance and the graces of big EMOs, have embraced the trendy new range of “green” issues in health care, consumer affairs and international aid. (226)

Here’s four enviro-coordinating mechanisms not profiled by Rootes or his co-eulogists: The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), founded 1972, currently has a $75 million annual allowance from the UN General Assembly and Environment Fund. UNEP centralizes environmentalist efforts of UN-connected agencies (World Bank, UN Development Program, Food and Agricultural Organization etc.). UNEP also analyzes the global environment, develops international environmental law, advances implementation of environmental norms, promotes mass environmental awareness, provides policy advice to governments and facilitates inter-EMO cooperation. UNEP works through 45 intergovernmental bodies (World Conservation Monitoring Centre, Coral Reef Action Network, Global International Waters Association, Great Ape Survival Project, etc.). Sixty large EMOs are integrated into UNEP governance as official observers. UNEP’s Environmental Liaison Centre hooks up 6,000 EMOs and its Global Ministerial Environment Forum holds annual, week-long conferences attended by 140 national environment ministers. UNEP publishes 20 movement must-reads (Climate Change Bulletin, Earth Views Quarterly, etc.). UNEP was on the ground floor of the Montreal Protocol (ozone holes), the Kyoto Protocol (global warming), and the Rio Summit’s Agenda 21. (227) The European Environmental Agency functions like UNEP on a Pan-European scale. (228) The Environmental Grantmaker’s Association centralizes efforts of 225 foundations dispensing $2-3 billion annually to EMOs. (229) The International Union for Conservation of Nature (World Conservation Union) is celebrating its 60th anniversary this year with its over 1,000 governmental and EMO member groups. (230)

Some sociomovementologists spy an overarching “social movement family” encompassing the environmentalist, homosexualist, animal rights, protectionist and feminist movements. Others speak of a “social movement industry” comprising tens of thousands of homogenizing SMOs that, regardless of their distinguishing features, possess similar values and join common campaigns. This social movement industry pushes social changes favourable to the movement industry. This process is aided by worker-activists’ “highly portable” sense of commitment that allows them to transfer from one movement job to another. (231) Evidence of movement fusion is found in the concerted drive to promote “diversity” into the corporate sector conducted by a wide alliance of SMOs from the feminist, minority rights, and homosexualist movements. (232) It can also be seen in the US Green Party’s effort to build rainbow coalitions and define itself as a feminist organization. (233) Additionally, a 1999 study showed the labour and environmental movements were increasingly cooperative and adopting one another’s issues. (234) The anti-globalization mobilization had “blue-green” coalitions of (blue-collar) unions and (green) EMOs at the front. (235) Embodied within this admixture is: the rise of eco-feminism; the subliminal omnipresence of the population control agenda; and the surfacing of a lesbian vanguard atop the women’s movement. (236) The “family” member most neglected by Companion is the population control movement. Rootes mentions neither Malthus nor his spawn, the overpopulation crusade: environmentalism’s troubled twin. Companion spares but two references to this old cyclopean movement. In the 1960s population control strategists took up the gender oppression discourse – emphasizing women’s education as a lever to shift birthing decisions – leading to a defence of women’s rights in sharp contrast to earlier more coercive Malthusian practises. (237) The pro-abortion movement is led by the population control movement. (238) Companion tip-toes around this.
A prime example of growing coordination between environmentalism and related movements is the anti-globalization campaign. This initiative is part of environmentalism’s re-positioning within the transforming global polity. In 1995, while the WTO system was coming together, the EMO-dominated movement family was busy drafting international human rights, labour and environmental treaties. Movement strategists feared business would use the WTO to trump these agreements. Movement-controlled UN agencies feared marginalization “because they were advocating the subordination of market considerations to other values and identities”. (239) Thus, the late 1990s witnessed the birth of numerous transnational SMOs focused on “globalization” that vilified “neo-liberalism”. This adaptation was christened the “global justice movement”; a misnomer to some:
“The global justice movement is not yet a movement but a rainbow coalition of diverse groups with more specific foci, such as environmental protection, indigenous rights, and poverty... Only on given occasions (such as international summits) or with respect to given issue areas (such as the construction of huge dams), do these groups join forces and emphasize their unity.” (240)

“Movement” or not, the anti-globalization phenomenon was “the rise of a new actor” which one sympathetic contributor tellingly describes as neither right nor left. (241) The popularity of this new actor was seen in the blossoming of “Attac” coalitions opposing “the globalizing neo-liberal regime” starting with “Attac France” in the mid-1990s and spreading across Europe. “Attac Germany”, founded in 2000, had 12,000 members by 2003. In that year Germany’s two biggest unions (IG Metal and Ver.di with a combined membership of 5 million) joined Attac to capture some of its youthful glow. (242)

The anti-globalization campaign acquired global media visibility through its 1999 anti-WTO demonstration in Seattle. Acquiring visibility required the presence in the demonstration of anarchists like “Black bloc” who use vandalism against “the corporations” as a tactic. (243) (This tendency is strong in Germany where clashes between “militants” and police occur ritually at conferences.) (244) The Seattle demonstration, typical of anti-globalization actions, was superficially violent but actually timorous with disobedience being civil and arrests occurring un-resisted. In spite of this, several contributors to Companion, betraying their slant, describe the Seattle, Quebec City and Genoa protests as “great clashes” where authorities responded with “brutal repression”. (245) Contrary to the deluded ravings of duped anarchists, the anti-globalization campaign is a top-down initiative of a semi-institutionalized social movement whose goal is to strengthen state authority. As another sympathetic contributor put it:
“A global perspective demands that we recognize that there are instances when social movements will form alliances with governments or international agencies as they pursue social change goals, and where movements will seek to enhance state authority vis a vis other actors in the course of advancing their interest in things like human rights and environmental protection.” (246)

Appropriation d’état

To sociomovementologists “appropriation” means “the surreptitious exploitation of the previously aggregated resources of other groups”. (247) The US Communist Party, a pioneering appropriator, infiltrated student groups, peace coalitions and labour unions to usurp their resources and convert them into party “fronts”. (248) When undertaken by large resourceful social movements appropriation produces dramatic results. Researchers of appropriation abandon the a priori assumption social movements are state challengers because appropriation blurs state/movement boundaries. (249) Appropriation must be understood! One contributor writes:
“Institutional appropriation – or the co-optation of social infrastructure refers to the use of an institution’s resources or reputation to serve the purpose of affiliated groups. Activists work with churches and universities to win these institutions over to the cause. Or they may work with governmental or international agencies that share their goals in order to win legitimacy or access to information or other resources. Social movement actors cultivate ties with international treaty bodies, and sometimes these ties produce funding for an action in support of a treaty’s environmental goals.” (250)

Another adds:
“One of the most effective technologies for accomplishing mass mobilization is through the co-optation of social-organization resources. This is done by exploiting existing relationships with organizations that were not formed for explicit movement purposes, but whose memberships include a large number of adherents who can aid in mobilizing their own constituents. In the US, groups that co-opt social-organization resources in this way typically enter into these exchange relationships with religious, occupation, or social service organizations.” (251)

Appropriation’s greatest successes come when SMOs place their people into the state. Getting people into legislatures and bureaucracies enables movements to place their policies on the agenda, aid their passage, and facilitate their enforcement. (252) The two principal ways whereby movements achieve state appropriation are elections and appointments. “Elections” require the movement to create a political party or, more commonly, to quietly install their people as candidates for established parties. “Appointments” range from getting movement actors selected to sit on government commissions addressing specific issues or, better for the movement, getting movement actors embedded into regular government bureaucracies. (253) The objective is for a “social movement organization to capture bureaucracies and run them in favour of its constituency”. (254) Ideally, the movement gets operatives appointed to run state bureaucracies. (255) Both the Carter and Clinton administrations appointed EMO executives to high-level posts. In Britain: “prominent EMO personnel have been recruited to senior policy positions under both Conservative and Labour governments, and some have retraced their paths to senior EMO posts”. (256) In Sweden all major political parties recruit EMO activists. (636) In many countries a revolving door is in place through which EMO activists and civil servants move back and forth between state and movement jobs. Entire branches of the state, not just environment ministries, have been appropriated, helping explain environmentalist defence of states against “the corporations” and other threats to the green agenda. (257)

Churches currently top environmentalism’s hit list for appropriation. Rootes describes church appropriation as “the fastest growing strand of environmentalism in the US” and potentially “the most subversive”. This initiative requires an “eco-theology” of religious teachings re-framed as “critiques of the degradation of the natural environment”, a process facilitated by nature/wilderness long having been vested with religious significance. (258) Appropriation is also aided by churches’ traditional resistance to modernization and role as “safe haven” for certain movements. (259) Appropriating American churches will not win environmentalists much cash but high US rates of religious participation and their extensive infrastructures make American churches valuable human and social-organization resources. These can be harnessed during elections. Churches are no less a prize in many European nations where, although religious participation is lower, state tithing mechanisms bless churches with bountiful manna. (260) Environmentalist appropriation is ideologically dividing churches. (261)

Environmentalist Globalization

After WWII, institutions such as the UN were founded to advance international cooperation. The ensuing formation of agencies and drafting of treaties to deal with issues transcending national boundaries (health, crime, environment) was matched by the chartering of hundreds of transnational SMOs; a significant portion being EMOs. (262) Governing boards of UN agencies and other international institutions became important arenas of movement contest. EMO blending into these institutions led to monumental resource mobilizations for environmentalism. (263)

“The fact that international institutions are charged with addressing global environmental problems means that within these organizations the environmental social movement can find important allies as well as material and symbolic resources. The international officials see the need to build direct links between their agencies and popular groups. The fact that governments have signed international declarations and treaties indicating support for the values movements advance provides both international and legal legitimacy for activists’ claims as well as political leverage. (264)

Global environmentalism arose after 1970, after the consolidation of strong national environmental movements. (265) The first coup was the 1972 Stockholm Conference on the Human Environment where EMOs “expanded their remit to encompass issues of sustainable development”. (266) Twenty years later, at the Rio Earth Summit, every world leader bowed to the movement. The proliferation of international environmental protection regimes then accelerated through ever-closer coordination of EMOs with state-connected NGOs involved in developmental aid. Established EMOs, such as WWF and national bird protection societies, now promote re-framed ecological perspectives synthesizing habitat preservation with the welfare of local human populations. (267)

Asian, African and East European environmentalists depend on West European and American-based EMOs. (268) One new transnational EMO, Earth Action, specializes in starting EMOs in poor countries by supplying them with “action kits” and other resources. Through this effort Earth Action affiliates “derive sustenance from their transnational ties and, are better able to resist repression locally and to acquire the skills necessary to participate effectively in the global arena”. (269) A survey of Earth Action affiliate managers found them estranged from their own governments and bitter about their international marginalization. They blamed the US. (270) A fine example of international environmentalism was a recent campaign against “factoryfarming” in Poland. (271) In 1999 Washington DC-based Animal Welfare Institute (an EMO with extensive organizational resources in the US built up through 25 years of endangered species activism) kicked-off its first European mobilization. AWI undertook a confrontational, direct action offensive to prevent Smithfield Foods from constructing industrial-style hog facilities in Poland. AWI employed local activists and produced a Polish language documentary, “The Trojan Pig”, that proved extremely helpful in galvanizing opposition to Smithfield. (272)

Globalization and environmentalism exhibit other forms of symbiosis. Japanese EMOs acquired access to national officials only after the Japanese government’s hosting of climate change treaty negotiations compelled them to abide UN norms promoting citizen participation. (273) Due to international suasion, South Korea and Taiwan tolerate environmental activism but few other types of popular mobilization. (274) Environmentalism is credited with a role in overthrowing Communist regimes in East Europe where Rootes speculates “green was often adopted as protective camouflage by anti-regime activists”. (275)
Global environmentalism requires frametransformations. Some transnational EMOs in Brazil modified their rhetoric to pay more attention to human rights and social inequalities affecting environmental decision-making. (276) While in the same country: “the anti-dam movement...changed their framing of the issue from peasants’ rights to land to a struggle about the destruction of natural habitat”.  This change was caused by “the rise of the national and international ecology movement and the anti-dam movement’s need for a broader political and financial base”. (277) Everywhere, indigenous rights SMOs are shifting emphasis from cultural to environmental preservation. (278)

Ethnomental Environicity

Intertwining environmentalism is the emergence of new European ethnic movements. Companion’s ethno-nationalism chapter is by an ecological-sociological theorist. She is not the only Companion contributor deploying ecological metaphors to social phenomena; a trend dating to the mid-1990s. Regarding social movements, the ecological-sociological approach de-emphasizes internal aspects of movement organizations. Instead the “ecological perspective emphasizes the selection processes in population growth and change” and applies Darwinian lingo to organization survival. (279) One ambitious eco-sociologist chronicled US environmentalism’s history attempting to show how movement frames and organizational forms evolved as the movement adapted to its surroundings. (280) Eco-sociology uses “ecology” and “environment” as synonyms for what most sociologists call “society”. 

Eco-sociological movement researchers share a peculiar interest in organizational repertoires available to ethnic (racist) movements. (281) Nationalism is described as a natural collective action process whereby ethnic sodalities seek territorial boundaries congruent unto themselves. (282) These researchers seek awareness of “the causal ordering of ethnic heterogeneity”; a quest complicated because “racial boundaries are subject to change.” (283) They argue modernization expands ethnic boundaries into larger units, thus causing conflict. (284) They also blame ethnic strife on fossil fuel consumption and natural resource extraction. (285) The theory in capsule is: “The processes accompanying modernization...exacerbates ethnic/racial and nationalist social movements”. (286)

The demise of the Soviet Union and Yugoslavia was accompanied by a surge of ethnic violence framed in Western Europe as threatening to stability. The Cold War’s end brought new networks of alliances and new networks of enemies as new ethnic subgroups gained salience. (287) Responding to this ethno-nationalist momentum a German-led coalition set up extensive programs in Eastern Europe. (288) Superpowers have a venerable history of mobilizing sub-national groups to destabilize regimes. (289) The ethnic-nationalist movements propagating across Europe, while threatening to some, strengthen key institutions and certain regimes. (290) Ethnic movements spanning international borders until recently framed pejoratively as “irredentist” are being re-framed as “diaspora movements”. (291)

In the West, “the diffusion of nationalist ideology spread by legitimating forces of international organizations seems to fuel an epidemic of proliferating ethnic identities.” (292) Regarding “legitimating forces of international organizations” the professor vaguely elaborates:
“...economic interdependence among states may also foster rising ethnic sub-national movements. Organizations such as the European Union, OPEC, NATO, and other supranational organizations promote interstate migration and decrease reliance of regions within states on the military and economic power of the nation-state. Multistate organizations also provide forums for sub-national organizations. ...proposals for membership of Northern Ireland and Scotland in the European Parliament suggest that increasing economic and political interdependence has encouraged regional sub-nationalism...” (684-5)

The neo-ethno-nationalist surge is grinding away the top and bottom of nation states. Traditional nations are vanishing between the rising saliencies of the supra-nation and the sub-nation. From the top comes Pan-Europeanism. By relinquishing authority to global institutions, governments undermine traditional channels of democratic accountability. (293) Military interdependence and multi-state defence organizations diminish nation state relevance. (294) Ethnic resurgence intensifies as the EU/EC system overtakes activities once controlled by nation states. Integration’s dissolution of barriers to labour mobility and subsequent in-flows of migrant workers increases the blatancy of ethnicity. Economic competition from transnational migrants is creating favourable opportunity structures for a new family of right-wing parties. (295) Pan-ethnic identities of European and Non-European are gaining conspicuousness at the expense of traditional identities such as French or German. Anti-foreigner sentiment, racist political parties, and attacks on Non-Europeans are rising especially in Germany, France and England. (296) Major social movements are zeroing in on the European/Non-European cleavage drawing battle lines over migration rights, the meaning of citizenship, and state benefits for the foreign-born. (297) The success of the new ethnic-nationalist resurgence varies from state to state. A study comparing Germany’s radical right to Italy’s concluded the former’s greater impact was due to the more conducive discursive opportunity structure it faced. (298) Cultish fascistic parties are viewed as “abeyance structures” keeping the home-fire burning. Ethnic-nationalist groups are learning to traffic in new rhetorical frames because research shows parties re-using the symbolic repatoires of Nazism or other old-school Fascisms will be unsuccessful. (299)

Coterminously, European integration is transforming European environmentalism. European EMOs quickly identified the EU/EC system as a cross-territorial, inter-governmental, multi-level treasure trove of opportunities for new coalitions to formulate common positions and overcome their previous dispersion and diversity. (300) From the perspective of European EMOs, continental integration combines: weakened nation states; novel decentralized sub-national polities; and powerful supra-national decision making arenas into a byzantine but exploitable matrix. (301) To lobby new EU/EC and sub-national institutions, a phalanx of EMO coalitions has come together; primarily hailing from northern Europe where the environmental movement is most institutionalized. (302)

Grinding away the nation state’s floor are the integrationist-sponsored, sub-national polities. Social movement researchers predict as integration continues, sub-nationalist movements within member states will become unconstrainable. (303) The immigration issue alone has fundamentally realigned European politics at the regional level. (304) Although the text does not mention them by name, the primary legitimating organs at the forefront of sub-nationalism’s rise are the Committee of the Regions (CoR) and the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of Europe (CLRAE). CoR was established pursuant to the Treaty of the European Union and held its inaugural meeting in 1994 but this was merely a formalization of a 1980s coalescence of sub-national liaison officials in Brussels. CoR must be consulted by the EC regarding transportation, energy, employment and, notably, environmental policies. CoR can voice opinions on any “regional” matter. The subsidiarity principle oft used by defenders of the nation state against supranational bodies is proving a two-edge sword as CoR argues many objectives are better achieved at the regional level. CoR’s influence grows as the importance of regionalism grows in the administration of certain Funds, predominantly and tellingly, related to the environmental policy domain. Structural Funds are dispersed only in consultation with CoR and deal with the environmentally sensitive issues of farming, fishing, land-use and regional underdevelopment. The Cohesion Fund, also within CoR’s jurisdiction, was given a substantial boost in 2006 and now has 200 environmental and transportation projects to oversee. LIFE Funds, the EU/EC’s instruments for administering conservation and eco-engineering programs, are also subject to CoR approval. As these Funds contain billions of euros, they are key arenas of contest for the overlapping environmentalist and sub-nationalist movements. CoR is an openly and avowedly pro-environmentalist assembly that has created four new Pan-European political parties to press the environmentalist/sub-nationalist agenda. CoR’s work is paralleled by CLRAE. Although CLRAE has little legal authority, it is an influential talk-shop regarding local governance and regional planning. Not surprisingly CLRAE’s focus is on promoting sustainable development, increasing local self-government and (through the new European Landscape Convention) the preservation of landscapes. (305)

Environmentalism and sub-nationalism have dark sides. There is a distorted notion the emergence of the sub-nation will lead to a nicer left-lib world. Research suggests the contrary: “Local control would not guarantee that the police would be employed in ways that liberals and critics would like”. New micro-states will more likely be arms of the dominant ethnicity within the regional polity. The Protestant-dominated security apparatus of Northern Ireland is held out as a model. (306) It is noteworthy that the militant Basque separatist movement was for a period fused with the radical environmentalist movement. (307) This is consistent with the long-standing mantra of political ecology: “bio-regionalism”. On the ground, bio-regionalism is identical to ethno-regionalism. There is a well-documented overlap between the New Right and environmentalists with both movements sharing anti-Americanism, anti-metropolitanism and a disdain for industrial capitalism. The New Right forms another radical flank of the movement family. This flank has a fifth column on European campuses preaching socio-biology, human ecology, ethno-botany, environmental-geography and ecological-sociology.


Environmentalism is both a collection of sub-movements (organic farming, alternative energy, wilderness preservation, anti-pollutionism, anti-suburbanism, etc.) and a member of a social movement family (animal rights, population control, occultism, feminist-exclusivism, sub-nationalism, etc.). At the centre of this organizational field is an unexplored, undefined social movement – the  plutocratic/aristocratic/philanthropic/arch-conservativist/neo-platonist/neo-fascist movement. What this central movement lacks in numbers and notoriety it makes up for in wealth and influence. This movement is the conductor facing an orchestra of some hundred thousand SMOs/EMOs/NGOs, etc. This movement’s institutionalization, its integration into the state, is not new. This movement has always been part of the state. In Western Europe, pre-Industrial Revolution, it was the state. This movement is unsatisfied with controlling parts of modern states. They want it all. This is the movement’s challenge.

None dare call this a conspiracy for it is not a conspiracy – it is a social movement. “Conspiracy” implies small cabals secretly engaged in criminal behaviour. Even the core plutocrats heading this movement family number in the hundreds and have never been in the same hall together, let alone around the same table. Furthermore, this core constituency does not exert military-style control over the thousands of SMO executives and deputy ministers who manage the movement family’s structured units. While there are “family” secrets, for the most part its activities are in the public domain. Steven Rockefeller and Prince Charles are not crypto environmentalists. The foundations, EMOs, ministries and agencies running this show are required by law, and do, publish accounts of their operations. While environmentalist and related movement campaigns should be denounced as treasonous frauds, in the main their actions conform to legal conventions of Western society. This phenomenon is a massive, public, legal social movement, NOT a conspiracy.
That this phenomenon is perceived as “new” is testament to its totalitarian sweep. Urbanization-industrialization-modernization has always stimulated opposition from oligarchies with nothing to gain from change; who crave a moment’s repose. Resistance by aristocrats to sprawling urban centres and the republican capitalists holed up therein predates the Industrial Revolution. The fallacy of novelty partially flows from the ambiguousness of “conservative” in the English-speaking world with its entrenched capitalist-republican tradition. Conservatives defend traditions. But capitalism and republicanism lead to: an ever-levelling process of democratization; a revolutionizing metastasis of technological innovation; to the urbanization-industrialization-modernization that real conservatives traditionally oppose. To European aristocrats and New England plutocrats, conserving the status quo means suppressing trade liberalization, suburban sprawl, industrial expansion and technological change. Thus two “conservative” meta-movements struggle for control of the state.



Inwood, Stephen (1998) A History of London: Carroll and Graf Publishers Inc.; New York.
McGowan, Lee; Phinnemore, David, (2006) A Dictionary of the European Union: Routledge, London.
Snow, David; Soule, Sarah; Kriesi, Hanspeter (eds.) (2004, 2007) The Blackwell Companion to Social Movements: Blackwell Publishing, Malden, MA.
The Europa World Year Book 2008, Volume 1, (2008) Routledge, London.
United States Census Bureau (2008) Statistical Abstract of the United States of America (127th Edition), Washington DC.



  1. Snow, David; Soule, Sarah; Kriesi, Hanspeter (eds.) (2004, 2007) The Blackwell Companion to Social Movements: Blackwell Publishing, Malden, MA. p.5
  2. Ibid p. 131
  3. Ibid p. 635
  4. Ibid p. 27
  5. Ibid p. 217
  6. Ibid p. 214
  7. Ibid pages 243 & 247 & 259
  8. Ibid p. 363
  9. Ibid p. 247
  10. Ibid p. 95
  11. Ibid pages 475 & 98
  12. Ibid p. 116
  13. Ibid p. 593
  14. Ibid p. 92
  15. Ibid pages 273 & 513
  16. Ibid p. 142-3
  17. Ibid p. 117
  18. Ibid p. 118
  19. Ibid p. 134
  20. Ibid p. 138
  21. Ibid p. 140
  22. Ibid p. 138-9
  23. Ibid p. 142
  24. Ibid p. 137
  25. Ibid p. 139
  26. Ibid p. 142-3
  27. Ibid p. 175
  28. Ibid p. 620
  29. Ibid p. 117
  30. Ibid p. 122
  31. Ibid p. 122
  32. Ibid p. 123
  33. United States Census Bureau (2008) Statistical Abstract of the United States of America (127th Edition), Washington DC; p. 469.  
  34. Please see the websites of the following foundations (which can be accessed from links section of,,,, and
  35. Snow et al p. 119
  36. Ibid p. 128-9
  37. Ibid p. 264
  38. Ibid p. 141
  39. Ibid p. 175
  40. Ibid p. 608
  41. Ibid p. 608
  42. Ibid p. 608
  43. Ibid p. 634
  44. Ibid p. 634
  45. Ibid p. 608
  46. Ibid p. 633-4
  47. Ibid p. 627
  48. Ibid p. 625
  49. Ibid p. 626-7
  50. Ibid p. 626
  51. Ibid p. 608
  52. Ibid p. 626
  53. Ibid p. 626
  54. Ibid p. 608-9
  55. Ibid p. 626
  56. Ibid p. 627
  57. Ibid p. 626-7
  58. Ibid p. 628
  59. Ibid p. 628
  60. Ibid p. 141
  61. Ibid p. 124
  62. Ibid p. 624
  63. Ibid p. 182-3
  64. Ibid p. 370
  65. Ibid p. 323-4
  66. Ibid p. 141-2
  67. Ibid p. 50
  68. Ibid p. 492-4
  69. Ibid p. 418
  70. Ibid p. 157
  71. Ibid p. 157
  72. Ibid p. 597
  73. Ibid p. 157
  74. Ibid pages 608 & 616
  75. Ibid p. 613
  76. Ibid p. 612
  77. Ibid p. 612
  78. Ibid p. 628
  79. Ibid p. 651
  80. Ibid p. 38
  81. Ibid p. 614-5
  82. Ibid p. 613
  83. Ibid p. 614
  84. Ibid p. 614
  85. Ibid p. 541
  86. Ibid p. 166
  87. Ibid p. 613
  88. Ibid p. 612-3
  89. Ibid p. 613
  90. Ibid p. 614-5
  91. Ibid p. 627
  92. Ibid p. 613
  94. Inwood, Stephen (1998) A History of London: Carroll and Graf Publishers Inc.; New York. p. 838.  Note: Inwood, who is not suspicious of the Great Smog hoax, estimates the death toll at 1,600. This corresponds to the inquiry but as such is a dubious estimate made 2 years after the event and founded on an alleged blip in mortality rates in a city of over 7 million occurring during an abnormally cold winter. The “smog” fatalities include many old people dying of coronary disease.
  95. Snow et. al. p 629
  96. Ibid p. 618
  97. Ibid p. 618-9
  98. Ibid p. 633
  99. Ibid p. 634
  100. Ibid pages 633 and 615
  101. Ibid p. 211
  102. Ibid p. 32
  103. Ibid p. 31
  104. Ibid p. 248
  105. Ibid p. 251
  106. Ibid p. 258
  107. Ibid p. 370
  108. Ibid p. 31
  109. Ibid p. 299
  110. Ibid p. 255
  111. Ibid p. 243
  112. Ibid p. 201
  113. Ibid p. 236
  114. Ibid p. 186
  115. Ibid p. 25-6
  116. Ibid p. 99
  117. Ibid p. 243
  118. Ibid p. 86
  119. Ibid p. 140
  120. Ibid p. 201
  121. Ibid p. 250
  122. Ibid p. 259
  123. Ibid p. 254
  124. Ibid pages 179 & 253
  125. Ibid p. 187
  126. Ibid p. 230
  127. Ibid p. 258
  128. Ibid p. 256
  129. Ibid p. 256
  130. Ibid p. 257
  131. Ibid p. 257
  132. Ibid p. 76
  133. Ibid p. 645
  134. Ibid p. 645
  135. Ibid p. 649
  136. Ibid p. 620 & 649
  137. Ibid p. 649
  138. Ibid p. 651
  139. Ibid p. 652
  140. Ibid p. 652
  141. Ibid p. 76
  142. Ibid p. 654
  143. Ibid p. 654
  144. Ibid p. 252
  145. Ibid p. 76
  146. Ibid p. 76-7
  147. Ibid p. 159
  148. Ibid p. 659
  149. Ibid p. 659-60
  150. Ibid pages 614 & 121-2
  151. Ibid p. 653
  152. Ibid p. 344
  153. Ibid p. 654
  154. Ibid p. 614
  155. Ibid p. 624
  156. Ibid p. 83
  157. Ibid p. 298
  158. Ibid p. 403
  159. Ibid p. 84
  160. Ibid p. 27-8
  161. Ibid p. 83
  162. Ibid p. 471
  163. Ibid p. 234
  164. Ibid p. 621
  165. Ibid p. 624
  166. Ibid p. 613
  167. Ibid p. 609
  168. Ibid p. 634
  169. Ibid p. 465
  170. Ibid p. 611
  171. Ibid p. 121
  172. Ibid p. 623
  173. Ibid p. 122
  174. Ibid p. 121-2
  175. Ibid p. 635
  176. Ibid p. 609
  177. Ibid p. 628-9
  178. Ibid p. 212
  179. Ibid p. 633
  180. Ibid p. 610
  181. Ibid p. 620
  182. Ibid p. 620-1
  183. Ibid p. 621
  184. Ibid p. 235
  185. Ibid p. 236
  186. Ibid p. 140
  187. Ibid pages 221 & 224
  188. Ibid p. 231
  189. Ibid p. 230
  190. Ibid p. 611
  191. Ibid p. 204
  192. Ibid p. 205
  193. Ibid p. 204
  194. Ibid p. 204-5
  195. Ibid p. 205
  196. Ibid p. 630
  197. Ibid p. 617
  198. Ibid p. 124
  199. Ibid p. 545-6
  200. Ibid p. 617
  201. Ibid p. 629
  202. Ibid p. 630
  203. Ibid pages 395 & 4 & 7
  204. Ibid p. 629
  205. Ibid p. 615; see also (history)
  206. Ibid p 122
  207. Ibid p. 629 see also
  208. Ibid p. 120
  209. Ibid p. 120
  210. Ibid p. 615-6
  211. Ibid p. 615
  212. Ibid p. 619
  213. Ibid p. 619
  214. Ibid p. 204
  215. Ibid p. 617
  216. Ibid p. 611
  217. Ibid p. 630
  218. Ibid p. 611
  219. Ibid p. 143
  220. Ibid p. 609
  221. Ibid p. 623
  222. Ibid p. 208
  223. Ibid pages 619 & 624
  224. Ibid p. 624
  225. Ibid p. 209
  226. Ibid p. 624
  227. The Europa World Year Book 2008, Volume 1, (2008) Routledge, London; pages 60-2 see also
  228. Europa
  230. Europa p. 421
  231. Snow et al pages 157 & 207 & 545-6
  232. Ibid p. 543
  233. Ibid p. 538
  234. Ibid p. 543
  235. Ibid p. 167
  236. Ibid p. 442
  237. Ibid p. 586
  238. Ibid p. 179
  239. Ibid p. 319
  240. Ibid p. 207
  241. Ibid pages 202 & 229
  242. Ibid p. 208
  243. Ibid p. 253
  244. Ibid p. 234
  245. Ibid pages 540 & 221-2 & 33 & 229
  246. Ibid p. 329
  247. Ibid p. 134
  248. Ibid p. 134
  249. Ibid p. 315
  250. Ibid p. 326
  251. Ibid p. 141-2
  252. Ibid p. 467-8
  253. Ibid p. 467-8
  254. Ibid p. 467-8
  255. Ibid p. 467-8
  256. Ibid p. 635
  257. Ibid p. 316 & 635-6
  258. Ibid p. 106
  259. Ibid p. 616 & 700-1 & 706
  260. Ibid p. 123
  261. Ibid p. 702
  262. Ibid pages 632 & 311
  263. Ibid p. 311
  264. Ibid p. 314
  265. Ibid p. 320
  266. Ibid p. 616
  267. Ibid p. 616-7
  268. Ibid p. 631
  269. Ibid p. 632
  270. Ibid p. 314
  271. Ibid p. 116-7
  272. Ibid p. 130
  273. Ibid p. 325
  274. Ibid p. 631
  275. Ibid p. 630
  276. Ibid p. 326-7
  277. Ibid p. 392
  278. Ibid p. 321
  279. Ibid p. 164
  280. Ibid p. 164
  281. Ibid p. 164
  282. Ibid p. 672
  283. Ibid p. 687
  284. Ibid p. 671
  285. Ibid p. 671
  286. Ibid p. 687
  287. Ibid p. 684
  288. Ibid pages 39 & 686
  289. Ibid p. 685
  290. Ibid p. 687
  291. Ibid p. 683
  292. Ibid p. 687
  293. Ibid p. 314
  294. Ibid p. 686
  295. Ibid p. 685
  296. Ibid p. 685
  297. Ibid p. 685
  298. Ibid p. 403
  299. Ibid p. 369
  300. Ibid p. 85
  301. Ibid p. 316
  302. Ibid p. 622
  303. Ibid p. 683
  304. Ibid p. 685
  305. McGowan, Lee; Phinnemore, David, (2006) A Dictionary of the European Union: Routledge, London: pages 65-6 & 99 & 399-401 & 57-8 & 301-2 See also The Europa World Year Book 2007, Volume 1, (2007) Routledge, London: pages 247 & 226. See also and
  306. Snow et al p. 223
  307. Ibid p. 621










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