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Environmental movement of the 1970s

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Greyson Cantrell

on 24 April 2014

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Transcript of Environmental movement of the 1970s

Wise Use and Conservatives
The Wise Use movement was a coalition of people who argued against environmentalists.
Used the 5th amendment ("now shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation") to argue against the implementation of multiple government policies in which private property regulations were unconstitutional land "takings"
Members included anti-environmentalists, pro-development, or fear of future economic projects.
Environmental movement of the 1970s
Important Legislation
During the 1970s, primary responsibility for cleaning up the environment fell to the federal government.
NEPA signed into law in 1970-established Environmental Protection Agency and council to monitor national air and water quality
Clean Water Act and Clean Air Act extension of 1970 to set national standards for environmental quality
Superfund Act of 1980 to establish response and compensation to specific environmental disasters such as Love Canal
Green Movement Actions
In response to the Lake Eerie Fire in which debris in the lake spontaneously combusted, Dr Seuss writes The Lorax to raise environmental awareness.
The book Silent Spring focuses on the chemical DDT and insecticides which directly affected birds, specifically the bald eagle. The bald eagle being a national symbol of America was placed on the list of endangered species and greatly called America to action.
Green Movement Causes
People became environmentally aware around 1965-1970 and became a priority in many countries.
a distrust in business and industry as they were the main sources of pollution.
awareness of Hydrogen bomb testing on Bikini Atoll.
The Origins of the Modern Environmental Movement
January 1st, 1970 (appropriately) - Congress passed the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), requiring every federal agency to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for any legislation, largely due to the public outcry over the Santa Barbara oil in 1969.
In recognition of the growing media attention given to the approaching Earth Day, President Richard Nixon stressed the importance of environmental issues in his State of the Union Address.
The first Earth Day would then take form in April of 1970 where protests would erupt against environmental ignorance.
Anti-environmentalism becomes prominent as people began to realize the "uselessness" of environmentalists which they argued cost jobs, threatened land, and cared more about about plants and animals than people.
Conservative "think tanks" cast doubts on ozone and green house theories.
Corporations often threatened civilian petitions with law suits known as
"SLAPP" (Strategic lawsuits against Public Participation).
James G. Watt
Publicly advocated the idea that protecting natural resources was unimportant in light of the imminent return of Jesus Christ
Watt represented the religious left of the 1970s during his cabinet membership in the early 1980s, remaining very strict to the Bible.
Top 5 most influential events and figures
NEPA and the EPA
Rachel Carson and her book Silent Spring 1962
William D. Ruckelshaus, EPA director
Love Canal at Niagara
Earth Day
"How much power does it take to destroy the environment? One Watt."
The EPA's logo
Full transcript