The US environmental movement of the 1960s and 1970s: Building frameworks of sustainability

Erik W. Johnson, Pierce Greenberg

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

2 Scopus citations


This chapter focuses on the groundwork laid during this emergent phase of a new national environmental movement. The late 1960s and 1970s environ mental movement changed cultural understandings about the interplay between human and biophysical systems. Ecological ways of thinking had been developing for many decades in the sciences, but it was the environmental movement that brought ecological education to the wider public and made ecological issues prominent on governmental, business, and other institutional agendas. The chapter begins with the development of, and connections between, the conservation and "new ecology" wings of the US environmental movement. It discusses some of the key figures of the US environmental movement in the 1960s and 1970s who were influential in pushing ecological systems thinking to the forefront of the environmental agenda. The leading preservationist organization of the period, the Sierra Club, focused narrowly on preserving large tracks of "untouched" landscape in the Sierra Nevada mountains east of San Francisco.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationRoutledge Handbook of the History of Sustainability
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9781134866489
ISBN (Print)9781138685796
StatePublished - Jan 1 2017
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Economics, Econometrics and Finance(all)
  • Business, Management and Accounting(all)


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