Ties with Business

More controversial even than ties with government are relationships with business. Doyle (2000 201) says that as the role of the national state has weakened environmental groups have directed greater attention to business, whether as a target of protest or lobbying or as a potential partner. At minimum, the 1990s saw the development of a range of new relationships with business groups whereas previously EMOs dealt with business via the state, concentrating on policy and legislation to constrain...

Green strategy

Strom's (1990) analysis of parties as rational actors defines them as pursuing three goals vote-seeking, office-seeking and policy-seeking. Green parties, however, do not wholly conform to this model. For greens a balance has to be sought between the three goals outlined by Strom and a fourth goal which might be called ideological representation.24 Like other radical forces in the past, the greens seek to balance their gains inside the political system with maintaining a critique of its limits....

Green party programmes

The similarity of green policies on these three areas can be illustrated through a comparison of their programmes.2 The summary below is based on analysis of programmes from the German Greens in 1983, 1994 and 1998, the French Greens in 1989, and 1997, and recent drafts of the British Greens' ever-evolving meta-programme, known as the Manifesto for a Sustainable Society. The examination of party programmes3 is essential to understanding the ideology of a political party, but, of course, it...

The future of the green movement

The most relevant questions in assessing the likely future of the green movement seem to be the following The increase in transnational activism, particularly linking green movements in the north with radical environmentalism in the south. The changing environmental debate and new opportunities for the greens Strategic divisions within the green movement Conclusion the future of the green movement 213 The increase in transnational activism There are good arguments that it might be better to...

Networks of interaction

The third characteristic of social movements is that they are characterised by loose networks of interaction because they usually contain multiple groups that may not be linked by formal ties and may not be formally organised at all.2 The membership of social movements is defined by the fact that its adherents share an identity and take action together, not by whether they carry a membership card. However, this does not mean that formal organisations cannot be part of a social movement. In the...

The arguments of local environmental groups depend on a socially constructed conception of the interests of the local

Local environmental groups must argue that they have the best interests of their community at heart. In doing so, they tend to operate with a taken for granted conception of what that community is. As the evidence below will show the conceptions of community appealed to can vary significantly and this affects the style of commitment and the forms of action and organisation adopted by local groups. Local environmental groups have a tendency to see their own concerns as universal and believe that...

A transnational movement

The development of the internet has been important in the rapid globalisation of these networks. The net speeds up the distribution of information that was expensive to distribute for groups with minimal time (Anon. 1999) and money and allows activists to be part of the same events in real time. The 18 June 1999 protests against the effects of economic globalisation were the first major example of this. Protests were organised in 43 countries and many countries had protests in several places....

Debates within social movement theory

Social movement theory is concerned with much more than the question of how to define a social movement. This is not the place for a full review of the theoretical debates within this field, however, it is important to explain two of the traditions that are drawn upon in the rest of this book. The first is the school of 'new social movement' theory developed mainly by European theorists such as Alain Touraine (1981 1985 2000) and Alberto Melucci (1989 1996). They argue that new kinds of social...

The violencenonviolence debate

The debate over non-violence is a perennial source of disagreement in EDA groups and widely misunderstood by observers, particularly in the media. The central areas of disagreement are over harm to people there is relatively little disagreement about damaging property or sabotage. This distinguishes EDA groups from Greenpeace and many in the peace movement, who, like Gandhi, regard sabotage as violent and unacceptable Scarce 1990 . The early adoption of EDA by Australian greens and the overlap...

Excluding those who break with the green framework

When some eco-activists have given absolute priority to ecology at the expense of equality and democracy they have been regarded as extremists both inside the green movement and by outside observers, and often have been unable to work with other greens. One of the best-known instances of this was the dispute in US Earth First over whether the movement was concerned with wilderness preservation to the exclusion of social justice and democracy. The infamous column in the Earth First journal, in...

Membership growth

The largest and most rapid growth in membership has been for campaigning groups like BUND in Germany, Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth. In Britain, membership of FOE rose by 730 between 1985 and 1993. Doherty and Rawcliffe, 1995 243 . In the Netherlands the number of Greenpeace contributors rose from 70,000 in 1985 to 830,000 in 1989 van der Heijden, Koopmans and Giugni 1992 18 . Conservation groups and animal welfare groups such as WWF also experienced significant membership growth, but at...

Conclusion

EMOs are very diverse and only some are green, and even then, when tested against the ideal type outlined in Chapter One, the green EMOs are only partly green. Those that retain a collective identity compatible with the three core green commitments and with green practices have the strongest status as greens. Here we might include Friends of the Earth International as the principal example. In some respects these groups, along with some conservation groups such as ACF, have developed a stronger...

Green Movement Introduction

This book is concerned not with environmental movements in general, so much as with green movements. In popular usage, the environmental movement is a broad and loose term, which can refer to climates of opinion, to formally organised groups or to loose networks of protesters Rootes 1997a 319 . So, while the environmental movement and the green movement are often used as synonyms, in this book the green movement is defined more narrowly as those western environmentalists who believe that...

France

Although the French greens had fought electoral contests throughout the 1970s they did not form a national party until 1984. The political character of the ecology movement was very varied regionally, with supporters of a more purely ecological politics predominant in Alsace, leftists in Paris and Normandy, and regionalists in Brittany. One of the few points of agreement was that the greens' great strength was in their roots in particular localities, often due to involvement in local...

Ecological direct action groups

After a week of rumours the raid came with a few hours warning. Our roving security team spotted a two-mile long column of cars, trucks and buses entering a hangar at Minneapolis-St Paul International Airport, one mile south of the site. Our whistles blew as Ryder trucks pulled up in front of each house, disgorging masked, black-clad police wielding rifles and battering rams. It was immediately apparent the authorities knew where each and every barricaded site and lock-down was, despite some...

An ideal type

The definition of the green movement as a social movement is an ideal type that can be used to investigate a broad range of environmental groups. As used by Max Weber Gerth and Mills 1991 the concept of an ideal type was intended as a way of defining characteristics that would help empirical investigation. An ideal type is therefore a theoretical construction, not in itself a description of reality. Ideal in this sense means an idea, rather than superior, or the best. Its usefulness depends on...

Is institutionalisation inevitable and irreversible

The evidence above suggests that EMOs have some choices about how they organise and are not subject to inevitable institutionalisation, but one argument against this is that the groups that fail to institutionalise are likely to fail as organisations and become weaker. The dramatic fall in supporters for Greenpeace USA in the 1990s might seem to confirm this. Support fell from 2.3 million in 1990 to 350,000 in 1998 and might be attributed to its failure to pursue the kind of external...

Green leftism or ecocentrism

Dobson 2000 and Eckersley 1992 argue that ecology provides the base on which the green superstructure of egalitarianism and democracy can rest. Robyn Eckersley defines ecocentrism as 'a picture of reality in which there are no absolutely discrete entities and no absolute dividing lines between the living and the nonliving, the animate and the inanimate, or the human and the nonhuman' 1992 49 whereas anthropocentrism, the basis of all other ideologies, views humans as having superior interests...

Collective identity

Before people can act together they must have a certain degree of solidarity. In particular they should be able to assess the world in terms of 'them' and 'us'. Activists will have stronger solidarity when they share values that provide meaning and justification for their actions. Yet, a shared identity is based on more than simply these shared 'frames' shared culture, practices and traditions also shape a movement's identity and these evolve and change over time. In the case of the green...

Britain

Before 1991 there had been very little EDA in Britain, in contrast with the USA and Australia. There had been small and brief protest actions against nuclear power in the 1970s and 1980s and FOE and Greenpeace had also carried out media-oriented illegal protests, such as the mass return of glass bottles to the doorsteps of the drinks company Schweppes which launched FOE Lamb 1996 38 , and Greenpeace actions against the Orkney Seal Cull and the sea dumping of British nuclear waste but there was...

Linking ideology and action

The version of green ideology that has been outlined above is essentially a framework. As analysed above, the green framework provides no answers on the question of how to decide on which commitment has priority in cases of conflict the answers to such dilemmas are worked out by activists in specific contexts. The content of green ideology develops in relation to this kind of ideological work and in the collective action of green movements. As Bevir says Ideologies are not fixed entities that...

Ecological direct action in the USA Australia and Britain

In the USA ecological direct action is more synonymous with Earth First than in Australia and Britain. Earth First was founded in the USA in April 1980 by five environmentalists disillusioned by their experiences with the major environmental organisations. They viewed the compromises of the pressure groups as inadequate in the face of the erosion of wilderness and threats to biodiversity This was brought to a head after the Forest Service's second Roadless Area Review and Evaluation RARE II in...

A comparative model

Four factors seem to be consistently relevant to explanations of how the green movement developed in Germany and France. These are the institutional characteristics of the political system the strategic choices made by the new EMOs the nature of the major parties of the Left and the nature of the alternative milieu. These factors also explain many of the differences between green movements in different countries. Moreover, these factors interact and cannot be easily separated. For instance, the...

Australia

Although it has had less attention than Earth First in the USA. EDA on environmental issues began at least as early and possibly earlier in Australia. From 1979 to 1983 direct action helped the environmental movement to achieve success in three important conflicts over forest issues. The first at Terania Creek in northern New South Wales covered only a small area, but provided a model for the two more significant campaigns that followed, at Daintree in Queensland and the Franklin Dam in...