Since the emergence of the environmental movement, America today is more ecologically friendly compared to thirty years ago. At the same time, the average consumption in today's society is rapidly increasing. Luckily, environmentalism has become a highly accepted movement among the public. However, the advocacy of environmentalism has become a polarized movement. Over the years society has made the argument that federal agencies are seen as environmental destroyers, whereas the grassroots and local organizations are viewed as saviors of the movement. In reality, this polarization of environmentalism has resulted in the halt of activism in the environmental movement. Society needs to evolve the environmental movement and create a balance between government activism and the local/grassroots group’s activism. Attention should be focused on diversifying the movement and gaining support from all levels of government.
Environmentalism is a segregated movement. According to Michael Shellenberger and Ted Nordhaus, the authors of “The Death of Environmentalism,” environmentalist have created a special interest group in which they perpetuate the wrong picture of the environment. According to these men, poverty, war, labor, campaign finance reform and taxes should be categorized under the environmental movement, however due to the predefined image environmentalist have created we do not consider those issues as environmental issues(Shellenberger, and Nordhaus). Shellenberger and Nordhaus believe in using government power to enforce new regulations on uncommon environmental issues in order to resolve the major environmental issues we face today like global warming and pollution. One solution proposed by Shellenberger, and Nordhaus is to think differently about the problem, they claim if a tax credit is incorporated with a certain issue, like emissions, than the likelihood of witnessing a change will increase.
However, on the opposite side of the spectrum, many oppose government and see the local/ grassroots organizations as the saviors of the environmental movement. According to Dowie he expresses the environmental movement as being too professionalized and has become disconnected geographically (Dowie). He states that "while nationals are focused on the gradual reduction of pollution, grassroots organizations are seeking to eliminate it altogether"(Dowie), claiming that grassroots organizations stubbornly refuse to surrender or compromise. These groups focus solely on educating their communities and protecting their local environment by taking any radical action deemed necessary.
Both of these organizations claim to have the same goal. However, each of these groups take opposite approaches to the same issues. Instead of disputing which one is better suited or more equipped to save our environment, we should attempt to evolve from this polarization. Evolve from radical tactics utilized by the grassroots organizations and isolation with government, into a...