History of the Environmental Movement. Earliest Accounts of Environmental Concerns. Air and water pollution was not a much of a concern, though places like the Roman Empire were known to have sewage in the streets.
Ben Franklin began noting water pollution issues and pushed for a solution.
A correlation between population and resources was made and brought to light that as one increases, the other decreases.
The use of more coal led to more air pollution.
The impact of water born diseases became a big concern as well as working conditions in factories and industry.
A push was also made to start preserving wilderness areas. Teddy Roosevelt & Gifford Pinchot suggested forests be used wisely.
The Sierra Club formed during this time.
Impacts of the burning of chemicals and processing of synthetic materials is publicized.
Air pollution is seen as a problem. In 1957, increased levels of CO2 was documented and was a concern.
EPA is established and major environmental laws are passed such as the Clean Air Act & Clean Water Act.
Catalytic converters are put on cars.
The effects of toxic dumps comes to light after the Love Canal incident. (1978)
Nuclear power is questioned after a minor accident at Three Mile Island. (1979)
First major energy crisis over supply of oil. (1973)
1980’s Major Disasters:
Ozone depletion taken seriously in 1987.
Global Climate change becomes more of a concern.
Deemed more important due to rise of fossil fuel costs.
Automotive companies spending more money to develop gas saving cars.
More efforts being made to develop solar, wind, biofuel, and hydrogen fuels.
Wind power is the fastest growing energy source.