American Environmentalism: Values, Tactics, Priorities

By Joseph M. Petulla | Go to book overview

9
The Public Good

IN early 1977 the following editorial appeared in the Wall Street Journal:

Heroes of the Movement

Jack B. Weinstein, a federal district judge in Brooklyn, decided last week that there hasn't been enough environmental paperwork--only 4,043 pages--on the sale of federal oil and gas leases off New Jersey last August. So he voided the $1.1 billion deal.

A few days before, Interior Secretary Cecil Andrus, an Idaho environmentalist, canceled the sale, scheduled for tomorrow, of oil and gas leases in the lower Cook Inlet of Alaska. He plans an environmental and geological "review" of this and five other lease sales scheduled by the previous administration.

If we go back a little further, there is the injunction granted against completion of a $116 million TVA hydroelectric project on the Little Tennessee River by a federal judge in Cincinnati on grounds that it threatened a little fish called the Tennessee snail darter.

And before that there was the $2 billion Seabrook nuclear power project in New Hampshire, first announced by the government and then held up by an EPA man in Boston over some implied threat to clam larvae, and still pending in Washington.

Then there was the proposed $700 million Dickey-Lincoln hydroelectric project on Maine's Upper St. John River, stalled by a controversy over environmentalist claims that it would threaten the Furbish lousewort. And before that, Appalachian Power's proposed New River hydroelectric project in Virginia and North Carolina, was scotched when the U.S. declared the river a "wilderness" area.

Then there are those oil shale projects in Utah and Colorado. They may not have panned out economically, but it will be sometime before

-177-

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American Environmentalism: Values, Tactics, Priorities
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page v
  • Contents vii
  • Preface ix
  • PART I - PROBLEM AND BACKGROUND 1
  • 1 - Environmental Values 3
  • 2 - Traditions of Conservation 24
  • PART II 41
  • 3 43
  • 4 - Enemies of Disruption 60
  • 5 - Environmental Economists 75
  • PART III - CRITICAL ISSUES 95
  • 6 - Varieties of Environmental Argument 97
  • 7 - Growth and Decay 119
  • 8 - Risk and Conservation 141
  • PART IV - EMERGING PRIORITIES 175
  • 9 - The Public Good 177
  • 10 - Environmental Ethics 204
  • Epilogue Sincerity and Authenticity 232
  • Index 235
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