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International Organizations and Environmental Protection - Conservation and Globalization in the Twentieth Century

International Organisations and Environmental Protection

International Organisations and Environmental Protection


Pollution, resource depletion, habitat management, and climate change are all issues that necessarily transcend national boundaries. Accordingly, they and other environmental concerns have been a particular focus for international organizations from before the First World War to the present day. This volume is the first to comprehensively explore the environmental activities of professional communities, NGOs, regional bodies, the United Nations, and other international organizations during the twentieth century. It follows their efforts to shape debates about environmental degradation, develop binding intergovernmental commitments, and—following the seminal 1972 Conference on the Human Environment—implement and enforce actual international policies.

Wolfram Kaiser is Professor of European Studies at the University of Portsmouth and Visiting Professor at the College of Europe in Bruges. His recent publications include Writing the Rules for Europe: Experts, Cartels, and International Organizations (2014, with J. Schot).

Jan-Henrik Meyer is Associate Professor and Principal Investigator at the University of Copenhagen for the research project “History of Nuclear Energy and Society” (HoNESt). He has been an Associate Professor at NTNU Trondheim, a Rachel Carson Fellow at LMU Munich and a Marie Curie Fellow at the University of Portsmouth.


“This fascinating book is one of those rare collections that have a shared and unified purpose. Collectively, the authors cover a diverse set of topics, draw on myriad original sources (including interviews as well as archival research), tell interesting and new stories, and make a variety of novel arguments.” · Bob H. Reinhardt, Executive Director, Willamette Heritage Center

“This book is exceptionally helpful for understanding the interplay between emerging environmental concerns and international politics during the last century. It illuminates the crucial role played by international organisations in developing environmental policies, and in particular it traces the political resolve and intellectual effort behind the concept of sustainable development.” · Sara Lorenzini, University of Trento



Introduction: International Organizations and Environmental Protection in the Global Twentieth Century
Wolfram Kaiser and Jan-Henrik Meyer

Chapter 1. From Nature to Environment: International Organisations and Environmental Protection before Stockholm
Jan-Henrik Meyer

Chapter 2. Environmental Problem-solvers? Scientists and the Stockholm Conference
Enora Javaudin

Chapter 3. Developing World Environmental Cooperation: The Founex Seminar and the Stockholm Conference
Michael W. Manulak

Chapter 4. Only One Earth: The Holy See and Ecology
Luigi Piccioni

Chapter 5. Sometimes it’s the Economy, Stupid! International Organizations, Steel and the Environment
Wolfram Kaiser

Chapter 6. Making the Polluter Pay: How the European Communities Established Environmental Protection
Jan-Henrik Meyer

Chapter 7. (Re-) Thinking Environment and Economy: The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development and Sustainable Development
Iris Borowy

Chapter 8. Towards ‘Sustainable’ Development: The United Nations, INGOs, and the Crafting of the World Conservation Strategy
Stephen Macekura

Chapter 9. Protecting the Southern Ocean Ecosystem: The Environmental Protection Agenda of Antarctic Diplomacy and Science
Alessandro Antonello

Chapter 10.
Controlling the Agenda: Science, Policy and the Making of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
David G. Hirst

Conclusion: Setting Agendas, Building Institutions, and Shaping Binding International Commitments
Wolfram Kaiser and Jan-Henrik Meyer


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