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Transcendentalism as a formal movement diminished during the latter half of the 19 th century, but it had a far-reaching influence on the way society perceived itself relative to the environment. Perhaps no one is more responsible for translating its aspirations into environmental public policy than John Muir (1838-1914), a Scottish-born immigrant who was heavily influenced by Emerson’s writings (it is said that the young Muir carried with him a copy of Nature from Scotland). The two first met in 1871 during a camping trip to the Sierra Mountains of California. Upon learning of Emerson’s planned departure, Muir wrote to him on May 8, 1871 hoping to convince him to stay longer, “I invite you join me in a months worship with Nature in the high temples of the great Sierra Crown beyond our holy Yosemite. It will cost you nothing save the time&very little of that for you will be mostly in Eternity” ( Chou, 2003 ).

Muir was a naturalist, author, organizer (founder of the Sierra Club), and as it turns out a remarkably effective political activist and lobbyist. His association with Theodore Roosevelt (1858-1919, 26 th president of the United States), began with a 1903 campaign visit by Roosevelt to California, where he specifically sought out Muir, whose reputation was by then well known, as a guide to the Yosemite area (see Figure Roosevelt and Muir ).

John Muir and Theodore Roosevelt in Yosemite
Roosevelt and Muir Theodore Roosevelt and John Muir at Yosemite National Park in 1903.

It was one of Muir’s special talents that he could bridge across their rather different views on the environment (he a strict preservationist, Roosevelt a practical outdoorsman). By all accounts they had frank but cordial exchanges; for example, upon viewing the giant Sequoias, Muir remarked to Roosevelt, “God has cared for these trees…but he cannot save them from fools – only Uncle Sam can do that.” Roosevelt was so taken with his companion that he insisted they avoid political crowds and camp together overnight in the mountains.

The subsequent legacy of the Roosevelt administration in the name of conservation, even by today’s standards, was significant. Known as the “conservation president,” Roosevelt was responsible for 225 million acres of land added to the U.S. Forest Service, and the creation of 50 wildlife refuges and 150 national forests representing, in total, 11 percent of the total land area of the 48 contiguous states.

The role of industry

Today the behavior of industry toward the environment is often portrayed as either indifferent or hostile, whether true or not, and it was no different during the formative period of American conservation. The industries of the day – agriculture, timber, and mining – enabled by the major transportation sector – railroads and steamboats – had little incentive to manage their emissions to the environment responsibly, or to use natural resources wisely. Regulations were few, the science underpinning environmental impacts was nascent, the commons itself was viewed as essentially infinite, and however misguided, exploitation of resources and the generation of a certain amount of waste was seen as a necessary byproduct of expansion, job creation, and social well-being. And yet, as human-created organizations go, industries are extraordinarily sensitive to economic conditions. If the sustainability paradigm is to be believed, then economic viability is of paramount concern and the engagement of industrial forces must of necessity be part of its enactment. These are the engines that provide employment, and that control large quantities of capital for investment. Further, viewed from the life cycle perspective of the flow of materials (refer to Module Life Cycle Assessment ), products that turn raw materials into mostly waste (defined here as a quantity of material that no one values, as opposed to salable products) are simply inefficient and reduce profitability.

Questions & Answers

where we get a research paper on Nano chemistry....?
Maira Reply
nanopartical of organic/inorganic / physical chemistry , pdf / thesis / review
what are the products of Nano chemistry?
Maira Reply
There are lots of products of nano chemistry... Like nano coatings.....carbon fiber.. And lots of others..
Even nanotechnology is pretty much all about chemistry... Its the chemistry on quantum or atomic level
no nanotechnology is also a part of physics and maths it requires angle formulas and some pressure regarding concepts
Preparation and Applications of Nanomaterial for Drug Delivery
Hafiz Reply
Application of nanotechnology in medicine
what is variations in raman spectra for nanomaterials
Jyoti Reply
ya I also want to know the raman spectra
I only see partial conversation and what's the question here!
Crow Reply
what about nanotechnology for water purification
RAW Reply
please someone correct me if I'm wrong but I think one can use nanoparticles, specially silver nanoparticles for water treatment.
yes that's correct
I think
Nasa has use it in the 60's, copper as water purification in the moon travel.
nanocopper obvius
what is the stm
Brian Reply
is there industrial application of fullrenes. What is the method to prepare fullrene on large scale.?
industrial application...? mmm I think on the medical side as drug carrier, but you should go deeper on your research, I may be wrong
How we are making nano material?
what is a peer
What is meant by 'nano scale'?
What is STMs full form?
scanning tunneling microscope
how nano science is used for hydrophobicity
Do u think that Graphene and Fullrene fiber can be used to make Air Plane body structure the lightest and strongest. Rafiq
what is differents between GO and RGO?
what is simplest way to understand the applications of nano robots used to detect the cancer affected cell of human body.? How this robot is carried to required site of body cell.? what will be the carrier material and how can be detected that correct delivery of drug is done Rafiq
analytical skills graphene is prepared to kill any type viruses .
Any one who tell me about Preparation and application of Nanomaterial for drug Delivery
what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
what school?
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
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Source:  OpenStax, Sustainability: a comprehensive foundation. OpenStax CNX. Nov 11, 2013 Download for free at http://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11325/1.43
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