World Environment Day Quotes
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"Thank God men cannot fly, and lay waste the sky as well as the earth."
- Henry David Thoreau
"The sun, the moon and the stars would have disappeared long ago... had they happened to be within the reach of predatory human hands."
- Havelock Ellis
"When a man wantonly destroys one of the works of man we call him a vandal. When he destroys one of the works of god we call him a sportsman."
- Joseph Wood Krutch
"There is a sufficiency in the world for man's need but not for man's greed."
- Mohandas K. Gandhi
"There's so much pollution in the air now that if it weren't for our lungs there'd be no place to put it all."
- Robert Orben
"It wasn't the Exxon Valdez captain's driving that caused the Alaskan oil spill. It was yours."
- Greenpeace advertisement, New York Times, 25 February 1990
"Nature provides a free lunch, but only if we control our appetites."
- William Ruckelshaus
"Because we don't think about future generations, they will never forget us."
- Henrik Tikkanen
"I'm not an environmentalist. I'm an Earth warrior."
- Darryl Cherney, quoted inSmithsonian, April 1990
"Let us a little permit Nature to take her own way; she better understands her own affairs than we."
- Michel de Montaigne, translated
"We never know the worth of water till the well is dry."
- Thomas Fuller
"Water flows uphill towards money."
- Anonymous, saying in the American West, quoted by Ivan Doig in Marc Reisner, Cadillac Desert
"Your grandchildren will likely find it incredible - or even sinful - that you burned up a gallon of gasoline to fetch a pack of cigarettes! "
- Paul MacCready, Jr.
"We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children."
- Native American Proverb
"There are no passengers on Spaceship Earth. We are all crew."
- Marshall McLuhan
"Newspapers: dead trees with information smeared on them."
"They kill good trees to put out bad newspapers."
- James G. Watt
"The use of solar energy has not been opened up because the oil industry does not own the sun."
- Ralph Nader
"The earth we abuse and the living things we kill will, in the end, take their revenge; for in exploiting their presence we are diminishing our future."
- Marya Mannes
"Economic advance is not the same thing as human progress."
- John Clapham
"Suburbia is where the developer bulldozes out the trees, then names the streets after them."
- Bill Vaughn
"For 200 years we've been conquering Nature. Now we're beating it to death."
- Tom McMillan
"If civilization has risen from the Stone Age, it can rise again from the Wastepaper Age."
- Jacques Barzun
"Such is the audacity of man, that he hath learned to counterfeit Nature, yea, and is so bold as to challenge her in her work."
- Pliny the Elder,
"The word "wilderness"occurs approximately three hundred times in the Bible, and all its meanings are derogatory."
- René Dubos
"Till now man has been up against Nature; from now on he will be up against his own nature."
- Dennis Gabor
"A virgin forest is where the hand of man has never set foot."
- Author Unknown
"When a man says to me, "I have the intensest love of nature,"at once I know that he has none."
- Ralph Waldo Emerson
"I conceive that the land belongs to a vast family of which many are dead, few are living, and countless numbers are still unborn."
- Author Unknown
"When we heal the earth, we heal ourselves."
- David Orr
"We cannot command Nature except by obeying her."
- Francis Bacon
"There is nothing in which the birds differ more from man than the way in which they can build and yet leave a landscape as it was before."
- Robert Lynd
"The system of nature, of which man is a part, tends to be self-balancing, self-adjusting, self-cleansing. Not so with technology."
- E.F. Schumacher
"There is hope if people will begin to awaken that spiritual part of themselves, that heartfelt knowledge that we are caretakers of this planet."
- Brooke Medicine Eagle
"The mother of the year should be a sterilized woman with two adopted children."
- Paul R. Ehrlich
"Man is a blind, witless, low brow, anthropocentric clod who inflicts lesions upon the earth."
- Ian McHarg
"Man must feel the earth to know himself and recognize his values.... God made life simple. It is man who complicates it."
- Charles A. Lindbergh
"The control man has secured over nature has far outrun his control over himself."
- Ernest Jones
"The magnificence of mountains, the serenity of nature - nothing is safe from the idiot marks of man's passing."
- Loudon Wainwright
"Every day is Earth Day."
- Author Unknown
"Remember when atmospheric contaminants were romantically called stardust? "
- Lane Olinghouse
"Nature's laws affirm instead of prohibit. If you violate her laws you are your own prosecuting attorney, judge, jury, and hangman."
- Luther Burbank
"How can the spirit of the earth like the white man?... Everywhere the white man has touched it, it is sore."
- Anonymous Wintu Woman
"The universe is not required to be in perfect harmony with human ambition."
- Carl Sagan
"The gross heathenism of civilization has generally destroyed nature, and poetry, and all that is spiritual."
- John Muir, letter to J.B. McChesney, 19 September 1871
"Man maketh a death which Nature never made."
- Edward Young
"It is a curious situation that the sea, from which life first arose, should now be threatened by the activities of one form of that life."
- Rachel Carson
"Man is a complex being: he makes deserts bloom - and lakes die."
- Gil Stern
"To live a pure unselfish life, one must count nothing as one's own in the midst of abundance."
"Take care of the earth and she will take care of you."
- Author Unknown
"We could have saved the Earth but we were too damned cheap."
- Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.
"Waste not the smallest thing created, for grains of sand make mountains, and atomies infinity."
- E. Knight
"Opie, you haven't finished your milk. We can't put it back in the cow, you know."
- Aunt Bee Taylor
"The activist is not the man who says the river is dirty. The activist is the man who cleans up the river."
- Ross Perot
"Civilization... wrecks the planet from seafloor to stratosphere."
- Richard Bach
"It is horrifying that we have to fight our own government to save the environment."
- Ansel Adams
"For a successful technology, reality must take precedence over public relations, for Nature cannot be fooled."
- Richard P. Feynman
"When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world."
- John Muir
"Understanding the laws of nature does not mean that we are immune to their operations."
- David Gerrold
"Man has lost the capacity to foresee and to forestall. He will end by destroying the earth."
- Albert Schweitzer
"Humanity is on the march, earth itself is left behind."
- David Ehrenfeld
"Nature always strikes back. It takes all the running we can do to remain in the same place."
- Rene Dubos
"In its broadest ecological context, economic development is the development of more intensive ways of exploiting the natural environment."
- Richard Wilkinson
"We have been god-like in the planned breeding of our domesticated plants, but rabbit-like in the unplanned breeding of ourselves."
- Arnold Toynbee
"Human destiny is bound to remain a gamble, because at some unpredictable time and in some unforeseeable manner nature will strike back."
- Rene Dubos
"Time and space - time to be alone, space to move about - these may well become the great scarcities of tomorrow."
- Edwin Way Teale, Autumn Across America, 1956
"Waste is a tax on the whole people."
- Albert W. Atwood
"It appears to be a law that you cannot have a deep sympathy with both man and nature."
- Henry David Thoreau
"The rose has thorns only for those who would gather it."
- Chinese Proverb
"We shall require a substantially new manner of thinking if mankind is to survive."
- Albert Einstein
"When you use a manual push mower, you're "cutting"down on pollution and the only thing in danger of running out of gas is you! "
- Grey Livingston
"After a visit to the beach, it's hard to believe that we live in a material world."
- Pam Shaw
"The human race will be the cancer of the planet."
- Julian Huxley
"Give a man a fish, and he can eat for a day. But teach a man how to fish, and he'll be dead of mercury poisoning inside of three years."
- Charles Haas