Protecting the environment is a hot political issue in today’s world. Politicians, activists, celebrities, journalists and everyday people all to have a lot to say about how best to manage and take care of the planet we live on.
The environment goes far beyond a political talking point, though. Throughout the history of humanity, we’ve appreciated its beauty, enjoyed experiencing it and realized the importance of taking care of it. Sometimes, in order to remember what’s really at stake, it helps to take a step back and appreciate nature for what it is.
In order to help you do that, here are 15 illuminating quotes from environmentalists, authors, politicians and scientists on nature, sustainability and the environment.
- “A true conservationist is a man who knows that the world is not given by his fathers, but borrowed from his children.” — John James Audubon
- “I only feel angry when I see waste. When I see people throwing away things we could use.” — Mother Teresa
- “Forests and meat animals compete for the same land. The prodigious appetite of the affluent nations for meat means that agribusiness can pay more than those who want to preserve or restore the forest. We are, quite literally, gambling with the future of our planet — for the sake of hamburgers.” — Peter Singer, Animal Liberation
- “There’s no doomsday scheme made specifically for mankind, only a higher agenda and priority than human race preservation.”― Toba Beta, My Ancestor Was an Ancient Astronaut
- “The environment is where we all meet; where all have a mutual interest; it is the one thing all of us share.” — Lady Bird Johnson
- “Live in each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influence of each.” —Henry David Thoreau
- “This grand show is eternal. It is always sunrise somewhere; the dew is never all dried at once; a shower is forever falling; vapor is ever rising. Eternal sunrise, eternal sunset, eternal dawn and gloaming, on sea and continents and islands, each in its turn, as the round earth rolls.” — John Muir,John of the Mountains: The Unpublished Journals of John Muir
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- “We are such spendthrifts with our lives. The trick of living is to slip on and off the planet with the least fuss you can muster. I’m not running for sainthood. I just happen to think that in life we need to be a little like the farmer, who puts back into the soil what he takes out.”― Paul Newman
- “Those who contemplate the beauty of the Earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts …. There is something infinitely healing in the repeated refrains of nature — the assurance that dawn comes after night, and spring after winter.” — Rachel Carson,Silent Spring
- “Earth provides enough to satisfy every man’s needs, but not every man’s greed.” ― Mahatma Gandhi
- “Sustainability, ensuring the future of life on Earth, is an infinite game, the endless expression of generosity on behalf of all.” — Paul Hawken
- “The poetry of the earth is never ” ― John Keats
- “A nation that destroys its soils destroys itself. Forests are the lungs of our land, purifying the air and giving fresh strength to our people. ” ― Franklin D. Roosevelt
- “You cannot get through a single day without having an impact on the world around you. What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.” —Jane Goodall
- “Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.” — Albert Einstein
As Lady Bird Johnson pointed out, the environment is something we all share and we all have to work together to take care of. That’s why you’ll see similar ideas flowing through quotes both from many years ago and today, from both politicians and poets. All you have to do to understand where those notions come from is to spend some time appreciating nature. If you do, you may even come up with inspirational quotes of your own.