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Eco Quotes

Eco Quotes collects environmental quotes, green sayings, ecology quotations and other inspiring Earth-loving quips, aphorisms, nature observations and ecological wisdom from many of the greatest environmental thinkers, conservationists and ecology activists in history.

Gandhi Billboard photo by MasolinoLive simply that others may simply live. - Mohandas K. Gandhi

This world is indeed a living being endowed with a soul and intelligence...a single visible living entity containing all other living entities, which by their nature are all related. - Plato, Timaeus, 4th century BC

Only when the last tree has been cut down, / Only when the last river has been poisoned, / Only when the last fish has been caught, / Only then will you find that money cannot be eaten. - Native American Cree Tribe Prophecy

Upon this handful of soil our survival depends. Husband it and it will grow our food, our fuel, and our shelter and surround us with beauty. Abuse it and the soil will collapse and die, taking humanity with it. - From Vedas, among the oldest Sanskrit literature and the oldest scriptures of Hinduism, 1500 BC

Thank God men cannot fly, and lay waste the sky as well as the earth. - Henry David Thoreau, 1861

We generate our own environment. We get exactly what we deserve. How can we resent a life we've created ourselves? Who's to blame, who's to credit but us? Who can change it, anytime we wish, but us? - Richard Bach

There are no unsacred places; / there are only sacred places / and desecrated places. - Wendell Berry

Mankind’s irrational destruction of nature bothers me a lot. Mankind is slowly committing suicide, or not so slowly. Each day it accelerates, producing all kinds of wastes—corporal, industrial, atomic—poisoning the earth, the sea and the air. He destroys the very environment that gives him sustenance. Centuries and centuries of civilization to arrive at this? What a piece of work is man! No other animal would be so stupid. Plagues of locusts are sporadic, they have a limit…” - Luis Bunuel, 1977

The most alarming of all man’s assaults upon the environment is the contamination of air, earth, rivers, and sea with dangerous and even lethal materials. This pollution is for the most part irrecoverable; the chain of evil it initiates not only in the world that must support life but in living tissues is for the most part irreversible. In this now universal contamination of the environment, chemicals are the sinister and little-recognized partners of radiation in changing the very nature of the world—the very nature of its life. - Rachel Carson (1907-1964), Silent Spring

We have forgotten how to be good guests, how to walk lightly on the earth as its other creatures do. - Barbara Ward, Only One Earth, 1972

Never, no never, did nature say one thing and wisdom say another. - Edmund Burke (1729-1797), Letters on a Regicide Peace, 1797

If all mankind were to disappear, the world would regenerate back to the rich state of equilibrium that existed ten thousand years ago. If insects were to vanish, the environment would collapse into chaos. – Edward O. Wilson

Our environmental problems originate in the hubris of imagining ourselves as the central nervous system or the brain of nature. We're not the brain, we are a cancer on nature. - Dave Foreman

We won't have a society if we destroy the environment. - Margaret Mead

When despair for the world grows in me / and I wake in the night at the least sound / in fear of what my life and my children's lives may be, / I go and lie down where the wood drake / rests in his beauty on the water, and the heron feeds. / I come into the peace of wild things / who do not tax their lives with forethought / of grief. I come into the presence of still water, / and I feel above me the day-blind stars / waiting for their light. For a time / I rest in the grace of the world, and am free. - Wendell Berry

It is horrifying that we have to fight our own government to save the environment. - Ansel Adams

People tend to focus on the here and now. The problem is that, once global warming is something that most people can feel in the course of their daily lives, it will be too late to prevent much larger, potentially catastrophic changes. - Elizabeth Kolbert

The famous balance of nature is the most extraordinary of all cybernetic systems. Left to itself, it is always self-regulated. - Joseph Wood Krutch (1893-1970), Saturday Review, June 8, 1963.

To be whole. To be complete. Wildness reminds us what it means to be human, what we are connected to rather than what we are separate from. - Terry Tempest Williams, testimony before the Senate Subcommittee on Forest & Public Lands Management regarding the Utah Public Lands Management Act of 1995. Washington, D.C. July 13, 1995

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Eco Tip

Grow a garden or a fruit tree. A garden is fun, provides exercise, teaches kids about nature, reduces your carbon footprint (since your food need not be shipped to you), and controls what pesticides or chemicals do or do not go into the food you eat. Not to mention how delicious and nutritious fresh-picked fruits and vegetables are! More tips...

Eco Quote

The weight of our civilization has become so great, it now ranks as a global force and a significant wild card in the human future along with the Ice Ages and other vicissitudes of a volatile and changeable planetary system.- Dianne Dumanoski, Rethinking Environmentalism, December 13, 1998.  More quotes...