Gaylord Nelson Quotes

Gaylord Anton Nelson (June 4, 1916 – July 3, 2005) was an American politician from Wisconsin who served as a United States Senator and governor. A Democrat, he was the founder of Earth Day, which launched a new wave of environmental activism.

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Gaylord Nelson


The ultimate test of a man's conscience may be his willingness to sacrifice something today for future generations whose words of thanks will not be heard.

Gaylord Nelson


The issues are by some geometric number - 100 or 200 or 500 - times more complicated today than we appreciated them to be when Franklin Roosevelt was around.

Gaylord Nelson


The month of April 2000 will provide an unprecedented showcase for the clean energy options available to individuals, businesses and the government, .. As tens of millions of people take action to support clean energy during Earth Month, the 'New Energy for a New Era' campaign will catapult us toward a clean and affordable energy future.

Gaylord Nelson


The bigger the population gets, the more serious the problems become... We have to address the population issue. The United Nations, with the U.S. supporting it, took the position in Cairo in 1994 that every country was responsible for stabilizing its own population. It can be done. But in this country, it's phony to say 'I'm for the environment but not for limiting immigration.'

Gaylord Nelson


The wealth of the nation is its air, water, soil, forests, minerals, rivers, lakes, oceans, scenic beauty, wildlife habitats and biodiversity... that's all there is. That's the whole economy. That's where all the economic activity and jobs come from. These biological systems are the sustaining wealth of the world.

Gaylord Nelson


There is a great need for the introduction of new values in our society, where bigger is not necessarily better, where slower can be faster, and where less can be more.

Gaylord Nelson


All nations are degrading and consuming their environment to a point beyond capacity. In the past 15 years in the U.S. we have added 1300 cities with populations over 100,000. When the environment is forced to file Chapter 11, the ecology collapses. Nations recover from war but not from a failed eco-system. The status of our environment is more threatening than all wars. It is forever.

Gaylord Nelson


Reaching a general understanding that sustainability is the ultimate issue will finally bring us face-to-face with the political challenge of forging a sustainable society during the next few decades. It is a challenge we can meet if we have the leadership and the political will to do so.

Gaylord Nelson


The ultimate test of man's conscience may be his willingness to sacrifice something today for future generations whose words of thanks will not be heard.

Gaylord Nelson


In the state of Wisconsin it's mandated that teachers in the social sciences and hard sciences have to start giving environmental education by the first grade, through high school.

Gaylord Nelson


“The most important environmental issue is one that is rarely mentioned, and that is the lack of a conservation ethic in our culture.”

Gaylord Nelson


“Franklin Roosevelt was very concerned about environmental issues.”

Gaylord Nelson


“In the state of Wisconsin it's mandated that teachers in the social sciences and hard sciences have to start giving environmental education by the first grade, through high school.”

Gaylord Nelson


“Nuclear war is not inevitable, but major degradation of our environment with grave consequences is inevitable unless we reverse the trend.”

Gaylord Nelson


“It was truly an astonishing grassroots explosion, ... The objective was to get a nationwide demonstration of concern for the environment so large that it would shake the political establishment out of its lethargy.”

Gaylord Nelson