About the Environmental Narratives Project

This project aims to assess the narratives surrounding environmental issues,  grounding them in both historical and present-day context. Oftentimes environmental narratives are “lost” in one direction or the other—or co-opted by less-than-factual accounts—and their study can help us better communicate regarding environmental issues. Consider just a few of the very important narratives we hear about on a regular basis: jobs versus the environment; political party views of the environment; religion and the environment; the benefits/harms of GMOs, government overreach versus valuable public services; the benefits/harms of fracking public versus private rights; and, of course, virtually everything you hear about climate change.

Study of these narratives is important so that we can better communicate important environmental issues and lessons to both students of environmental law and policy the general public. This site will be a repository of case studies and associated teaching/research materials for academics and other professionals, so that they can gain insight into how environmental narratives are won, are lost and/or do not match the facts/reality. The more we invest in understanding, talking, teaching and researching these case studies/narratives, the better equipped we will be to properly message, to “win” the narrative, and to “understand the other side” so that we can more effectively bring about environmental change.

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