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Why the Environmental Movement Is Not Winning

A new report places the blame on misguided strategies of environmental funders.

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"In his important monograph Just Another Emperor: The Myths and Realities of Philanthrocapitalism, former Ford Foundation director Michael Edwards cautions that one of the downsides of increasingly infusing the nonprofit world with business ideals is that social change organizations are expected to churn out good, quarterly metrics. Extreme advocates of these ideas expect social change organizations to report mounds of data and compete with one another for funding based on "numbers" and "deliverables." But on February 1, 1960, sitting at a "Whites Only" lunch counter at a Woolworth's in Greensboro, N.C., there were only four African American students from a local college. Although those may not appear to be impressive metrics, consider the scale and scope of the movement they helped launch."  

Peter Montague is a historian and journalist whose work has appeared in Counterpunch, Huffington Post, the Nation and many other publications. He has co-authored two books on toxic heavy metals.

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