Greenpeace
Overview
 
Greenpeace is a non-governmental
Non-governmental organization
A non-governmental organization is a legally constituted organization created by natural or legal persons that operates independently from any government. The term originated from the United Nations , and is normally used to refer to organizations that do not form part of the government and are...

 environmental
Environmentalism
Environmentalism is a broad philosophy, ideology and social movement regarding concerns for environmental conservation and improvement of the health of the environment, particularly as the measure for this health seeks to incorporate the concerns of non-human elements...

 organization with offices in over forty countries and with an international coordinating body in Amsterdam
Amsterdam
Amsterdam is the largest city and the capital of the Netherlands. The current position of Amsterdam as capital city of the Kingdom of the Netherlands is governed by the constitution of August 24, 1815 and its successors. Amsterdam has a population of 783,364 within city limits, an urban population...

, The Netherlands
Netherlands
The Netherlands is a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, located mainly in North-West Europe and with several islands in the Caribbean. Mainland Netherlands borders the North Sea to the north and west, Belgium to the south, and Germany to the east, and shares maritime borders...

. Greenpeace states its goal is to "ensure the ability of the Earth
Earth
Earth is the third planet from the Sun, and the densest and fifth-largest of the eight planets in the Solar System. It is also the largest of the Solar System's four terrestrial planets...

 to nurture life
Life
Life is a characteristic that distinguishes objects that have signaling and self-sustaining processes from those that do not, either because such functions have ceased , or else because they lack such functions and are classified as inanimate...

 in all its diversity
Biodiversity
Biodiversity is the degree of variation of life forms within a given ecosystem, biome, or an entire planet. Biodiversity is a measure of the health of ecosystems. Biodiversity is in part a function of climate. In terrestrial habitats, tropical regions are typically rich whereas polar regions...

" and focuses its work on world wide issues such as global warming
Global warming
Global warming refers to the rising average temperature of Earth's atmosphere and oceans and its projected continuation. In the last 100 years, Earth's average surface temperature increased by about with about two thirds of the increase occurring over just the last three decades...

, deforestation
Deforestation
Deforestation is the removal of a forest or stand of trees where the land is thereafter converted to a nonforest use. Examples of deforestation include conversion of forestland to farms, ranches, or urban use....

, overfishing
Overfishing
Overfishing occurs when fishing activities reduce fish stocks below an acceptable level. This can occur in any body of water from a pond to the oceans....

, commercial whaling
Whaling
Whaling is the hunting of whales mainly for meat and oil. Its earliest forms date to at least 3000 BC. Various coastal communities have long histories of sustenance whaling and harvesting beached whales...

 and anti-nuclear
Anti-nuclear
The anti-nuclear movement is a social movement that opposes the use of nuclear technologies. Many direct action groups, environmental groups, and professional organisations have identified themselves with the movement at the local, national, and international level...

 issues. Greenpeace uses direct action
Direct action
Direct action is activity undertaken by individuals, groups, or governments to achieve political, economic, or social goals outside of normal social/political channels. This can include nonviolent and violent activities which target persons, groups, or property deemed offensive to the direct action...

, lobbying
Lobbying
Lobbying is the act of attempting to influence decisions made by officials in the government, most often legislators or members of regulatory agencies. Lobbying is done by various people or groups, from private-sector individuals or corporations, fellow legislators or government officials, or...

 and research
Research
Research can be defined as the scientific search for knowledge, or as any systematic investigation, to establish novel facts, solve new or existing problems, prove new ideas, or develop new theories, usually using a scientific method...

 to achieve its goals. The global organization does not accept funding from governments, corporations or political parties, relying on more than 2.8 million individual supporters and foundation grants.
Encyclopedia
Greenpeace is a non-governmental
Non-governmental organization
A non-governmental organization is a legally constituted organization created by natural or legal persons that operates independently from any government. The term originated from the United Nations , and is normally used to refer to organizations that do not form part of the government and are...

 environmental
Environmentalism
Environmentalism is a broad philosophy, ideology and social movement regarding concerns for environmental conservation and improvement of the health of the environment, particularly as the measure for this health seeks to incorporate the concerns of non-human elements...

 organization with offices in over forty countries and with an international coordinating body in Amsterdam
Amsterdam
Amsterdam is the largest city and the capital of the Netherlands. The current position of Amsterdam as capital city of the Kingdom of the Netherlands is governed by the constitution of August 24, 1815 and its successors. Amsterdam has a population of 783,364 within city limits, an urban population...

, The Netherlands
Netherlands
The Netherlands is a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, located mainly in North-West Europe and with several islands in the Caribbean. Mainland Netherlands borders the North Sea to the north and west, Belgium to the south, and Germany to the east, and shares maritime borders...

. Greenpeace states its goal is to "ensure the ability of the Earth
Earth
Earth is the third planet from the Sun, and the densest and fifth-largest of the eight planets in the Solar System. It is also the largest of the Solar System's four terrestrial planets...

 to nurture life
Life
Life is a characteristic that distinguishes objects that have signaling and self-sustaining processes from those that do not, either because such functions have ceased , or else because they lack such functions and are classified as inanimate...

 in all its diversity
Biodiversity
Biodiversity is the degree of variation of life forms within a given ecosystem, biome, or an entire planet. Biodiversity is a measure of the health of ecosystems. Biodiversity is in part a function of climate. In terrestrial habitats, tropical regions are typically rich whereas polar regions...

" and focuses its work on world wide issues such as global warming
Global warming
Global warming refers to the rising average temperature of Earth's atmosphere and oceans and its projected continuation. In the last 100 years, Earth's average surface temperature increased by about with about two thirds of the increase occurring over just the last three decades...

, deforestation
Deforestation
Deforestation is the removal of a forest or stand of trees where the land is thereafter converted to a nonforest use. Examples of deforestation include conversion of forestland to farms, ranches, or urban use....

, overfishing
Overfishing
Overfishing occurs when fishing activities reduce fish stocks below an acceptable level. This can occur in any body of water from a pond to the oceans....

, commercial whaling
Whaling
Whaling is the hunting of whales mainly for meat and oil. Its earliest forms date to at least 3000 BC. Various coastal communities have long histories of sustenance whaling and harvesting beached whales...

 and anti-nuclear
Anti-nuclear
The anti-nuclear movement is a social movement that opposes the use of nuclear technologies. Many direct action groups, environmental groups, and professional organisations have identified themselves with the movement at the local, national, and international level...

 issues. Greenpeace uses direct action
Direct action
Direct action is activity undertaken by individuals, groups, or governments to achieve political, economic, or social goals outside of normal social/political channels. This can include nonviolent and violent activities which target persons, groups, or property deemed offensive to the direct action...

, lobbying
Lobbying
Lobbying is the act of attempting to influence decisions made by officials in the government, most often legislators or members of regulatory agencies. Lobbying is done by various people or groups, from private-sector individuals or corporations, fellow legislators or government officials, or...

 and research
Research
Research can be defined as the scientific search for knowledge, or as any systematic investigation, to establish novel facts, solve new or existing problems, prove new ideas, or develop new theories, usually using a scientific method...

 to achieve its goals. The global organization does not accept funding from governments, corporations or political parties, relying on more than 2.8 million individual supporters and foundation grants. Greenpeace is a founding member of the INGO Accountability Charter
International Non-Governmental Organisations Accountability Charter
The International Non-Governmental Organisations Accountability Charter is a charter, founded in 2006 by a group of independent non-profit organisations, which is intended to foster accountability and transparency of non-governmental organizations, as well as stakeholder communication and...

; an international nongovernmental organization that intends to foster accountability and transparency of non-governmental organizations.

Greenpeace evolved from the peace movement and anti-nuclear protests in Vancouver
Vancouver
Vancouver is a coastal seaport city on the mainland of British Columbia, Canada. It is the hub of Greater Vancouver, which, with over 2.3 million residents, is the third most populous metropolitan area in the country,...

, British Columbia
British Columbia
British Columbia is the westernmost of Canada's provinces and is known for its natural beauty, as reflected in its Latin motto, Splendor sine occasu . Its name was chosen by Queen Victoria in 1858...

, in the early 1970s. On September 15, 1971, the newly founded Don't Make a Wave Committee
Don't Make a Wave Committee
The Don't Make a Wave Committee was the name of the anti-nuclear organization which later evolved into Greenpeace, a global environmental organization...

 sent a chartered ship, Phyllis Cormack, renamed Greenpeace for the protest, from Vancouver to oppose United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 testing of nuclear devices
Nuclear weapon
A nuclear weapon is an explosive device that derives its destructive force from nuclear reactions, either fission or a combination of fission and fusion. Both reactions release vast quantities of energy from relatively small amounts of matter. The first fission bomb test released the same amount...

 in Amchitka
Amchitka
Amchitka is a volcanic, tectonically unstable island in the Rat Islands group of the Aleutian Islands in southwest Alaska. It is part of the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge. The island is about long, and from wide...

, Alaska
Alaska
Alaska is the largest state in the United States by area. It is situated in the northwest extremity of the North American continent, with Canada to the east, the Arctic Ocean to the north, and the Pacific Ocean to the west and south, with Russia further west across the Bering Strait...

. The Don't Make a Wave Committee subsequently adopted the name Greenpeace.

In a few years, Greenpeace spread to several countries and started to campaign on other environmental issues such as commercial whaling and toxic waste
Toxic waste
Toxic waste is waste material that can cause death or injury to living creatures. It spreads quite easily and can contaminate lakes and rivers. The term is often used interchangeably with “hazardous waste”, or discarded material that can pose a long-term risk to health or environment.Toxic waste...

. In the late 1970s, the different regional Greenpeace groups formed Greenpeace International to oversee the goals and operations of the regional organizations globally. Greenpeace received international attention during the 80s when the French intelligence agency bombed
Sinking of the Rainbow Warrior
The sinking of the Rainbow Warrior, codenamed Opération Satanique, was an operation by the "action" branch of the French foreign intelligence services, the Direction Générale de la Sécurité Extérieure , carried out on July 10, 1985...

 the Rainbow Warrior in Auckland
Auckland
The Auckland metropolitan area , in the North Island of New Zealand, is the largest and most populous urban area in the country with residents, percent of the country's population. Auckland also has the largest Polynesian population of any city in the world...

's Waitemata Harbour
Waitemata Harbour
The quite famous Waitemata Harbour is the main access by sea to Auckland, New Zealand. For this reason it is often referred to as Auckland Harbour, despite the fact that it is only one of two harbours surrounding the city, and is crossed by the Auckland Harbour Bridge. The Waitemata forms the north...

, one of the most well-known vessels operated by Greenpeace, killing one individual. In the following years, Greenpeace evolved into one of the largest environmental organizations in the world.

Greenpeace is known for its direct action
Direct action
Direct action is activity undertaken by individuals, groups, or governments to achieve political, economic, or social goals outside of normal social/political channels. This can include nonviolent and violent activities which target persons, groups, or property deemed offensive to the direct action...

s and has been described as the most visible environmental organization in the world. Greenpeace has raised environmental issues to public knowledge, influenced both the private and the public sector. Greenpeace has also been a source of controversy; its motives and methods have received criticism and the organization's direct action
Direct action
Direct action is activity undertaken by individuals, groups, or governments to achieve political, economic, or social goals outside of normal social/political channels. This can include nonviolent and violent activities which target persons, groups, or property deemed offensive to the direct action...

s have sparked legal actions against Greenpeace activists.

Origins

In the late 1960s, the U.S. had plans for an underground nuclear weapon test in the tectonically unstable island of Amchitka
Amchitka
Amchitka is a volcanic, tectonically unstable island in the Rat Islands group of the Aleutian Islands in southwest Alaska. It is part of the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge. The island is about long, and from wide...

 in Alaska
Alaska
Alaska is the largest state in the United States by area. It is situated in the northwest extremity of the North American continent, with Canada to the east, the Arctic Ocean to the north, and the Pacific Ocean to the west and south, with Russia further west across the Bering Strait...

. Because of the 1964 Alaska earthquake, the plans raised some concerns of the test triggering earthquakes and causing a tsunami
Tsunami
A tsunami is a series of water waves caused by the displacement of a large volume of a body of water, typically an ocean or a large lake...

. Anti-nuclear activists protested against the test on the border of the U.S. and Canada with signs reading "Don't Make A Wave. It's Your Fault If Our Fault Goes". The protests did not stop the U.S. from detonating the bomb.

While no earthquake or tsunami followed the test, the opposition grew when the U.S. announced they would detonate a bomb five times more powerful than the first one. Among the opposers were Jim Bohlen
Jim Bohlen
Jim Bohlen , was an American engineer who worked on the Atlas ICBM missile program, later emigrated to Canada after becoming disillusioned with the US government's nuclear policy during the Cold War and one of the co-founders of Greenpeace.Bohlen, one of the approximately half-dozen founders of...

, a veteran who had served the U.S. Navy and Irving
Irving Stowe
Irving Harold Stowe was a Yale lawyer, activist, visionary and a key founder of Greenpeace. He was named one of the “BAM 100” ....

 and Dorothy Stowe
Dorothy Stowe
Dorothy Stowe, born Dorothy Anne Rabinowitz was an American born Canadian social activist and environmentalist. She co-founded Greenpeace.-Biography:Stowe was born in Providence, Rhode Island...

, a Jewish couple, who had recently become Quakers. As members of the Sierra Club Canada, they were frustrated by the lack of action by the organization. From Irving Stowe, Jim Bohlen learned of a form of passive resistance
Nonviolent resistance
Nonviolent resistance is the practice of achieving goals through symbolic protests, civil disobedience, economic or political noncooperation, and other methods, without using violence. It is largely synonymous with civil resistance...

, "bearing witness", where objectionable activity is protested simply by mere presence. Jim Bohlen's wife Marie came up with the idea to sail to Amchitka, inspired by the anti-nuclear voyages of Albert Bigelow
Albert Bigelow
Albert S. Bigelow was a pacifist and former United States Navy Commander, who came to prominence in the 1950s as the skipper of the Golden Rule, the first vessel to attempt disruption of a nuclear test in protest against nuclear weapons.-Peace Movement:Prior to his involvement in the peace...

 in 1958. The idea ended up in the press and was linked to The Sierra Club. The Sierra Club did not like this connection and in 1970 The Don't Make a Wave Committee was established for the protest. Early meetings were held in the Shaughnessy home of Robert
Robert Hunter (journalist)
Robert Lorne Hunter was a Canadian environmentalist, journalist, author and politician. A member of the Don't Make a Wave Committee in 1969 with Dorothy and Irving Stowe, Marie and Jim Bohlen, and Ben and Dorothy Metcalfe...

 and Bobbi Hunter. Subsequently the Stowe home at 2775 Courtenay St. became the HQ. The first office was opened in a back-room, storefront on Cypress and Bwy SE corner in Kitsilano, (Vancouver) before moving to West 4th at Maple (see below).

There is some debate as to who are the actual founders of The Don't Make a Wave Committee. Researcher Vanessa Timmer has referred the early members as "an unlikely group of loosely organized protestors". According to the current Greenpeace web page, the founders were Dorothy and Irving Stowe, Marie and Jim Bohlen, Ben and Dorothy Metcalfe, and Robert Hunter. The book The Greenpeace Story states that the founders were Irving Stowe, Jim Bohlen and Paul Cote, a law student and peace activist. An interview with Dorothy Stowe, Dorothy Metcalfe, Jim Bohlen and Robert Hunter identifies the founders as Paul Cote, Irving and Dorothy Stowe and Jim and Marie Bohlen. Paul Watson
Paul Watson
Paul Watson is a Canadian animal rights and environmental activist, who founded and is president of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, a direct action group devoted to marine conservation....

, who also participated in the anti-nuclear protests, maintains that he also was one of the founders. Another early member, Patrick Moore
Patrick Moore (environmentalist)
Patrick Moore is a former environmental activist, known as one of the early members of Greenpeace, in which he was an activist from 1971 to 1986...

 also has stated that he was one of the founders. Greenpeace used to list Moore among "founders and first members" of The Don't Make a Wave Committee but has later stated that while Moore was a significant early member, he was not a founder. According to Moore's own letter he applied to the already existing organization in March 1971.

Irving Stowe
Irving Stowe
Irving Harold Stowe was a Yale lawyer, activist, visionary and a key founder of Greenpeace. He was named one of the “BAM 100” ....

 arranged a benefit concert
Benefit concert
A benefit concert or charity concert is a concert, show or gala featuring musicians, comedians, or other performers that is held for a charitable purpose, often directed at a specific and immediate humanitarian crisis. Such events raise both funds and public awareness to address the cause at...

 (supported by Joan Baez
Joan Baez
Joan Chandos Baez is an American folk singer, songwriter, musician and a prominent activist in the fields of human rights, peace and environmental justice....

) that took place on October 16, 1970 at the Pacific Coliseum
Pacific Coliseum
Pacific Coliseum is an indoor arena, at Hastings Park, in Vancouver, British Columbia.Completed in 1968, at the former site of the Pacific National Exhibition, the arena currently holds 16,281, for ice hockey, though capacity at its opening was 15,713....

 in Vancouver. The concert created the financial basis for the first Greenpeace campaign. Amchitka, the 1970 concert that launched Greenpeace has been published by Greenpeace in November 2009 on CD and is also available as mp3 download via the Amchitka concert website. Using the money raised with the concert, the Don't Make a Wave Committee chartered a ship, the Phyllis Cormack owned and sailed by John Cormack. The ship was renamed Greenpeace for the protest after a term coined by activist Bill Darnell.

In the fall of 1971 the ship sailed towards Amchitka and faced the U.S. Coast Guard ship Confidence
USCGC Confidence (WMEC-619)
USCGC Confidence is a United States Coast Guard medium endurance cutter.-History:Construction of the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Confidence began at the United States Coast Guard Yard in Curtis Bay, Maryland, in 1965 and was completed in 1966...

 which forced the activists to turn back. Because of this and the increasingly bad weather the crew decided to return to Canada only to find out that the news about their journey and reported support from the crew of the Confidence had generated sympathy for their protest. After this Greenpeace tried to navigate to the test site with other vessels, until the U.S. detonated the bomb. The nuclear test was criticized and the U.S. decided not to continue with their test plans at Amchitka.

In 1972, The Don't Make a Wave committee changed their official name to Greenpeace Foundation. While the organization was founded under a different name in 1970 and was officially named Greenpeace in 1972, the organization itself dates its birth to the first protest of 1971. Greenpeace also states that "there was no single founder, and the name, idea, spirit, tactics, and internationalism of the organization all can be said to have separate lineages".

As Rex Weyler
Rex Weyler
Rex Weyler is an American / Canadian author, journalist and ecologist. He has worked as a writer, editor, and publisher at newspapers and magazines, and occasionally as a commentator on Canadian television...

 put it in his chronology, Greenpeace, in 1969, Irving and Dorothy Stowe's "quiet home on Courtenay Street would soon become a hub of monumental, global significance". Some of the first Greenpeace meetings were held there, and it served as the first office of the Greenpeace Foundation.

After the office in the Stowe home, (and after the first concert fund-raiser) Greenpeace functions moved to other private homes before settling, in the fall of 1974, in a small office shared with the SPEC environmental group, at 2007 W. 4th Avenue, at Maple Street, across from the Bimini neighbourhood pub. The address of this office has since been changed to 2009 W. 4th Avenue. The building still exists, and the office is up the stair at the “2009” door.

First campaigns after Amchitka

After the nuclear tests at Amchitka were over, Greenpeace moved its focus to the French atmospheric nuclear weapons testing at the Moruroa Atoll
Moruroa
Moruroa , also historically known as Aopuni, is an atoll which forms part of the Tuamotu Archipelago in French Polynesia in the southern Pacific Ocean...

 in French Polynesia
French Polynesia
French Polynesia is an overseas country of the French Republic . It is made up of several groups of Polynesian islands, the most famous island being Tahiti in the Society Islands group, which is also the most populous island and the seat of the capital of the territory...

. The young organization needed help for their protests and were contacted by David McTaggart
David McTaggart
David Fraser McTaggart was a Canadian-born environmentalist who played a central part in the foundation of Greenpeace International....

, a former businessman living in New Zealand. In 1972 the yacht Vega, a 12.5 metres (41 ft) ketch owned by David McTaggart
David McTaggart
David Fraser McTaggart was a Canadian-born environmentalist who played a central part in the foundation of Greenpeace International....

, was renamed Greenpeace III and sailed in an anti-nuclear protest into the exclusion zone at Moruroa to attempt to disrupt French nuclear testing. This voyage was sponsored and organized by the New Zealand branch of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament
Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament
The Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament is an anti-nuclear organisation that advocates unilateral nuclear disarmament by the United Kingdom, international nuclear disarmament and tighter international arms regulation through agreements such as the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty...

. The French Navy tried to stop the protest in several ways, including assaulting David McTaggart. McTaggart was supposedly beaten to the point that he lost sight in one of his eyes. Luckily, one of McTaggart's crew members photographed the incident and went public. After the assault was publicized, France announced it would stop the atmospheric nuclear tests.

In the mid-1970s some Greenpeace members started an independent campaign, Project Ahab, against commercial whaling
Whaling
Whaling is the hunting of whales mainly for meat and oil. Its earliest forms date to at least 3000 BC. Various coastal communities have long histories of sustenance whaling and harvesting beached whales...

, since Irving Stowe was against Greenpeace focusing on other issues than nuclear weapons. After Irving Stowe died in 1975, Phyllis Cormack left from Vancouver to face Soviet whalers on the coast of California. Greenpeace activists disrupted the whaling by going between the harpoons and the whales, and the footage of the protests spread across the world. Later in the 1970s the organization widened its focus to include toxic waste
Toxic waste
Toxic waste is waste material that can cause death or injury to living creatures. It spreads quite easily and can contaminate lakes and rivers. The term is often used interchangeably with “hazardous waste”, or discarded material that can pose a long-term risk to health or environment.Toxic waste...

 and commercial seal hunting
Seal hunting
Seal hunting, or sealing, is the personal or commercial hunting of seals. The hunt is currently practiced in five countries: Canada, where most of the world's seal hunting takes place, Namibia, the Danish region of Greenland, Norway and Russia...

.

Organizational development

Greenpeace evolved from a group of Canadian protesters in a sail boat, into a less conservative group of environmentalists who were more reflective of the counterculture
Counterculture
Counterculture is a sociological term used to describe the values and norms of behavior of a cultural group, or subculture, that run counter to those of the social mainstream of the day, the cultural equivalent of political opposition. Counterculture can also be described as a group whose behavior...

 and hippie
Hippie
The hippie subculture was originally a youth movement that arose in the United States during the mid-1960s and spread to other countries around the world. The etymology of the term 'hippie' is from hipster, and was initially used to describe beatniks who had moved into San Francisco's...

 youth movements of the 1960s and 1970s. The social and cultural background from which Greenpeace emerged heralded a period of de-conditioning away from old world antecedents and sought to develop new codes of social, environmental and political behavior. Historian Frank Zelko has commented that "unlike Friends of the Earth
Friends of the Earth
Friends of the Earth International is an international network of environmental organizations in 76 countries.FOEI is assisted by a small secretariat which provides support for the network and its agreed major campaigns...

, for example, which sprung fully formed from the forehead of David Brower, Greenpeace developed in a more evolutionary manner."

In the mid-1970s independent groups using the name Greenpeace started springing up world wide. By 1977 there were 15 to 20 Greenpeace groups around the world. At the same time the Canadian Greenpeace office was heavily in debt. Disputes between offices over fund-raising and organizational direction split the global movement as the North American offices were reluctant to be under the authority of the Vancouver office and its president Patrick Moore
Patrick Moore (environmentalist)
Patrick Moore is a former environmental activist, known as one of the early members of Greenpeace, in which he was an activist from 1971 to 1986...

.

After the incidents of Moruroa, David McTaggart had moved to France to battle in court with the French state and helped to develop the cooperation of European Greenpeace groups. David McTaggart
David McTaggart
David Fraser McTaggart was a Canadian-born environmentalist who played a central part in the foundation of Greenpeace International....

 lobbied the Canadian Greenpeace Foundation to accept a new structure which would bring the scattered Greenpeace offices under the auspices of a single global organization. The European Greenpeace paid the debt of the Canadian Greenpeace office and on October 14, 1979, Greenpeace International came into existence. Under the new structure, the local offices would contribute a percentage of their income to the international organization, which would take responsibility for setting the overall direction of the movement with each regional office having one vote. Some Greenpeace groups, namely London Greenpeace
London Greenpeace
London Greenpeace was an Anarchist environmentalist activist collective that existed between 1972 and 2001. They were based in London, and came to international prominence when two of their activists refused to capitulate to McDonald's in the landmark libel case known as "McLibel".-Origins:In 1972...

 (dissolved in 2001) and the US-based Greenpeace Foundation
Greenpeace Foundation
Greenpeace Foundation is an environmental organization based in Hawaii. It was officially founded in 1976 as an independent offshoot of the Canadian Greenpeace Foundation and was the first Greenpeace in the United States...

 (still operational) however decided to remain independent from Greenpeace International.

Priorities and campaigns

On its official website, Greenpeace defines its mission as the following:

Climate and energy

Greenpeace was one of the first parties to formulate a sustainable development
Sustainable development
Sustainable development is a pattern of resource use, that aims to meet human needs while preserving the environment so that these needs can be met not only in the present, but also for generations to come...

 scenario for climate change mitigation, which it did in 1993. According to sociologists Marc Mormont and Christine Dasnoy, Greenpeace played a significant role in raising public awareness of global warming in the 1990s. The organization has also focused on CFC
Chlorofluorocarbon
A chlorofluorocarbon is an organic compound that contains carbon, chlorine, and fluorine, produced as a volatile derivative of methane and ethane. A common subclass are the hydrochlorofluorocarbons , which contain hydrogen, as well. They are also commonly known by the DuPont trade name Freon...

s, because of both their global warming potential and their effect on the ozone layer. Greenpeace was one of the leading participants advocating early phase-out of ozone depleting substances in the Montreal Protocol
Montreal Protocol
The Montreal Protocol on Substances That Deplete the Ozone Layer is an international treaty designed to protect the ozone layer by phasing out the production of numerous substances believed to be responsible for ozone depletion...

. In the early 1990s, Greenpeace developed a CFC-free refrigerator technology, "Greenfreeze" for mass production together with the refrigerator industry. United Nations Environment Programme awarded Greenpeace for "outstanding contributions to the protection of the Earth's ozone layer" in 1997. In 2007 one third of the world's total production of refrigerators were based on Greenfreeze technology, with over 200 million units in use.

Currently Greenpeace considers global warming
Global warming
Global warming refers to the rising average temperature of Earth's atmosphere and oceans and its projected continuation. In the last 100 years, Earth's average surface temperature increased by about with about two thirds of the increase occurring over just the last three decades...

 to be the greatest environmental problem facing the Earth. Greenpeace calls for global greenhouse gas
Greenhouse gas
A greenhouse gas is a gas in an atmosphere that absorbs and emits radiation within the thermal infrared range. This process is the fundamental cause of the greenhouse effect. The primary greenhouse gases in the Earth's atmosphere are water vapor, carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, and ozone...

 emissions to peak in 2015 and to decrease as close to zero as possible by 2050. For this Greenpeace calls for the industrialized countries to cut their emissions at least 40% by 2020 (from 1990 levels) and to give substantial funding for developing countries to build a sustainable energy capacity, to adapt to the inevitable consequences of global warming, and to stop deforestation
Deforestation
Deforestation is the removal of a forest or stand of trees where the land is thereafter converted to a nonforest use. Examples of deforestation include conversion of forestland to farms, ranches, or urban use....

 by 2020. Together with EREC
Erec
Sir Erec, the son of King Lac, is a Knight of the Round Table in Arthurian legend. He features in numerous Arthurian tales , but he is most famous as the protagonist in Chrétien de Troyes' first romance, Erec and Enide...

, Greenpeace has formulated a global energy scenario, "Energy [R]evolution", where 80% of the world's total energy is produced with renewables, and the emissions of the energy sector are decreased by over 80% of the 1990 levels by 2050.

Using direct action, Greenpeace has protested several times against coal by occupying coal power plants and blocking coal shipments and mining operations, in places such as New Zealand
New Zealand
New Zealand is an island country in the south-western Pacific Ocean comprising two main landmasses and numerous smaller islands. The country is situated some east of Australia across the Tasman Sea, and roughly south of the Pacific island nations of New Caledonia, Fiji, and Tonga...

, Svalbard
Svalbard
Svalbard is an archipelago in the Arctic, constituting the northernmost part of Norway. It is located north of mainland Europe, midway between mainland Norway and the North Pole. The group of islands range from 74° to 81° north latitude , and from 10° to 35° east longitude. Spitsbergen is the...

, Australia
Australia
Australia , officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area...

, and the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

. Greenpeace is also critical of extracting petroleum from oil sands and has used direct action to block the oil sand operations at Athabasca
Athabasca Oil Sands
The Athabasca oil sands are large deposits of bitumen, or extremely heavy crude oil, located in northeastern Alberta, Canada - roughly centred on the boomtown of Fort McMurray...

, Canada
Canada
Canada is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west, and northward into the Arctic Ocean...

.

The Kingsnorth court case

In October 2007, six Greenpeace protesters were arrested for breaking in to the Kingsnorth power station
Kingsnorth power station
Kingsnorth is a dual-fired coal and oil power station on the Hoo Peninsula at Medway in Kent, South East England. The four-unit station is owned and operated by energy firm E.ON UK, and has a generating capacity of 1,940 megawatts. It is capable of operating on either coal or oil though in practice...

, climbing the 200 metre smokestack, painting the name Gordon
Gordon Brown
James Gordon Brown is a British Labour Party politician who was the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and Leader of the Labour Party from 2007 until 2010. He previously served as Chancellor of the Exchequer in the Labour Government from 1997 to 2007...

 on the chimney, and causing an estimated £30,000 damage. At their subsequent trial they admitted trying to shut the station down, but argued that they were legally justified because they were trying to prevent climate change from causing greater damage to property elsewhere around the world. Evidence was heard from David Cameron
David Cameron
David William Donald Cameron is the current Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, First Lord of the Treasury, Minister for the Civil Service and Leader of the Conservative Party. Cameron represents Witney as its Member of Parliament ....

's environment adviser Zac Goldsmith
Zac Goldsmith
Frank Zacharias Robin "Zac" Goldsmith, MP is an English environmental journalist, entrepreneur and Conservative Party politician. He has been the Member of Parliament for Richmond Park since winning the seat at the 2010 general election.Goldsmith is the middle child of the late financier Sir...

, climate scientist James E. Hansen and an Inuit
Inuit
The Inuit are a group of culturally similar indigenous peoples inhabiting the Arctic regions of Canada , Denmark , Russia and the United States . Inuit means “the people” in the Inuktitut language...

 leader from Greenland, all saying that climate change was already seriously affecting life around the world. The six activists were acquitted. It was the first case where preventing property damage caused by climate change has been used as part of a "lawful excuse" defence in court. Both The Daily Telegraph
The Daily Telegraph
The Daily Telegraph is a daily morning broadsheet newspaper distributed throughout the United Kingdom and internationally. The newspaper was founded by Arthur B...

 and The Guardian
The Guardian
The Guardian, formerly known as The Manchester Guardian , is a British national daily newspaper in the Berliner format...

 described the acquittal as embarrassment to the Brown Ministry
Brown Ministry
Gordon Brown took office as Prime Minister on 27 June 2007 and formed his Government. It ended, upon his resignation, on 11 May 2010. In his inaugural cabinet Brown appointed the UKs first female Home Secretary Jacqui Smith....

. In December 2008 The New York Times
The New York Times
The New York Times is an American daily newspaper founded and continuously published in New York City since 1851. The New York Times has won 106 Pulitzer Prizes, the most of any news organization...

listed the acquittal in its annual list of the most influential ideas of the year.

"Go Beyond Oil"

As part of their stance on the subject re-newable energy, Greenpeace have launched the "Go Beyond Oil" campaign. The campaign is focused on slowing, and eventually ending, the world's consumption of oil; with activist activities taking place against companies that pursue oil drilling as a venture. Much of the activities of the "Go Beyond Oil" campaign have been focused on drilling for oil in the Arctic and areas affected by the Deepwater Horizon
Deepwater Horizon
Deepwater Horizon was an ultra-deepwater, dynamically positioned, semi-submersible offshore oil drilling rig owned by Transocean. Built in 2001 in South Korea by Hyundai Heavy Industries, the rig was commissioned by R&B Falcon, which later became part of Transocean, registered in Majuro, Marshall...

 disaster. The activities of Greenpeace in the arctic have mainly involved the Edinburgh-based oil and gas exploration company, Cairn Energy; and range from protests at the Cairn Energy's headquarters to scalling their oil rigs in an attempt to halt the drilling process.

The "Go Beyond Oil" campaign also involves applying political pressure on the governments who allow oil exploration in their territories; with the group stating that one of the key aims of the "Go Beyond Oil" campaign is to "work to expose the lengths the oil industry is willing to go to squeeze the last barrels out of the ground and put pressure on industry and governments to move beyond oil."

Nuclear power

Greenpeace views nuclear power
Nuclear power
Nuclear power is the use of sustained nuclear fission to generate heat and electricity. Nuclear power plants provide about 6% of the world's energy and 13–14% of the world's electricity, with the U.S., France, and Japan together accounting for about 50% of nuclear generated electricity...

 as a relatively minor industry with major problems, such as environmental damage and risks from uranium mining, nuclear weapons proliferation, and unresolved questions concerning nuclear waste. The organization argues that the potential of nuclear power to mitigate global warming
Mitigation of global warming
Climate change mitigation is action to decrease the intensity of radiative forcing in order to reduce the potential effects of global warming. Mitigation is distinguished from adaptation to global warming, which involves acting to tolerate the effects of global warming...

 is marginal, referring to the IEA
International Energy Agency
The International Energy Agency is a Paris-based autonomous intergovernmental organization established in the framework of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development in 1974 in the wake of the 1973 oil crisis...

 energy scenario where an increase in world's nuclear capacity from 2608 TWh in 2007 to 9857 TWh by 2050 would cut global greenhouse gas emissions less than 5% and at require 32 nuclear reactor units of 1000MW capacity built per year until 2050. According to Greenpeace the slow construction times, construction delays, and hidden costs, all limit the mitigation potential of nuclear power. This makes the IEA scenario technically and financially unrealistic. They also argue that binding massive amounts of investments on nuclear energy would take funding away from more effective solutions. Greenpeace views the construction of Olkiluoto 3 nuclear power plant in Finland
Finland
Finland , officially the Republic of Finland, is a Nordic country situated in the Fennoscandian region of Northern Europe. It is bordered by Sweden in the west, Norway in the north and Russia in the east, while Estonia lies to its south across the Gulf of Finland.Around 5.4 million people reside...

 as an example of the problems on building new nuclear power.
Anti-nuclear advertisement

In 1994, Greenpeace published an anti-nuclear newspaper advert which included a claim that nuclear facilities Sellafield
Sellafield
Sellafield is a nuclear reprocessing site, close to the village of Seascale on the coast of the Irish Sea in Cumbria, England. The site is served by Sellafield railway station. Sellafield is an off-shoot from the original nuclear reactor site at Windscale which is currently undergoing...

 would kill 2000 people in the next 10 years, and an image of a hydrocephalus
Hydrocephalus
Hydrocephalus , also known as "water in the brain," is a medical condition in which there is an abnormal accumulation of cerebrospinal fluid in the ventricles, or cavities, of the brain. This may cause increased intracranial pressure inside the skull and progressive enlargement of the head,...

-affected child said to be a victim of nuclear weapons testing in Kazakhstan
Semipalatinsk Test Site
The Semipalatinsk Test Site was the primary testing venue for the Soviet Union's nuclear weapons. It is located on the steppe in northeast Kazakhstan , south of the valley of the Irtysh River...

. Advertising Standards Authority viewed the claim concerning Sellafield unsubstantiated, and ASA did not accept that the child's condition was caused by radiation. This resulted in banning of the advert. Greenpeace did not admit fault, stating that a Kazakhstan doctor had said that the child's condition was due to nuclear testing. Adam Woolf from Greenpeace also stated that, "fifty years ago there were many experts who would be lined up and swear there was no link between smoking and bad health." The UN has estimated that the nuclear weapon tests in Kazakhstan caused about 100,000 people to suffer over three generations.
Press release blunder

In Philadelphia, in 2006, Greenpeace issued a press release that said "In the twenty years since the Chernobyl
Chernobyl disaster
The Chernobyl disaster was a nuclear accident that occurred on 26 April 1986 at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine , which was under the direct jurisdiction of the central authorities in Moscow...

 tragedy, the world's worst nuclear accident, there have been nearly [FILL IN ALARMIST AND ARMAGEDDONIST FACTOID HERE]," The final report warned of plane crashes and reactor meltdowns. According to a Greenpeace spokesman, the memo was a joke that was accidentally released.
EDF spying conviction

In 2011, a French court fined Électricité de France
Électricité de France
Électricité de France S.A. is the second largest French utility company. Headquartered in Paris, France, with €65.2 billion in revenues in 2010, EDF operates a diverse portfolio of 120,000+ megawatts of generation capacity in Europe, Latin America, Asia, the Middle East and Africa.EDF is one of...

 (EDF) €1.5m and jailed two senior employees for spying on Greenpeace, including hacking into Greenpeace's computer systems. Greenpeace was awarded €500,000 in damages. Although EDF claimed that a security firm had only been employed to monitor Greenpeace, the court disagreed, jailing the head and deputy head of EDF's nuclear security operation for three years each. Two employees of the security firm, Kargus, run by a former member of France's secret services, received sentences of three and two years respectively.

Forest campaign

Greenpeace aims at protecting intact primary forests from deforestation
Deforestation
Deforestation is the removal of a forest or stand of trees where the land is thereafter converted to a nonforest use. Examples of deforestation include conversion of forestland to farms, ranches, or urban use....

 and degradation with the target of zero deforestation by 2020. Greenpeace has accused several corporations, such as Unilever
Unilever
Unilever is a British-Dutch multinational corporation that owns many of the world's consumer product brands in foods, beverages, cleaning agents and personal care products....

, Nike
Nike, Inc.
Nike, Inc. is a major publicly traded sportswear and equipment supplier based in the United States. The company is headquartered near Beaverton, Oregon, which is part of the Portland metropolitan area...

, and McDonald's
McDonald's
McDonald's Corporation is the world's largest chain of hamburger fast food restaurants, serving around 64 million customers daily in 119 countries. Headquartered in the United States, the company began in 1940 as a barbecue restaurant operated by the eponymous Richard and Maurice McDonald; in 1948...

 of having links to the deforestation of the tropical rainforests, resulting in policy changes in several of the companies under criticism. Greenpeace, together with other environmental NGOs, also campaigned for ten years for the EU to ban import of illegal timber. The EU decided to ban illegal timber on July 2010. As deforestation contributes to global warming, Greenpeace has demanded that REDD
Redd
Redd is a Turkish rock band established in 1996 by tenor opera singer Doğan Duru and guitarist Berke Hatipoğlu under the name Ten. They used to play at bars until they set up their own studio in 2004. Their first album, entitled "50/50", produced by Levent Büyük was published a year later by...

 (Reduced Emission from Deforestation and Forest Degradation) should be included in the climate treaty following the Kyoto treaty.

Removal of ancient tree

In June 1995, Greenpeace took a trunk of a tree from the forests of the proposed national park
National park
A national park is a reserve of natural, semi-natural, or developed land that a sovereign state declares or owns. Although individual nations designate their own national parks differently A national park is a reserve of natural, semi-natural, or developed land that a sovereign state declares or...

 of Koitajoki in Ilomantsi
Ilomantsi
Ilomantsi is municipality and a village of Finland.It is located in the province of Eastern Finland and is part of the North Karelia region. The municipality has a population of and covers an area of of which is water. The population density is...

, Finland and put it on display at exhibitions held in Austria and Germany. Greenpeace said in a press conference that the tree was originally from a logged area in the ancient forest which was supposed to be protected. Metsähallitus
Metsähallitus
Metsähallitus , Forststyrelsen , "Administration of Forests," is a state-owned enterprise in Finland. The tasks of Metsähallitus are to manage most of the protected areas of Finland and to supply wood to the country's forest industry. Metsähallitus employs approximately 3,000 people...

 accused Greenpeace of theft and said that the tree was from a normal forest and had been left standing because of its old age. Metsähallitus also said that the tree had actually crashed over a road during a storm. The incident received publicity in Finland, for example in the large newspapers Helsingin Sanomat
Helsingin Sanomat
Helsingin Sanomat is the largest subscription newspaper in Finland and the Nordic countries, owned by Sanoma. Except after certain holidays, it is published daily. In 2008, its daily circulation was 412,421 on weekdays and 468,505 on Sundays...

and Ilta-Sanomat
Ilta-Sanomat
Ilta-Sanomat is one of Finland's two prominent tabloid size evening dailys and the second largest newspaper in the country...

. Greenpeace replied that the tree had fallen down because of the protective forest around it had been clearcut, and that they wanted to highlight the fate of old forests in general, not the fate of one particular tree. Greenpeace also highlighted that Metsähallitus admitted the value of the forest afterwards as Metsähallitus currently refers to Koitajoki as a distinctive area because of its old growth forests.

The 'Tokyo Two'

In 2008, two Greenpeace anti-whaling activists, Junichi Sato and Toru Suzuki, stole a case of whale meat
Whale meat
Whale meat is the flesh of whales used for consumption by humans or other animals. It is prepared in various ways, and is historically part of the diet and cuisine of various communities that live near an ocean, including those of Japan, Norway, Iceland, and the Arctic...

 from a delivery depot in Aomori prefecture, Japan. Their intention was to expose what they considered embezzlement of the meat collected during whale hunts. After a brief investigation of their allegations was ended, Sato and Suzuki were arrested and charged with theft and trespass. Amnesty International
Amnesty International
Amnesty International is an international non-governmental organisation whose stated mission is "to conduct research and generate action to prevent and end grave abuses of human rights, and to demand justice for those whose rights have been violated."Following a publication of Peter Benenson's...

 said that the arrests and following raids on Greenpeace Japan office and homes of five of Greenpeace staff members were aimed at intimidating activists and non-governmental organizations. They were convicted of theft and trespass in September 2010 by the Aomori district court.

Genetically modified organisms (GMOs)

Greenpeace has also supported the rejection of GM food from the US in famine-stricken Zambia as long as supplies of non-genetically engineered grain exist, stating that the US "should follow in the European Union's footsteps and allow aid recipients to choose their food aid, buying it locally if they wish. This practise can stimulate developing economies and creates more robust food security", adding that, "if Africans truly have no other alternative, the controversial GE maize should be milled so it can't be planted. It was this condition that allowed Zambia's neighbours Zimbabwe and Malawi to accept it." After Zambia banned all GM food aid, the former agricultural minister of Zambia criticized, "how the various international NGOs that have spoken approvingly of the government's action will square the body count with their various consciences." Concerning the decision of Zambia, Greenpeace has stated that, "it was obvious to us that if no non-GM aid was being offered then they should absolutely accept GM food aid. But the Zambian government decided to refuse the GM food. We offered our opinion to the Zambian government and, as many governments do, they disregarded our advice."

Greenpeace on golden rice

Greenpeace opposes the planned use of golden rice
Golden rice
Golden rice is a variety of Oryza sativa rice produced through genetic engineering to biosynthesize beta-carotene, a precursor of pro-vitamin A in the edible parts of rice...

, a variety of Oryza sativa
Oryza sativa
Oryza sativa, commonly known as Asian rice, is the plant species most commonly referred to in English as rice. Oryza sativa is the cereal with the smallest genome, consisting of just 430Mb across 12 chromosomes...

rice
Rice
Rice is the seed of the monocot plants Oryza sativa or Oryza glaberrima . As a cereal grain, it is the most important staple food for a large part of the world's human population, especially in East Asia, Southeast Asia, South Asia, the Middle East, and the West Indies...

 produced through genetic engineering
Genetic engineering
Genetic engineering, also called genetic modification, is the direct human manipulation of an organism's genome using modern DNA technology. It involves the introduction of foreign DNA or synthetic genes into the organism of interest...

 to biosynthesize
Biosynthesis
Biosynthesis is an enzyme-catalyzed process in cells of living organisms by which substrates are converted to more complex products. The biosynthesis process often consists of several enzymatic steps in which the product of one step is used as substrate in the following step...

 beta-carotene
Beta-carotene
β-Carotene is a strongly-coloured red-orange pigment abundant in plants and fruits. It is an organic compound and chemically is classified as a hydrocarbon and specifically as a terpenoid , reflecting its derivation from isoprene units...

, a precursor of pro-vitamin A
Retinol
Retinol is one of the animal forms of vitamin A. It is a diterpenoid and an alcohol. It is convertible to other forms of vitamin A, and the retinyl ester derivative of the alcohol serves as the storage form of the vitamin in animals....

 in the edible parts of rice. According to Greenpeace, golden rice has not managed to do anything about malnutrition for 10 years during which alternative methods are already tackling malnutrition. The alternative proposed by Greenpeace is to discourage mono-cropping
Mono-cropping
Monocropping is the high-yield agricultural practice of growing a single crop year after year on the same land, in the absence rotation through other crops...

 and to increase production of crops which are naturally nutrient-rich (containing other nutrients not found in golden rice in addition to beta-carotene
Carotene
The term carotene is used for several related unsaturated hydrocarbon substances having the formula C40Hx, which are synthesized by plants but cannot be made by animals. Carotene is an orange photosynthetic pigment important for photosynthesis. Carotenes are all coloured to the human eye...

). Greenpeace argues that resources should be spent on programs that are already working and helping to relieve malnutrition. The Golden Rice Project acknowledges that,
"While the most desirable option is a varied and sufficient diet, this goal is not always achievable, at least not in the short term."

The renewal of these concerns coincided with the publication of a paper in the journal Nature
Nature (journal)
Nature, first published on 4 November 1869, is ranked the world's most cited interdisciplinary scientific journal by the Science Edition of the 2010 Journal Citation Reports...

about a version of golden rice with much higher levels of beta carotene. This "golden rice 2" was developed and patented by Syngenta
Syngenta
Syngenta AG is a large global Swiss agribusiness company which notably markets seeds and pesticides. Syngenta is involved in biotechnology and genomic research. The company is a leader in crop protection, and ranks third in total sales in the commercial agricultural seeds market. Sales in 2010 were...

, which provoked Greenpeace to renew its allegation that the project is driven by profit motives. Dr. C.S. Prakash, who is the director of the Center for Plant Biotechnology Research at Tuskegee University
Tuskegee University
Tuskegee University is a private, historically black university located in Tuskegee, Alabama, United States. It is a member school of the Thurgood Marshall Scholarship Fund...

 and is president of the AgBioWorld Foundation expressed the opinion that, "[c]ritics condemned biotechnology as something that is purely for profit, that is being pursued only in the West
Western world
The Western world, also known as the West and the Occident , is a term referring to the countries of Western Europe , the countries of the Americas, as well all countries of Northern and Central Europe, Australia and New Zealand...

, and with no benefits to the consumer. Golden Rice proves them wrong, so they need to discredit it any way they can."

Although Greenpeace had admitted efficiency to be its primary concern, as early as 2001, statements from March and April 2005 also continued to express concern over human health and environmental safety Greenpeace has opposed releasing golden rice to fields as opposed to farming in greenhouses, which according to golden rice developer Ingo Potrykus
Ingo Potrykus
Ingo Potrykus was full Professor of Plant Sciences, specifically of Biotechnology of Plants, at the Institute of Plant Sciences of the ETH Zurich from June 1, 1987 until his retirement on April 1, 1999. His research group applied gene-technology to contribute to food security in developing countries...

, limits the amount of material needed for human safety testing.

Toxics

In July 2011, Greenpeace released its Dirty Laundry report accusing some of the world's top sportswear
Sportswear
Sportswear or activewear is clothing, including footwear, worn for sport or physical exercise. Sport-specific clothing is worn for most sports and physical exercise, for practical, comfort or safety reasons....

 brands of releasing toxic waste
Toxic waste
Toxic waste is waste material that can cause death or injury to living creatures. It spreads quite easily and can contaminate lakes and rivers. The term is often used interchangeably with “hazardous waste”, or discarded material that can pose a long-term risk to health or environment.Toxic waste...

 into China's rivers. The report profiles the problem of water pollution
Water pollution
Water pollution is the contamination of water bodies . Water pollution occurs when pollutants are discharged directly or indirectly into water bodies without adequate treatment to remove harmful compounds....

 resulting from the release of toxic chemicals associated with the country's textile industry
Textile industry
The textile industry is primarily concerned with the production of yarn, and cloth and the subsequent design or manufacture of clothing and their distribution. The raw material may be natural, or synthetic using products of the chemical industry....

. Investigations focused on wastewater
Wastewater
Wastewater is any water that has been adversely affected in quality by anthropogenic influence. It comprises liquid waste discharged by domestic residences, commercial properties, industry, and/or agriculture and can encompass a wide range of potential contaminants and concentrations...

 discharges from two facilities in China; one belonging to the Youngor Group
Youngor Group
Youngor Group Company Limited is a private textiles and clothing enterprise in Ningbo, Zhejiang, China. It is engaged in designing, manufacturing, selling clothing products with its "Youngor" Brand for gentleman clothing...

 located on the Yangtze River Delta
Yangtze River Delta
The Yangtze River Delta, Yangtze Delta or YRD, also called Yangzi, or Chang Jiang Delta, Rive Chang Delta Tai Lake Region or the Golden Triangle of the Yangtze, generally comprises the triangular-shaped territory of Wu-speaking Shanghai, southern Jiangsu province and northern Zhejiang province of...

 and the other to Well Dyeing Factory Ltd. located on a tributary of the Pearl River Delta
Pearl River Delta
The Pearl River Delta , Zhujiang Delta or Zhusanjiao in Guangdong province, People's Republic of China is the low-lying area surrounding the Pearl River estuary where the Pearl River flows into the South China Sea...

. Scientific analysis of samples from both facilities revealed the presence of hazardous and persistent hormone disruptor chemicals, including alkylphenols, perfluorinated compounds and perfluorooctane sulfonate.

The report goes on to assert that the Youngor Group and Well Dyeing Factory Ltd. - the two companies behind the facilities - have commercial relationships with a range of major clothing brands, including Abercrombie & Fitch
Abercrombie & Fitch
Abercrombie & Fitch is an American retailer that focuses on casual wear for consumers aged 18 to 22. It has over 300 locations in the United States, and is expanding internationally....

, Adidas
Adidas
Adidas AG is a German sports apparel manufacturer and parent company of the Adidas Group, which consists of the Reebok sportswear company, TaylorMade-Adidas golf company , and Rockport...

, Bauer Hockey
Bauer Hockey
Bauer Performance Sports Ltd. is one of the leading manufacturers of ice hockey equipment, fitness and recreational skates, and apparel. Bauer produces helmets, gloves, sticks, skates, shin guards, pants, shoulder pads, elbow pads, as well as goalie equipment...

, Calvin Klein
Calvin Klein
Calvin Richard Klein is an American fashion designer who launched the company that would later become Calvin Klein Inc. in 1968. In addition to clothing, Klein has also given his name to a range of perfumes, watches, and jewelry....

, Converse (shoe company), Cortefiel
Cortefiel
Grupo Cortefiel is the second largest apparel retailer in Spain through Cortefiel , Springfield and Women's Secret . The Iberian Peninsula accounts for more than 85% of the revenues of the group...

, H&M
H&M
H & M Hennes & Mauritz AB is a Swedish retail-clothing company, known for its fast-fashion clothing offerings for women, men, teenagers and children....

, Lacoste, Li Ning (company), Metersbonwe Group
Metersbonwe Group
Metersbonwe Group , marketed as Meters/bonwe is China's leading casualwear apparel company. Metersbonwe opened their first store in Wenzhou on April 22nd, 1995. By the beginning of 2007, the company operates around 1,800 stores across China and has over 5,000 employees...

, Nike
Nike, Inc.
Nike, Inc. is a major publicly traded sportswear and equipment supplier based in the United States. The company is headquartered near Beaverton, Oregon, which is part of the Portland metropolitan area...

, Phillips-Van Heusen and Puma AG
PUMA AG
Puma SE, officially branded as PUMA, is a major German multinational company that produces high-end athletic shoes, lifestyle footwear and other sportswear. Formed in 1924 as Gebrüder Dassler Schuhfabrik by Adolf and Rudolf Dassler, relationships between the two brothers deteriorated until the two...

.

Governance

Greenpeace consists of Greenpeace International (officially Stichting Greenpeace Council) based in Amsterdam
Amsterdam
Amsterdam is the largest city and the capital of the Netherlands. The current position of Amsterdam as capital city of the Kingdom of the Netherlands is governed by the constitution of August 24, 1815 and its successors. Amsterdam has a population of 783,364 within city limits, an urban population...

, Netherlands
Netherlands
The Netherlands is a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, located mainly in North-West Europe and with several islands in the Caribbean. Mainland Netherlands borders the North Sea to the north and west, Belgium to the south, and Germany to the east, and shares maritime borders...

, and 28 regional offices operating in 45 countries. The regional offices work largely autonomously under the supervision of Greenpeace International. The executive director of Greenpeace is elected by the board members of Greenpeace International. The current director of Greenpeace International is Kumi Naidoo
Kumi Naidoo
Kumi Naidoo, born 1965, is a South African human rights activist and the International Executive Director of international environmentalist group, Greenpeace. He is the first African to head the organisation....

 and the current Chair of the Board is Lalita Ramdas. Greenpeace has a staff of 2,400 and 15,000 volunteers globally.

Each regional office is led by a regional executive director elected by the regional board of directors. The regional boards also appoint a trustee to The Greenpeace International Annual General Meeting, where the trustees elect or remove the board of directors of Greenpeace International. The role of the annual general meeting is also to discuss and decide the overall principles and strategically important issues for Greenpeace in collaboration with the trustees of regional offices and Greenpeace International board of directors.

Funding

Greenpeace receives its funding from individual supporters and foundations. Greenpeace screens all major donations in order to ensure it does not receive unwanted donations. The organization does not accept money from governments, intergovernmental organizations, political parties or corporations in order to avoid their influence. Donations from foundations which are funded by political parties or receive most of their funding from governments or intergovernmental organizations are rejected. Foundation donations are also rejected if the foundations attach unreasonable conditions, restrictions or constraints on Greenpeace activities or if the donation would compromise the independence and aims of Greenpeace. Since in the mid-1990s the number of supporters started to decrease, Greenpeace pioneered the use of face-to-face fundraising
Street fundraiser
Street fundraising consists of various ways of asking for donations on behalf of a charity. Those asking for donations may be paid employees of the charity , or they may be volunteers....

 where fundraisers actively seek new supporters at public places, subscribing them for a monthly direct debit donation. In 2008, most of the €202.5 million received by the organization was donated by about 2.6 million regular supporters, mainly from Europe.

In September 2003, the Public Interest Watch
Public Interest Watch
Public Interest Watch was established in September 2002 by Mike Hardiman. The PIW website states that the group was created "in response to the growing misuse of charitable funds by nonprofit organizations and the lack of effort by government agencies to deal with the problem." In March 2006 the...

 (PIW) complained to the Internal Revenue Service
Internal Revenue Service
The Internal Revenue Service is the revenue service of the United States federal government. The agency is a bureau of the Department of the Treasury, and is under the immediate direction of the Commissioner of Internal Revenue...

, claiming that Greenpeace USA tax returns were inaccurate and in violation of the law. PIW charged that Greenpeace was using non-profit donations for advocacy instead of charity and educational purposes. PIW asked the IRS to investigate the complaint. Greenpeace rejected the accusations and challenged PIW to disclose its funders, a request rejected by then-Executive Director of PIW, Mike Hardiman, because PIW does not have 501c3 tax exempt status like Greenpeace does in the U.S. The IRS conducted an extensive review and concluded in December 2005 that Greenpeace USA continued to qualify for its tax-exempt status. In March 2006 The Wall Street Journal
The Wall Street Journal
The Wall Street Journal is an American English-language international daily newspaper. It is published in New York City by Dow Jones & Company, a division of News Corporation, along with the Asian and European editions of the Journal....

reported that PIW had been funded by ExxonMobil
ExxonMobil
Exxon Mobil Corporation or ExxonMobil, is an American multinational oil and gas corporation. It is a direct descendant of John D. Rockefeller's Standard Oil company, and was formed on November 30, 1999, by the merger of Exxon and Mobil. Its headquarters are in Irving, Texas...

 prior to PIW's request to investigate Greenpeace.

Ships

Since Greenpeace was founded, seagoing ships have played a vital role in its campaigns. Once the Rainbow Warrior III
Rainbow Warrior (2011)
The Rainbow Warrior is a purpose-built motor-assisted sailing yacht owned and operated by Greenpeace and intended for use in their activities such as environmental protests and scientific excursions...

 is completed (expected in 2011), the group will have three ocean-going ships, the Esperanza, Arctic Sunrise and Rainbow Warrior III.

The first Rainbow Warrior

In 1978, Greenpeace launched the original Rainbow Warrior, a 40 metres (131.2 ft), former fishing trawler named for the Cree
Cree
The Cree are one of the largest groups of First Nations / Native Americans in North America, with 200,000 members living in Canada. In Canada, the major proportion of Cree live north and west of Lake Superior, in Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta and the Northwest Territories, although...

 legend that inspired early activist Robert Hunter
Robert Hunter (journalist)
Robert Lorne Hunter was a Canadian environmentalist, journalist, author and politician. A member of the Don't Make a Wave Committee in 1969 with Dorothy and Irving Stowe, Marie and Jim Bohlen, and Ben and Dorothy Metcalfe...

 on the first voyage to Amchitka. Greenpeace purchased the Rainbow Warrior (originally launched as the Sir William Hardy in 1955) at a cost of £40,000. Volunteers restored and refitted it over a period of four months. First deployed to disrupt the hunt of the Iceland
Iceland
Iceland , described as the Republic of Iceland, is a Nordic and European island country in the North Atlantic Ocean, on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. Iceland also refers to the main island of the country, which contains almost all the population and almost all the land area. The country has a population...

ic whaling fleet, the Rainbow Warrior would quickly become a mainstay of Greenpeace campaigns. Between 1978 and 1985, crew members also engaged in direct action against the ocean-dumping of toxic and radioactive waste, the Grey Seal
Grey Seal
The grey seal is found on both shores of the North Atlantic Ocean. It is a large seal of the family Phocidae or "true seals". It is the only species classified in the genus Halichoerus...

 hunt in Orkney and nuclear testing in the Pacific. Japan's Fisheries Agency has labeled Greenpeace ships as "anti-whaling
Anti-whaling
Anti-whaling refers to actions taken by those who seek to end whaling in various forms, whether locally or globally in the pursuit of marine conservation. Such activism is often a response to specific conflicts with pro-whaling countries and organizations that practice commercial whaling and/or...

 vessels" and "environmental terrorists". In May 1985, the vessel was instrumental for 'Operation Exodus', the evacuation of about 300 Rongelap Atoll
Rongelap Atoll
Rongelap Atoll or Namorik Atoll is a coral atoll of 61 islands in the Pacific Ocean, and forms a legislative district of the Ralik Chain of the Marshall Islands. Its total land area is only , but it encloses a lagoon with an area of...

 islanders whose home had been contaminated with nuclear fallout from a US nuclear test two decades ago which had never been cleaned up and was still having severe health effects on the locals.

Later in 1985 the Rainbow Warrior was to lead a flotilla of protest vessels into the waters surrounding Moruroa
Moruroa
Moruroa , also historically known as Aopuni, is an atoll which forms part of the Tuamotu Archipelago in French Polynesia in the southern Pacific Ocean...

 atoll, site of French nuclear testing. The sinking of the Rainbow Warrior
Sinking of the Rainbow Warrior
The sinking of the Rainbow Warrior, codenamed Opération Satanique, was an operation by the "action" branch of the French foreign intelligence services, the Direction Générale de la Sécurité Extérieure , carried out on July 10, 1985...

 occurred when the French government secretly bombed the ship in Auckland
Auckland
The Auckland metropolitan area , in the North Island of New Zealand, is the largest and most populous urban area in the country with residents, percent of the country's population. Auckland also has the largest Polynesian population of any city in the world...

 harbour on orders from François Mitterrand
François Mitterrand
François Maurice Adrien Marie Mitterrand was the 21st President of the French Republic and ex officio Co-Prince of Andorra, serving from 1981 until 1995. He is the longest-serving President of France and, as leader of the Socialist Party, the only figure from the left so far elected President...

 himself. This killed Dutch freelance photographer Fernando Pereira
Fernando Pereira
Fernando Pereira was a freelance Dutch photographer, of Portuguese origin, who drowned when French intelligence used two underwater mines to sink the ship Rainbow Warrior, owned by the environmental organisation Greenpeace on July 10, 1985 .The bombing of the boat had been designed to make the ship...

, who thought it was safe to enter the boat to get his photographic material after a first small explosion, but drowned as a result of a second, larger explosion. The attack was a public relations disaster for France after it was quickly exposed by the New Zealand police. The French Government in 1987 agreed to pay New Zealand compensation of NZ$
New Zealand dollar
The New Zealand dollar is the currency of New Zealand. It also circulates in the Cook Islands , Niue, Tokelau, and the Pitcairn Islands. It is divided into 100 cents....

13 million and formally apologised for the bombing. The French Government also paid
French franc
The franc was a currency of France. Along with the Spanish peseta, it was also a de facto currency used in Andorra . Between 1360 and 1641, it was the name of coins worth 1 livre tournois and it remained in common parlance as a term for this amount of money...

2.3 million compensation to the family of the photographer.

The second Rainbow Warrior

In 1989 Greenpeace commissioned a replacement vessel, also named the Rainbow Warrior
Rainbow Warrior (1989)
The Rainbow Warrior is a three-masted schooner in service with the environmental protection organization Greenpeace. She was built from the hull of the deep sea fishing ship Ross Kashmir , which had been built in Selby, North Yorkshire and launched in 1957...

 (also referred as Rainbow Warrior II), which was retired from service on the 16th of August 2011 to be replaced by the third Rainbow Warrior. In 2005 the Rainbow Warrior II ran aground on and damaged the Tubbataha Reef
Tubbataha Reef
Tubbataha Reef is an atoll coral reef located in the Sulu Sea of the Philippines. It is a marine sanctuary protected as Tubbataha Reef National Marine Park...

 in the Philippines while inspecting the reef for coral bleaching
Coral bleaching
Coral bleaching is the loss of intracellular endosymbionts through either expulsion or loss of algal pigmentation.The corals that form the structure of the great reef ecosystems of tropical seas depend upon a symbiotic relationship with unicellular flagellate protozoa, called zooxanthellae, that...

. Greenpeace was fined US$
United States dollar
The United States dollar , also referred to as the American dollar, is the official currency of the United States of America. It is divided into 100 smaller units called cents or pennies....

7,000 for damaging the reef and agreed to pay the fine saying they felt responsible for the damage, although Greenpeace stated that the Philippines government had given it outdated charts. The park manager of Tubbataha appreciated the quick action Greenpeace took to assess the damage to the reef.
.

Other vessels

Along with the Rainbow Warriors, Greenpeace has had several other ships in its service: MV Sirius
MV Sirius
The MV Sirius is a Greenpeace ship named after the star Sirius. The Sirius was built with modern specifications at the Boele shipyard in the Netherlands in 1950 as one of 7 pilot vessels. The ship, originally owned by the Royal Dutch Navy, was sold to Greenpeace during 1981 while in dry dock. The...

, MV Solo
MV Solo
The MV Solo was a Greenpeace ship from 1990 to 1995, originally built in 1977 as an ocean tug called the Smit Houston. Greenpeace updated the ship with a helipad as well as veterinary and laboratory facilities. In 1995 she was chartered by a company working with the Dutch Ministry of Transport,...

, MV Greenpeace
MV Greenpeace
The MV Greenpeace was a Greenpeace ship built in 1959 as an ocean going tug/salvage vessel. She was purchased by Greenpeace in 1977 and refitted with modern equipment before being relaunched in 1986. She took over from the first Rainbow Warrior, which had been sunk in 1985 by French commandos...

, MV Arctic Sunrise
MV Arctic Sunrise
The MY Arctic Sunrise is an icebreaker operated by Greenpeace. The vessel was built in 1975 and has a gross tonnage of 949 tonnes, a length of 50 m and a maximum speed of...

 and MV Esperanza
MV Esperanza
MY Esperanza is a ship operated by Greenpeace. Previous to being a Greenpeace ship it was a fire-fighter owned by the Russian Navy, built in 1984. It was recommissioned in 2000 and launched in 2002 after being named Esperanza by visitors to the Greenpeace website. It had undergone a major refit...

, the last two being in service today.

Reactions and responses to Greenpeace activities

Lawsuits have been filed against Greenpeace for lost profits, reputation damage and "sailor mongering
Sailormongering
Sailormongering is the practice of waylaying ships coming into port and luring sailors away from their posts with prostitutes.-Greenpeace charge:...

". In 2004 it was revealed that the Australian government was willing to offer a subsidy to Southern Pacific Petroleum on the condition that the oil company would take legal action against Greenpeace, which had campaigned against the Stuart Oil Shale Project
Stuart Oil Shale Project
The Stuart Oil Shale Project was an oil shale development project in Australia near Gladstone, Queensland. It was Australia's first major attempt since the 1950s to restart commercial use of oil shale...

.

Some corporations, such as Royal Dutch Shell
Royal Dutch Shell
Royal Dutch Shell plc , commonly known as Shell, is a global oil and gas company headquartered in The Hague, Netherlands and with its registered office in London, United Kingdom. It is the fifth-largest company in the world according to a composite measure by Forbes magazine and one of the six...

, BP
BP
BP p.l.c. is a global oil and gas company headquartered in London, United Kingdom. It is the third-largest energy company and fourth-largest company in the world measured by revenues and one of the six oil and gas "supermajors"...

 and Électricité de France
Électricité de France
Électricité de France S.A. is the second largest French utility company. Headquartered in Paris, France, with €65.2 billion in revenues in 2010, EDF operates a diverse portfolio of 120,000+ megawatts of generation capacity in Europe, Latin America, Asia, the Middle East and Africa.EDF is one of...

 have reacted to Greenpeace campaigns by spying on Greenpeace activities and infiltrating Greenpeace offices. Greenpeace activists have also been targets of phone tapping, death threats, violence and even state terrorism in the case of bombing of the Rainbow Warrior.

Criticism

Early Greenpeace member Canadian Ecologist Patrick Moore
Patrick Moore (environmentalist)
Patrick Moore is a former environmental activist, known as one of the early members of Greenpeace, in which he was an activist from 1971 to 1986...

 left the organization in 1986 when it, according to Moore, decided to support a universal ban on chlorine
Chlorine
Chlorine is the chemical element with atomic number 17 and symbol Cl. It is the second lightest halogen, found in the periodic table in group 17. The element forms diatomic molecules under standard conditions, called dichlorine...

 in drinking water. Moore has argued that Greenpeace today is motivated by politics rather than science and that none of his "fellow directors had any formal science education". Bruce Cox, Director of Greenpeace Canada, responded that Greenpeace has never demanded a universal chlorine ban and that Greenpeace does not oppose use of chlorine in drinking water or in pharmaceutical uses, adding that "Mr. Moore is alone in his recollection of a fight over chlorine and/or use of science as his reason for leaving Greenpeace." Paul Watson
Paul Watson
Paul Watson is a Canadian animal rights and environmental activist, who founded and is president of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, a direct action group devoted to marine conservation....

, an early member of Greenpeace has said that Moore "uses his status as a so-called co-founder of Greenpeace to give credibility to his accusations. I am also a co-founder of Greenpeace and I have known Patrick Moore for 35 years.[...] Moore makes accusations that have no basis in fact".

A French journalist under the pen name Olivier Vermont wrote in his book La Face cachée de Greenpeace ("The Hidden Face of Greenpeace") that he had joined Greenpeace France and had worked there as a secretary. According to Vermont he found misconduct, and continued to find it, from Amsterdam to the International office. Vermont said he found classified documents according to which half of the organization's € 180 million revenue was used for the organization's salaries and structure. He also accused Greenpeace of having unofficial agreements with polluting companies where the companies paid Greenpeace to keep them from attacking the company's image. Animal protection magazine Animal People reported in March 1997 that Greenpeace France and Greenpeace International had sued Olivier Vermont and his publisher Albin Michel for issuing "defamatory statements, untruths, distortions of the facts and absurd allegations".

Writing in Cosmos
Cosmos (magazine)
Cosmos is an Australian popular science magazine that is published six times a year. It is subtitled "the science of everything" and is described as "a magazine of ideas, science, society and the future"....

, journalist Wilson da Silva
Wilson da Silva
Wilson da Silva is an Australian science journalist and editor who has worked in magazines, newswires, newspapers, television and online. He is editor and co-founder of Cosmos, Australia's #1 science magazine, and Cosmos Online, the country's #1 science news website.He has been an on-air science...

 reacted to Greenpeace's destruction of a genetically modified wheat crop in Ginninderra as another sign that the organization has "lost its way" and had degenerated into a "sad, dogmatic, reactionary phalanx of anti-science zealots who care not for evidence, but for publicity".

Greenpeace Chile

In Chile, the organization is affiliated as "Greenpeace Chile" was founded in 1981 and is a government recognized NGO there.

Greenpeace East Asia

Greenpeace East Asia's first China office was opened in Hong Kong in 1997. Headquartered in Beijing, the office now campaigns in Mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and South Korea.

See also

  • European Renewable Energy Council
    European Renewable Energy Council
    The European Renewable Energy Council was founded in 2000 by the European renewable energy industry, trade and research associations. EREC is located in the Renewable Energy House in Brussels, a monument protected building with 100% renewable energy supply for heating and cooling.EREC acts as a...

  • Fund for Wild Nature
    Fund for Wild Nature
    The Fund For Wild Nature is an environmental organization that gives financial support to grassroot projects and organizations that work for the protection of biodiversity and wilderness. The Fund works exclusively for projects in countries of North America. It has no endowment and is supported...

  • Civil disobedience
    Civil disobedience
    Civil disobedience is the active, professed refusal to obey certain laws, demands, and commands of a government, or of an occupying international power. Civil disobedience is commonly, though not always, defined as being nonviolent resistance. It is one form of civil resistance...

  • World Wide Fund for Nature
    World Wide Fund for Nature
    The World Wide Fund for Nature is an international non-governmental organization working on issues regarding the conservation, research and restoration of the environment, formerly named the World Wildlife Fund, which remains its official name in Canada and the United States...


Further reading

  • Hunter, Robert and McTaggart, David, Greenpeace III: Journey into the Bomb (London: William Collins Sons & Co., 1978). ISBN 0 211885 8
  • Hunter, Robert Warriors of the Rainbow: A Chronicle of the Greenpeace Movement (New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1979). ISBN 0-03-043736-9
  • Michael King, Death of the Rainbow Warrior (Penguin Books, 1986). ISBN 0-14-009738-4
  • John McCormick, The Global Environmental Movement (John Wiley, 1995)
  • David Robie, Eyes of Fire: The Last Voyage of the Rainbow Warrior (Philadelphia: New Society Press, 1987). ISBN 0-86571-114-3
  • Michael Brown and John May, The Greenpeace Story (1989; London and New York: Dorling Kindersley, Inc., 1991). ISBN 1-879431-02-5
  • Rex Weyler (2004), Greenpeace: How a Group of Ecologists, Journalists and Visionaries Changed the World, Rodale ISBN 594861064
  • Kieran Mulvaney and Mark Warford (1996): Witness: Twenty-Five Years on the Environmental Front Line, Andre Deutsch.


External links

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