Eco-terrorism, also called ecoterrorism or green terrorism, is
terrorismcommitted in support of ecological, environmental, or animal rightscauses. The word is a neologismand its application is contested.
Eco-terrorism is defined by the FBI as "the use or threatened use of violence of a criminal nature against innocent victims or property by an environmentally-oriented, subnational group for environmental-political reasons, or aimed at an audience beyond the target, often of a symbolic nature." [ [http://www.fbi.gov/congress/congress02/jarboe021202.htm Federal Bureau of Investigation - Congressional Testimony] ] This characterization of property destruction as "violence against property" rather than as vandalism is highly contentious. Within this article, however, acts labeled eco-terrorism by law enforcement are considered, whether or not they involve violence against persons or living things.
The FBI has credited to eco-terrorism 200 million dollars in property damage from 2003 and 2008, and a majority of states within the USA have introduced laws aimed at eco-terrorism. [ [http://www.styleweekly.com/article.asp?idarticle=16293 "Style Weekly" article.] ]
Application of the term
The acts described by law enforcement organizations as eco-terrorism vary widely. Many involve sabotage of equipment and unmanned facilities using
arson. Tree spiking, the embedding of metal spikes in trees, is sometimes described as eco-terrorism. In the case of Peter Daniel Young, the release of minks was called "animal enterprise terrorism."
civil disobediencemay be described as eco-terrorism. In 2003, a conservative Texas legislative reform group, the American Legislative Exchange Council(ALEC), proposed the "Animal and Ecological Terrorism Act" which defined an "animal rights or ecological terrorist organization" as "two or more persons organized for the purpose of supporting any politically motivated activity intended to obstruct or deter any person from participating in an activity involving animals or an activity involving natural resources." [ [http://www.alec.org/news/press-releases/press-releases-2003/september/alec-offers-legislation-to-fight-domestic-terror-by-animal-rights-and-eco-extremist-groups.html ALEC - Animal and Ecological Terrorism Act] ] The legislation has not been enacted.
Eco-terrorism has also been used, rhetorically, to describe ecological destruction.
Paul Watson, the founder of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, has presented his own definition: "an act that terrorizes other species and threatens the ecological systems of the planet". [ [http://www.seashepherd.org/editorials/editorial_070210_1.html "Dealing with the Hypocrisy of Human Perceptions" - Commentary by Paul Watson] ] Canadian environmentalist David Suzukidescribed the former Prime Minister of Australia, John Howard, as an "eco-terrorist" for failing to abide by the Kyoto Protocolon climate change. [http://smh.com.au/articles/2005/05/25/1116950760760.html?oneclick=true PM dubbed eco-terrorist] ] Environmentalists have accused corporations ranging from ExxonMobil[ [http://www.infoshop.org/inews/article.php?story=20080117140110228 Jonathan Paul talks about his sentence and views on eco-terrorism] ] and General Electricto McDonalds[ [http://www.styleweekly.com/article.asp?idarticle=16293 "Wade's War," Style Weekly, February 6, 2008] ] [ [http://www.infoshop.org/inews/article.php?story=20080117140110228 Infoshop News - Jonathan Paul: "Will The Real Eco-Terrorists Please Stand Up?"] ] of eco-terrorism. Paul Watson accused Japanese Whalers of eco-terrorism, saying "They are the real eco-terrorists. They terrorise the environment." [http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2008/jan/16/whaling.conservation "The Guardian's" article on Japanese eco-terrorism ] [ [http://www.cdnn.info/news/eco/e080115.html CDNN :: Japanese Eco-Terrorists Take Marine Patrol Officers Hostage] ]
Groups accused of ecoterrorism
Organizations that have been labeled as "eco-terrorists" in the United States include the
Animal Liberation Front(ALF), [http://www.fbi.gov/congress/congress02/jarboe021202.htm Congressional Testimony] Testimony of James F. Jarboe, Domestic Terrorism Section Chief, Counterterrorism Division, FBI before the House Resources Committee, Subcommittee on Forests and Forest Health at February 12, 2002 "The Threat of Eco-Terrorism"] and the Earth Liberation Front(ELF),. The FBI in 2001 named the ELF as "one of the most active extremist elements in the United States", and a "terrorist threat," although they publicly disavow harm to humans or animals. [ [http://animalliberationfront.com/ALFront/alf_credo.htm ALF Credo/Guide ] ] [ [http://www.earthliberationfront.com/elf_news.htm Earth Liberation Front News ] ]
Ecoterrorism in fiction
Kim Stanley Robinson
Ark Angel", by Anthony Horowitz
Batman & Robin"
*"Blue Mars" by
Kim Stanley Robinson
*"Daisuke Hayami, aka Speedy Dave by
Darkwing Duck"'s Bushroot(Walt Disney)
Captain Planet", by Ted Turner
CHERUB", a series of novels by Robert Muchamore, contains a fictional eco-terrorist group named Help Earth
* "" by
*"Darkness Falls" and "Fearful Symmetry", 2 episodes of
* "The Divide" by
Devouring Earth", in " City of Heroes"
Douche and Turd" , " Fun with Veal" and " Free Willzyx" , 3 episodes of South Park
*"Enrica Villablanca" in
A Friend of the Earth" by T. Coraghessan Boyle
Final Fantasy VII" - The organisation AVALANCHElaunch attacks on the Shinra Company mako reactors to save the planet.
Five Days in Babylon" by P.L. ReiterAntagonist is a chic latina agent of the Earth Liberation Front
*Space Warriors in
Jokerman 8", by Richard Melo
Make Love! The Bruce Campbell Way" by Bruce Campbell
Mengele Zoo" by Gert Nygårdshaug
The Monkey Wrench Gang" by Edward Abbey
On Deadly Ground", a 1998 Film by and starring Steven Seagal
* Poison Ivy and
Ra's al Ghul, foes of The Batman, from the DC Comics universe.
*"Rainbow Six" by
The Sheep Look Up", by John Brunner.
Sick Puppy", by Carl Hiaasen.
*"State of Fear" by
Twelve Monkeys", a 1995 film starring Bruce Willisand Brad Pitt
*The events of "
28 Days Later" are inadvertently set in motion by a group of eco-terrorists.
The Space Merchants" by Frederik Pohland C. M. Kornbluth
*"Colonel Green" a villain from the past in
Star Trekwas described as an ecoterrorist in the episode .
Green Storm" and the " Anti-Traction League" from Phillip Reeve's Mortal Engines Quartet
List of environment topics
List of environmental organisations
Earth Liberation Front Press Office(ELFPO)
*North American Animal Liberation Press Office (NAALPO)
Earth Liberation Prisoner Support Network(ELPSN)
Animal Liberation Front Supporters Group(ALFSG)
THERMCON– FBI operation against the "Evan Mecham Eco-Terrorist International Conspiracy" (EMETIC)
*Operation Backfire – FBI operation
Except otherwise noted, these individuals have been convicted under terrorism laws for eco-terrorism.
Tre Arrow– set fire to trucks used in tree logging.
Rod Coronado– at a public gathering, explained how to create an arson device.
Ted Kaczynski(the "Unabomber") – used a mail-bomb campaign to force the Washington Post to publish his manifesto. (Not convicted under terrorism laws.)
Wiebo Ludwig– saboteur of petroleum mining.
Jeff Luersand William Cottrell– arsonists of SUVs.
Eric McDavid– attempted to construct a bomb in a plan to sabotage the Nimbus Dam, the U.S. Forest Service's Institute of Forest Genetics, and other targets. [http://cbs13.com/local/eco.terrorist.Eric.2.483155.html]
Daniel McGowan– set fire to a lumber farm. [http://nymag.com/news/intelligencer/33544/]
William C. Rodgers– accused of setting fire to the National Wildlife Research Center in Olympia, Washington.
Craig Rosebraugh– ELF "spokesman." (Not convicted of any crime.)
Darren Thurston– set fire to a horse corral at the Bureau of Land Managementafter releasing the horses.
Peter Daniel Young– released mink into the wild from fur farms.
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