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SAGE Publications
Environmental Communication and the Public Sphere / Edition 4

Environmental Communication and the Public Sphere / Edition 4


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Environmental Communication and the Public Sphere / Edition 4

The Fourth Edition of Environmental Communication and the Public Sphere remains the only comprehensive introduction to the growing field of environmental communication, ranging from an historical overview of key terms to important legal and technological developments. This innovative book focuses on how human communication influences the way we perceive and act in the environment. It also examines how we interpret environmental “problems” and decide what actions to take with regard to the natural world.

Three-time president of the Sierra Club, the largest environmental group in the United States, lead author Robert Cox leverages his vast experience to offer insights into the news media, Congress, environmental conflict, advocacy campaigns, and other real-world applications of environmental communication. New coauthor Phaedra Pezzullo brings two decades of applied experience working with grassroots environmental justice and health organizations, citizen advisory boards, and student-led campaigns, as well as her internationally recognized research on toxic pollution, social injustices, public advocacy, and more.

The authors introduce the reader to the major areas, terms, and debates of this evolving field. The Fourth Edition incorporates major revisions that include four new chapters on visual and popular culture, digital media and activism, the sustainability of college and corporation campuses, and the legal “standing” of citizens and nature. Updates throughout the text draw on timely topics including visual communication used in climate science campaigns, fracking and challenges to the right to know, plastic bag bans, consumer apps, digital activism for environmental justice, green marketing, and arguments on giving legal rights to nonhuman entities from dolphins to rivers.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781483344331
Publisher: SAGE Publications
Publication date: 05/13/2015
Edition description: Fourth Edition
Pages: 440
Sales rank: 593,364
Product dimensions: 7.00(w) x 9.90(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Robert Cox (PhD, University of Pittsburgh) is Professor Emeritus of Communication Studies and the Curriculum for the Environment and Ecology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. His principal research areas are environmental and climate change communication, and strategic studies of social movements. One of the nation’s leading scholars in environmental communication, Cox is editor of Environmental Communication, a 4-volume reference collection (SAGE, 2016), coeditor of The Routledge Handbook of Environment and Communication (2015), and author of numerous studies of environmental, climate and other social change campaigns. He served three times as President of the Sierra Club, the largest grassroots U.S. environmental organization, as well as serving on the board of directors for Earth Echo International. Cox has campaigned on environmental concerns with former Vice President Al Gore, singer Melissa Etheridge, and other public figures; he continues to advise environmental groups on their communication programs, and regularly participates in environmental and climate change initiatives such as the Peoples Climate March. He has enjoyed hiking in the Himalayas and the southern Appalachian Mountains in the U.S.

Phaedra C. Pezzullo (Ph.D., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill) is an associate professor at the University of Colorado Boulder, USA. Her interdisciplinary training in environmental sciences and humanities informs her principle areas of publication, including environmental justice, climate justice, public advocacy, and tourist studies. She authored Toxic Tourism: Rhetorics of Travel, Pollution, and Environmental Justice (2007), which won four book awards, including the Christine L. Oravec Research Award in Environmental Communication. Pezzullo coedited Environmental Justice and Environmentalism: The Social Justice Challenge to the Environmental Movement (2007) and edited Cultural Studies and the Environment, Revisited (2010). She is committed to public engagement, including but not limited to serving on the national Sierra Club's Environmental Justice Committee, on the City of Bloomington’s Environmental Commission, on the Executive Committee of the Just Transition Collaborative, as Director of BoulderTalks (, and on the International Environmental Communication Association’s Climate Negotiations Working Group at COP21 in Paris. She enjoys weekly hikes with her partner and child, as well as cooking a plant-based diet. For more, see her website:

Table of Contents

Introduction: Speaking for/About the Environment
Chapter 1. Studying/Practicing Environmental Communication
The Study of Environmental Communication
Nature, Communication, and the Public Sphere
Diverse Voices in a “Green” Public Sphere
Global Study of Environmental Communication
Chapter 2. Contested Meanings of Environment
Learning to Love Nature
Wilderness Preservation Versus Natural Resource Conservation
Public Health and the Ecology Movement
Environmental Justice: Linking Social Justice and Environmental Quality
Movements for Sustainability and Climate Justice
Chapter 3. Symbolic Constructions of Environment
A Rhetorical Perspective
Communication Frames
Dominant and Critical Discourses
Chapter 4. The Environment in/of Visual and Popular Culture
The Environment and Popular Culture
Looking at the Environment
Moving Images of Disasters
Green Art, Marketing, and Graphic Design
Chapter 5. News Media and Environmental Journalism (Old and New)
Growth and Changes in Environmental News
News Production and the Environment
Media Effects
Digital Technologies and the Transformation of Environmental News
Chapter 6. Scientists, Technology, and Environmental Controversies
Science, Technology, and Symbolic Legitimacy
The Precautionary Principle
Early Warners: Environmental Scientists and the Public
Science and the Trope of Uncertainty
Communicating Climate Science
Chapter 7. Environmental Risk Communication and the Public
Dangerous Environments: Assessing Risk
Communicating Environmental Risks in the Public Sphere
Citizens Becoming Scientists
Mainstream News Media and Environmental Risk
Chapter 8. Advocacy Campaigns and Message Construction
Environmental Advocacy
Environmental Advocacy Campaigns
The Campaign to Protect Zuni Salt Lake
Message Construction
Chapter 9. Digital Media and Environmental Activism
Grassroots Activism and Digital Media
Environmental NGOs and Digital Campaigns
Multimodality and Networked Campaigns
Scaling Up: The “Peoples Climate March”
Chapter 10. Environmental Justice and Climate Justice Movements
Environmental Justice: Challenging a Place Apart
Challenging Indecorous Voices and Sacrifice Zones
The Global Movement for Climate Justice
Chapter 11. Sustainability and the “Greening” of Corporations and Campuses
Sustainability: An Interdisciplinary Approach
Free Market Discourse and the Environment
Corporate Sustainability Communication: Reflection or Deflection?
Greenwashing and the Discourse of Green Consumerism
Communicating Sustainability on and Through Campuses
Chapter 12. Public Participation in Environmental Decisions
Right to Know: Access to Information
Right to Comment
SLAPP: Strategic Litigation Against Public Participation
Growth of Public Participation Internationally
Chapter 13. Managing Conflict: Collaboration and Environmental Disputes
New Approaches to Environmental Disputes
Collaborating to Resolve Environmental Conflicts
Limits of Collaboration and Consensus
Common Criticisms of Collaboration
Chapter 14. Citizens’ (and Nature’s) Standing: Environmental Protection and the Law
Right of Standing and Citizen Suits
Landmark Cases on Environmental Standing
Global Warming and the Right of Standing
Do Future Generations and Non-Human Nature Have a Right of Standing?

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