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Environmental Protest in Western Europe$
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Christopher Rootes

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780199252060

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2004

DOI: 10.1093/0199252068.001.0001

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(p.109) 5 Greece
Environmental Protest in Western Europe

Maria Kousis

Oxford University Press

Analysis of 579 environmental protest events in Greece, reported in Eleftherotypia during 1988–97, showed an uneven decline of protest during the decade, an overrepresentation of urban environmental claims, and the prominence of nature conservation, pollution, urban, and industrial claims made by both formal and informal environmental groups. Claims involving the health effects of environmental degradation declined, due to a steeper reduction in the reported incidence of grassroots environmental activism. In general, there was limited variation in the tactics used, with conventional protest predominating, followed by confrontation and demonstrations, and rarely by violence. Community activists tended to opt more often for confrontational or violent actions than did formal NGOs. The observed patterns are influenced by the changing political and economic opportunity structure associated with economic liberalization, the pattern of newspaper coverage, and the organization of social space.

Keywords:   community activists, confrontation, economic liberalization, environmental activists, environmental protest, grassroots environmental activism, Greece, NGOs, opportunity structure, violence

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