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- Clearly, we have compiled a record of serious failures in recent technological encounters with the environment. In each case, the new technology was brought into use before the ultimate hazards were known. We have been quick to reap the benefits and slow to comprehend the costs.
- Quoted from "Frail Reeds in a Harsh World". New York: The American Museum of Natural History. Natural History. Journal of the American Museum of Natural History, Vol. LXXVIII No. 2, February, 1969, p. 44.
- The peak of the [Presidential] campaign happened in Albuquerque, where a local reporter said to me, "Dr. Commoner, are you a serious candidate or are you just running on the issues?"
- Quoted in Thomas Vinciguerra, "At 90, an Environmentalist From the ’70s Still Has Hope," The New York Times (2007-06-19}
- In recent years it has become impossible to talk about man's relation to nature without referring to "ecology"...such leading scientists in this area as Rachel Carson, Barry Commoner, Eugene Odum, Paul Ehrlich and others, have become our new delphic voices...so influential has their branch of science become that our time might well be called the "Age of Ecology".
- Donald Worster, Nature's Economy, Cambridge University Press, 1994.