The investment in a web-based business will ensure that the magazine can remain at the forefront of what is now the global mainstream issue of promoting an ecological agenda through its uniquely informed news stories, opinion and debate.
Maintaining the traditions of uncompromising investigation and cutting edge analysis that have been the hallmark of the Ecologist, the website will continue to feature authoritative contributions from leading writers and experts. We also plan to upload 40 years of Ecologist editions online, creating the world’s most extensive ecological archive which will serve as a roadmap of the development of the environmental movement .
Most importantly the website will continue to set the environmental and political agenda in the UK and abroad.
Richard Coles, Publishing Director of the Ecologist, said: ‘We have always led the way by producing a magazine to the highest possible environmental standards by printing on 100 per cent post consumer waste paper, printing with vegetable inks and distributing to North America by boat.
‘Three years after the first digital edition of the magazine we have taken the decision to move forward solely as an online entity. We believe that the decision will be welcomed by our readers who demand the highest possible environmental standards.’
Zac Goldsmith, director of the magazine, said:
‘When the magazine was launched, it was virtually a lone voice in the wilderness. It is immensely gratifying to all those who care about the environment that most of the issues the magazine has espoused for 39 years have now moved into the mainstream of political and social thinking.
‘Relaunching online will enable us to react faster to what is now a global and daily debate on how best to preserve the world in which we all live. It is an exciting development which will massively increase our reach.’
The Ecologist was launched by Teddy Goldsmith in July 1970, when the environmental movement began to find its voice on the fringes of mainstream political thinking through the emergence of Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth campaigners and thinkers.
The magazine quickly gained fame for its Blueprint for Survival, a green manifesto that proposed the formation of a movement for sustainability. This led in turn to the creation of People Party, later renamed the Ecology Party and finally the Green Party. The Blueprint for Survival went on to sell more than 750,000 copies in paperback.
The magazine continued to lead the environmental debate by raising the issue of global climate change during the African droughts of the mid-1970s and the revelations of the torching of the Amazon rainforest in the early 1980s. More recently it exposed the fallacy of cheap nuclear energy long before conventional economists became persuaded by what now seems obvious to all.
Teddy’s nephew Zac became editor in 1998 and soon after took the decision to dedicate an entire edition to examining the environmental record of the highly litigious biotech giant, Monsanto. The edition was a response to adverts posted by Monsanto in magazines and papers throughout Europe declaring that: ‘Biotechnology is a matter of opinions; Monsanto believes you should hear all of them.’ Despite the contracted printer refusing to print the edition for fear of legal reprisals, it went on to become the biggest selling edition in the magazine’s history and was translated in six languages.
Throughout the last ten years the topics of globalisation, toxic chemicals and nuclear power have continued to dominate the magazine’s agenda and the magazine has been the trailblazer that has ushered many of them into the political mainstream.
The May, June and July editions of the Ecologist will be published as usual, with the final print edition of the magazine published on June 19.
The new website of the Ecologist will be relaunched in June 2009 at www.theecologist.org.
Ecologist subscribers will be contacted shortly about their current subscription.
In the meantime we encourage everyone to sign up to our email newsletter to keep up to date with our exciting digital plans.