Environmental mobilization in France is traditionally characterized by both small and large-scale manifestations against a seemingly all-powerful state apparatus. From protests against the establishment of nuclear power stations in the 1970s to more recent counter-globalization marches, environmental actors are often portrayed by French politics as reactionary, aggrieved and intransigent. However, this paper argues that environmental activists in France pursue highly sophisticated mobilization strategies in their attempt to influence policy-specific issues. It explores the activities of three environmental associations active in France: World Wildlife Fund France, France Nature Environnement and la Ligue pour la Protection des Oiseaux. A theoretical framework based on ‘policy opportunity windows’ allows us to fully appreciate the strategic repertoire of such groups. It is argued, above all, that a resource analysis offers important explanatory power for understanding an increasingly proactive, competitive and multi-actor environmental movement.

environmental activism, resource mobilization, social movement theory
dx.doi.org/10.1057/palgrave.fp.8200133, hdl.handle.net/1765/125757
French Politics
Department of Public Administration and Sociology (DPAS)

McCauley, D.A. (2007). Environmental Mobilization and Resource-Opportunity Usage. French Politics, 5, 333–353. doi:10.1057/palgrave.fp.8200133