Climate Science and Sustainability: Global Origins of Modern Environmentalism
Global Perspectives from the CIA Archives

Quick Facts

  • A fully searchable digitized collection of primary source documents related to climate science and sustainability
  • Unique international sources chronicle scientific advances and activism from 1957 to 1995
  • A wealth of information for numerous STEM and humanities disciplines.


As scientists’ understanding of the earth sciences advanced by leaps and bounds in the latter half of the 20th century, concern emerged over human impact on the planet’s biology and atmosphere. The modern environmental movement grew from this concern, as did pioneering research on climate change. Climate Science and Sustainability: Global Origins of Modern Environmentalism is a fully searchable digitized collection that captures these advances as they unfolded, offering valuable insight for students and researchers in a variety of disciplines.

A wide-ranging archive of climate science history
Between 1957 and 1995, the Central Intelligence Agency collected media from around the world and translated it into English, including tens of thousands of journal articles, government publications, newspapers, magazines, and transcribed television and radio broadcasts. Together, these primary source materials offer an unparalleled account of the origins of modern environmentalism, as well as the scientific advances that spurred it. When the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change produced its first assessment report in 1990, for example, governments in every region took note—some with skepticism, and some with alarm that eventually led to policy changes.

Applications across STEM and humanities disciplines
The emerging science of climate change and sustainability has impacted nearly every aspect of human life, from the cars we drive to the air we breathe. Climate Science and Sustainability: Global Origins of Modern Environmentalism chronicles the research and activism related to these impacts, including English translations of academic articles, media reports and government analysis unavailable elsewhere. Students and researchers across a broad range of disciplines, including STEM and Humanities, will find myriad applications for this material. And Readex’s intuitive online interface enables researchers to easily browse the collections by a broad range of topics, each providing highly relevant results for users at all levels.

A Global Origins of Modern Science and Technology collection
In addition to Climate Science and Sustainability: Global Origins of Modern Environmentalism, closely related collections also derived from the Archives of the Central Intelligence Agency include Aeronautics and Space Flight: Global Origins of Modern Aviation and Rocketry; Morality and Science: Global Origins of Modern Bioethics; Computing and Artificial Intelligence: Global Origins of the Digital Age; and Nuclear Energy: Global Origins of Energy Resource Management in the Atomic Age.

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