Art Cooley, an activist and longtime activist, who founded the Environmental Defense Fund over 50 years ago, has passed away. Cooley, who was 87, launched the Environmental Defense Fund, which is now one of the most respected environmental groups in the world, from his Long Island home in 1967.
EDF now boasts more than 2.5million members and close to 1,000 employees, from New York to London down to Beijing.
According to Jonathan, Cooley, Cooley, he died in Colorado from natural causes Sunday.
Cooley was a high school teacher in the mid-1960s. He was also one of many local activists who opposed the use of DDT. This toxin was threatening the survival of birds such as the peregrine falcon, bald eagle, and osprey. EDF was formed after the legal battle against DDT was won in the United States.
Cooley served as the organization's chair and secretary for many decades. Cooley was born on Long Island, and later moved to La Jolla in California.
Fred Krupp, EDF's long-standing president, stated that Art had "a warmth and charisma" that was evident at EDF board meetings. This helped to bring people together in common cause. "All of us who carry EDF's torch... knowing Art will be one of the greatest satisfactions in our lives."
Cooley and his colleagues used science to challenge industrial groups in court. They also helped establish the right for ordinary citizens to sue government officials to protect their health and the environment, EDF stated in a statement.
Charles Wurster is now the last remaining co-founder of Cooley. Dennis Puleston, another co-founder, also died in 2001.