Political opportunities and local grassroots environmental movements

Almeida, Paul, and Linda Brewster Stearns. 1998. “Political opportunities and local grassroots environmental movements.” Social Problems 45(1):37–60.


This paper examines the Minamata mercury victims’ grassroots movement. Our analysis demonstrates the value of using a political opportunity framework to understand local grassroot environmental movement (LGEM) outcomes. We explain the variation over time in a LGEM’s ability to achieve successful outcomes across different political environments. Specifically, we show that the success of the Minamata LGEM hinged on its ability to employ nontraditional and institutionally disruptive tactics during a period of expanded political opportunities.

Last updated on 03/04/2022