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Environmental Policy

* Indicates that the item is located in the Reference collection on the 3rd floor of Cook Library.

  Environmental Issues & Atlases
Check the following Reference books for an overview of your topic. See also:
Congressional Research Service Reports on the Environment that are reports intended to provide an overview of current environmental topics being addressed by the U.S. Congress.
  • Sage Reference Online includes several encyclopedias which have relevant articles on the various aspects of climate change
    • Once in the research database, type your search words into the search box
    • Use the Advanced Search feature if you want to search for your search terms in the title of an article
    • Since these are encyclopedias, the most effective way to search for information is to use broad topics like you would when searching for books - For example, climate change, greenhouse gases, global warming
    • In particular, look for articles in:
      • Encyclopedia of Global Warming and Climate Change
        • Includes articles on issues that affect the environment worldwide and also on the state of the environment in nations around the world
        • Each article accompanied by a brief bibliography
        • Supplementary material includes glossary, resource guide, chronology, and global warming charts and graphs compiled by Robert A. Rohde at UC Berkeley
      • Encyclopedia of Environment and Society
        • Includes articles on the politics of the environment, environmental movements and regulations, and environmental organizations
        • Articles accompanied by bibliographies
        • Supplementary material includes topographic maps of regions of the world, glossary, resource guide, chronology, and environmental indicators (statistics) from the United Nations
  • CQ Global Researcher is a magazine-type publication that provides background information on topics of wide interest
    • Note the list of related reports that also includes those published in CQ Researcher, which has a focus on issues in the U.S. rather than globally.
  • Gale Virtual Reference Library - includes several encyclopedias which have relevant articles mostly on the social and ethical aspects of climate change
    • Once in the research database, type your search words into the search box
    • Use the Advanced Search feature if you want to search for your search terms in the title of an article
    • Since these are encyclopedias, the most effective way to search for information is to use broad topics like you would when searching for books - For example, climate change, greenhouse gases, global warming

Great Debates in American Environmental History.
2008 [ABC-Clio]

  • Available through the Cook Library Catalog. Click on Find It. Log in with your TU NetID for off-campus access.
  • Including topics such as parks & forests, animals, sustainable development, agriculture, water management, energy, cities, transportation, human encounters, ethics, politics & social reform

*The Environment A to Z. 2001.
Encyclopedia providing succinct overviews of domestic and international environmental issues surrounding topics such as waste disposal, pollution, energy, global warming, and conservation. Includes summaries and implications of major environmental laws, a list of Congressional Committees responsible for environmental policy, and a brief bibliography of key resources on 20 environmental issues.


*Encyclopedia of Environmental Issues
3 v. 2000.
Includes signed articles written by academics and experts on a wide range of environmental topics. Most entries consist of an overview, important concepts and suggested readings. Biographies, events, legislation and organizations are also covered.


*Encyclopedia of Global Change:Environmental Change and Human Society
2 v. 2002.
Includes signed articles written by academics and experts on the effects of the "natural and anthropogenic" changes in the Earth on humans. Entries include overviews, definitions, important concepts and suggested readings. Broad areas covered include concepts of global change, earth and earth systems, human factors, resources, responses to global change, agreements, associations, and institutions, biographies, and case studies.


*Environmental Encyclopedia
. 2003.
Covers environmental issues, terminology, legislation, and organizations, environmentalists, and geographic locations. Excels in its coverage of issues from a biological perspective.


AAAS Atlas of Population & Environment. 2000
Overview presents world population and consumption trends, the state of major world ecosystems, and policy responses. Includes world maps accompanied by essays demonstrating the effects of population on natural resources, landuse, atmosphere, waste & chemicals, ecosystems, and biodiversity.

Atlas of Climate Change
. 2011


Atlas of Global Change
. 1998


*Atlas of U.S. and Canadian Environmental History
. 2003.

Additional Web resources on environmental issues:


  • Comprehensive resource of timely and authoritative information on the environment around the globe
  • Includes:
    • Encyclopedia of Earth - consisting of over 3500 articles written by scholars
    • Earth Forum - a discussion list monitored by environmental experts
    • Earth News - providing current articles on environmental issues as reported in various sources from around the world

Natural Resources Defense Council

  • Environmental action group that provides resources of information on many issues including global warming, oceans, wildlife, environmental justice, nuclear energy, waste, and weapons, smart growth, recycling, and international issues
  • Sections with legislative updates and environmental policy

Stateline.org [A project of the Pew Center on the States]

  • Environmental issues and proposed solutions at the state level

Environmental Links from
Google http://www.google.com
Yahoo http://www.yahoo.com
These Web directories provide links to environmental issues, arranged by topics such as laws, recycling, endangered species, ozone depletion and nuclear waste.


EnviroLink Network
Links to national and international environmental issues, news stories, governmental bodies, organizations, and publications.

National Council for Science and the Environment
Links to state of the environment reports [national, regional, state, & local], environmental news sources, laws. Link directly to environmental information and data through the National Library for the Environment
Strategic Energy Policy: Challenges for the 21st Century

Independent task force report cosponsored by the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy and the Council on Foreign Relations to define a U.S. strategic national energy policy.

Academic Search [Ebsco]

Available through Cook Library home page at: http://cooklibrary.towson.edu
Search for abstracts and some full text articles from periodicals including magazines, journals, and newspapers.

Note: Check this database for secondary sources on environmental issues, legislation, and organizations at the Federal level.

  Interest Groups & Organizations


Research Guide to U.S. and International Interest Groups. 2004.
Provides an overview of research that has been done on the various aspects of interest groups. Covers issues such as the role that interest groups play at various levels including local, state, national, and international, organizational structure, as well as their role in consumer education and formation of public policy. Includes sections on environmental interest groups in the U.S. ( pp.255-6) and internationally (pp.349-51).


Public Interest Group Profiles, 2006-2007 [Biennial]
Provides information on public affairs groups, including mission, leadership, membership, budget, current concerns, political orientation, and effectiveness. Arranged by focus, including environmental.


Environment Encyclopedia and Directory, 2010 . 5th ed.
This five-part volume includes an introductory essay on global warming, 26 maps regarding the condition of the environment worldwide, a glossary of environmentally-related terms,concepts, events, and programs, directories of international and national environmental organizations and governmental ministries and agencies, a list of periodicals that deal with the environment, and a Who's Who of the Environment --from the Forward


Conservation Directory: The Guide to Worldwide Environmental Organizations, 2005-2006 [National Wildlife Federation]
Lists international, federal, provincial, and state government agencies, non-governmental for-profit and non-profit organizations and educational institutions. Indices by organizational name, keyword, staff name, and geographic location.

Links to environmental organizations from
Google http://www.google.com
Yahoo http://www.yahoo.com


Encyclopedia of Associations. [Annual]
Provides basic information on national associations such as address, membership #s, Web home page URL, publications, and brief synopsis of activities.

LexisNexis Academic

  • Available through Cook Library home page at: http://cooklibrary.towson.edu/databasesByTitle.cfm#L
    [Use your Library ID to access this from off campus.]
  • Click on News tab.
  • Can search for Full text of U.S. newspapers including Baltimore Sun (current 6 months only), New York Times (1980 - ) and Washington Post (1977 - ) or major world newspapers.

Note: The truncation symbol in this database is !. For example, environment! = environment, environments, environmental

Note: Search for your organization in the Headline and Lead Paragraph. Extend the time period searched to longer than previous 3 months, if desired. Once you have a list of results, you may want to click on Sort by: Relevance to change the arrangement of results so that the most directly related articles are listed first, instead of the "most current".

For State/Local Newspapers & News Services: Click on Sources tab. From the dropdown Country menu, choose United States and than an individual state. Next check of the box for the state's News Sources. This is a good place to start when researching organizational activity at the local or state level.

Note: This is probably the best place to look for articles about state organizations and their activities, as it provides full text of newspapers from across the country. However, use National Newspapers database for the complete run of The Sun back to 1837.

National Newspapers

Available through Cook Library Web site
[Use your Library ID to access this from off campus.]
Provides full text of 5 newspapers including The Sun (Baltimore) (1990 - ), Christian Science Monitor (1990 - ), New York Times (1999 - ), Wall Street Journal (1984 - ), and Washington Post (1987 - ).

NOTE: The truncation symbol in this database is *. For example, environment* = environment, environments, environmental, etc.

NOTE:To limit a search to The Sun (Baltimore), from the main search screen, click on select multiple databases next to the words News - Proquest Newspapers, deselect Proquest Newspapers, select The Sun.

NOTE: To search multiple papers, such as The Sun (Baltimore) and the Washington Post, from the main search screen, click on the words select multiple databases. Uncheck Proquest Newspapers, check off the Washington Post and The Sun. Click on Continue and type in your search topic.

  U.S. Governmental Agencies

EPA : U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
A treasure trove of environmental information can be found on this site, including an alphabetical list of environmental topics covered and links to federal laws and regulations.

White House Council on Environmental Quality
Coordinates governmental agencies in the development of federal environmental initiatives and policies.
Links from this site lead to the National Environmental Protection Act, the latest on environmental news and policy, agency links, and CEQ reports.


Federal Emergency Management Agency [FEMA]

  • Division of U.S. Department of Homeland Security responsible for planning and preparing for and recovery from natural disasters such as earthquakes, floods, tornadoes, and hurricanes
  • Statistics on declared disasters from 1953 to date and maps of disasters

National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health : Mining


National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

  • Theme pages on topics such as weather, oceans, fisheries, climate, and coasts
  • Site focus is more on the organization and function of and PR for NOAA, than on providing educational resources
  U.S. Laws

Environmental Law Handbook. 21st ed. [Government Institues]. 2011.
Provides a general overview and key aspects of major environmental laws.


Environmental Law. [West Nutshell Series]. 7th ed. 2008.
Provides a general overview of environmental law including the judicial role, federal and state power. Covers pollution, toxic substances, and preservation of natural areas, highlighting major legislation. Includes Table of Cases.


Maryland Environmental Law Handbook. 2003
Maryland's interpretation of Federal environmental law as enforced through COMAR. Covers pollution, toxic and hazardous substances, preservation of natural areas, and employee and community right-to-know. Overview of Maryland Department of Environment operations and Chesapeake Bay Critical Area Protection Program.

*West's Encyclopedia of American Law
. 12 v. 1998-
Includes overviews of environmental topics from a legal perspective, including significance of important cases, legal concepts and laws.
Also available full text online from the Cook Library Web site at: http://cooklibrary.towson.edu/databasesByTitle.cfm#W
[Use your Library ID to access this from off campus.]

Legal Information Institute: Environmental Law

Links to USC and CFR text representing major environmental legislation, Federal agencies dealing with environmental issues, international environmental conventions and treaties, and a selected list of environmentally related Web sites.

Thurgood Marshall Law Library: Environmental Resources http://www.law.umaryland.edu/marshall/researchguides/specialtypages/environmentalresources.asp
Directory of links to important environmental law Web sites.
LexisNexis Academic Available through Cook Library home page at: http://cooklibrary.towson.edu
Search under Legal Research. Primary resources include full text of case law opinions, codes and regulations, and patents. Secondary resources include legal news and law reviews. Federal and State resources.

Thurgood Marshall Law Library: Maryland Resources

Directory of links to Web sites dealing with Maryland laws & legislation.

  U.S. Legislation

Environmental Policy Collection

  • This digital collection indexes a variety of resources focused on environmental issues, with an emphasis on climate change
  • Some of the organizations represented include U.S. Climate Change Science Program, NOAA, International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, UNEP, and World Meteorological Organization

National Council for Science and the Environment
Provides access to many resources related to environmental policy including:

The following 3 items are excellent sources of background information on Federal legislation. The Congress and the Nation and Congressional Quarterly Almanac include chapters on Environment & Energy.


Congress and the Nation. [quadrennial]
U.S. politics & government based on material from the CQ Almanac & other sources. Each volume provides a chronology for a 4 year period. For highlights of environmental legislation that was passed during the 4 years, check the section: Environment and Energy.


Congressional Quarterly Almanac. [annual]
Each volume devoted to summary of congressional legislation for one session of Congress; arranged by category of legislation; includes voting information. For highlights of environmental legislation that was passed during the year, check the section: Energy & Environment.
C Q Weekly [before 4/11/98 was Congressional Quarterly Weekly Report] Available on the 2nd floor of the library in print from 1965 - 1998 and indexed and available in full text online from 1998- through various sources from Cook Library. [To access from off campus, you will be asked to enter your NetID.
Weekly summary of congressional action & developments; special reports on key legislation.

Thomas: Legislative Information on the Internet

Provides access to recent activity of the U.S. Congress including bill summaries and status (1973 to present), bill text (1989 to present), House and Senate roll call votes (1990 to present), Congressional Record text (1989 to present), House and Senate committee reports (current 5 Congresses), House and Senate committee schedules and activities (current Congress), House and Senate directories of members (current Congress).

Public Agenda Online:The Inside Source for Public Opinion & Policy Analysis

Nonpartisan briefing on policy issues concerning the environment.

[Capitol Advantage]

Current awareness site for environmental issues before Congress. Lists alerts (from organizations), letters, bills , votes, and organizations.

  International Treaties & Issues

Environmental Treaties and Resources Indicators Service [ENTRI]
Search for treaties by subject and/or by country.

United Nations Environment Programme [UNEP]

World Resources Institute

Environmental think tank that supports projects and publishes information on environmental issues.
EarthTrends:The Environmental Information Portal is an online database, sponsored by World Bank, UNEP, UNDP, USAID, SIDA, and Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs that:

  • Covers the topics of Coastal & Marine Ecosystems, Forests, Grasslands & Drylands, Water Resources, Climate, Energy, Biodiversity, Agriculture, Economics, Population, and Environmental Governance
  • Includes country profiles, maps, data tables, and news stories for each topic
  • Allows creation of tables that provide comparative data for regions and countries by topic

Report Series: World Resources is available online from the WRI site:

  • 2005 - The Wealth of the Poor:Managing Ecosystems to Fight Poverty
  • 2002 - 2004 - Decisions for the Earth: Balance, Voice, and Power
  • 2000 - 2001 - People and Ecosystems: The Fraying Web of Life
  • 1998 - 1999 - Environmental Change and Human Health
  • 1996 - 1997 - The Urban Environment

    Each publication focuses on a different topic and includes data, charts, graphs, maps, and text that describe the global environment.
    This series is also available in Cook Library [HC59 W6735]. The latest volume is kept in Reference.
    [REF HC59 W673]

World Bank Group

Worldwatch Institute

Worldwatch studies and publishes on the intersection of enviromental, social, and economic factors that lead to an environmentally sustainable world.

  • State of the World -
    • Each annual issue focuses on a different theme -Some recent articles cover the oil economy, environmental cooperation, and managing water conflict
    • 1998 - 2003 issues available online
    • Available in Cook Library's print collection from 1984- [HC59 S74]- Latest issue in Reference stacks
  • Vital Signs
    • Annual publication that measures the global health by presenting key indicators that include Energy and Climate Trends
    • 1998 - 2003 issues available online
    • Available in Cook Library's print collection from 1999- [HC10 V53]- Latest issue in Reference stacks

Resources for the Future

Think tank that publishes papers and supports social science research and policymaking on the global environment and natural resources. Research topics include biodiversity, climate, energy & electricity, forests, hazardous, solid & nuclear waste, recycling, land use, and water.

*International Encyclopedia of Environmental Politics. 2002.


Encyclopedia of World Environmental History. 2004.


Encyclopedia of the Biosphere. 11 v. 1999.

The URL for this document is http://pages.towson.edu/sara/enviro.html

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