Greenpeace is a nongovernmental organization that seeks to promote environmental justice through a variety of methods of nonviolent activism. Greenpeace's website states the following as its mission: Greenpeace is a global, independent campaigning organization that uses peaceful protest and creative communication to expose global environmental problems and promote solutions that are essential to a green and peaceful future (Greenpeace).
Greenpeace is a truly global organization: it has offices in 55 different countries and activities in all seven continents. Described as "the most visible environmental NGO today," Greenpeace is known for its vast success in garnering public attention across the world (Mintzberg and Westley). Greenpeace's activism activities tend to be bold and radical, and although their efforts often inspire awe and engagement among the community, Greenpeace has also attracted a lot of critics over the years. Some of their tactics have been highly controversial, even illegal in some cases. They also have a history of "monkeywrenching" and "ecotage": numerous Greenpeace activists have destroyed property in their attempts to promote environmental justice.
Mintzberg, H., & Westley, F. (1999). Sustaining the Institutional Environment. Organization Studies,20(7), 71-94. doi:10.1177/017084060002000705
Greenpeace's website lists the following goals of the organization:
- "protect biodiversity in all its forms
- prevent pollution and abuse of the earth's ocean, land, air and fresh water
- end all nuclear threats
- promote peace, global disarmament and non-violence"
In general, Greenpeace's aims to use means of nonviolent protests, creative communications, and other forms of activism to not only spread awareness and interest in environmental issues, but also propose solutions. Greenpeace seeks to promote and create open, informed debate regarding environmental issues in the global society. Two other goals of Greenpeace include maintaining independence and not forming any permanent allies or enemies.
Greenpeace works to fight against a number of industries, activities, and events that threaten environmental health, including but not limited to: nuclear energy issues, toxic waste, commercial whaling and seal hunting, overfishing, genetic engineering, deforestation, oil and coal industries, and issues of climate change. Greenpeace also frequently faces criticism from a variety of individuals, usually those who have stakes in any of the aforementioned environmental issues that Greenpeace seeks to eliminate.