EDF mourns the passing of co-founder George M. Woodwell

June 20, 2024

The board and staff of Environmental Defense Fund mourn the passing of EDF co-founder and environmental pioneer George M. Woodwell, who died June 18 at age 95. His enormous contribution to the cause of environmental protection will be his enduring legacy. 

When Woodwell and EDF co-founder Charles Wurster both arrived on Long Island, New York, in the mid-1960s, they collaborated on studying the environmental effects of the pesticide DDT. They joined with other scientists and an attorney to win an injunction against the spraying of DDT on Long Island in 1966, to found Environmental Defense Fund in 1967, and to win a U.S. ban on DDT in 1972. 

Woodwell and other scientists were among the first to present concerns about climate change to the U.S. Congress. He served on the EDF Board of Trustees for many years and remained an honorary trustee until his death. He will be deeply missed.

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One of the world’s leading international nonprofit organizations, Environmental Defense Fund (edf.org) creates transformational solutions to the most serious environmental problems. To do so, EDF links science, economics, law, and innovative private-sector partnerships. With more than 3 million members and offices in the United States, China, Mexico, Indonesia and the European Union, EDF’s scientists, economists, attorneys and policy experts are working in 28 countries to turn our solutions into action. Connect with us on Twitter @EnvDefenseFund