In this speech to Congress, President Nixon argued that abuse of the natural environment had gone on too long. He called for, among other things, "stricter regulations," "expanded government action," "greater citizen involvement," and "new programs to ensure that government, industry and individuals" do their jobs and pay their share of costs. He laid out a 37-point program that would comprehensively consider pollution, waste and recreation, rather than treating these in isolation. Under the subject of "Organizing for Action," he argued that deep, widespread environmental problems could only be solved through a "full national effort embracing not only sound, coordinated planning, but also an effective follow-through that reaches into every community." He announced he had directed the Ash Council to study how best to organize the executive to deal with environmental issues.
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Richard Nixon, "Special Message to the Congress on Environmental Quality," February 10, 1970