Smoke on the Water: Incineration at Sea and the Birth of a Transatlantic Environmental Movement (New York: Columbia University Press, 2023)

The RIAS Professor of Transatlantic Environmental History, Dario Fazzi, has published a new book. Titled Smoke on the Water: Incineration at Sea and the Birth of a Transatlantic Environmental Movement, it offers new insights into the history of contemporary environmental protests.

Smoke on the Water traces the rise and fall of ocean incineration, showing how a transnational environmental movement tested the limits of US political and economic power. Dario Fazzi examines the anti-ocean-incineration movement that emerged on both sides of the Atlantic, arguing that it succeeded by merging local advocacy with international mobilization. He emphasizes the role played at the grassroots level by women, migrant workers, and other underrepresented groups who were at greatest risk. Environmental groups, for their part, gathered and shared evidence about the harms of at-sea incineration, building scientific consensus and influencing international debates.

New Insights

Smoke on the Water tells the compelling story of a campaign against environmental degradation in which people from marginalized communities took on the might of the US military-industrial complex. It offers new insights into the transnational dimensions of environmental regulation, the significance of nonstate actors in international history, and the making of environmental justice movements.

About the Author

Dario Fazzi teaches environmental and US history at Leiden University. He is the author of Eleanor Roosevelt and the Anti-Nuclear Movement: The Voice of Conscience (New York: Palgrave, 2016)  and has published extensively on transatlantic protests, US global base politics, and anti-toxics campaigns.

For more information about the book, click here.
To learn more about Dario Fazzi’s work and research, please visit his profile page.