The history of environmentalism goes back to 1272, when King Edward 1 banned the burning of sea coal. It was banned because the smoke became problematic. Many of the early examples of environmentalism where in response to air pollution; especially during the Industrial Revolution.
Most of the first environmental laws came from the Alkali Acts passed in 1863. Which regulated air pollution in England. Which was expanded upon in 1958 and put heavy supervision on air polluting industries.
The late 19th century also saw the passage of the first wildlife conservation laws. Zoologist Alfred Newton published a series of investigations titled ” The desirability of establishing a ‘close time’ for the preservation of indigenous species.” Which led to the formation of The Royal Society For the preservation of Birds and the Sea Birds preservation Act of 1869; the very first nature preservation law in the world.
“early environmentalism” en.wikipedia.org. Wikipedia. 17June2015.web.29June2015