On Jan 12, 2009 Norwegian philosopher Arne Naess died at the age of 96. The International Herald Tribune noted that his "ideas about promoting an intimate and all-embracing relationship between the earth and the human species inspired environmentalists and Green political activists around the world."
He did indeed - his ideas inspired many of us with his theory he called deep ecology. Its central tenet is the belief that all living beings have their own value and therefore, as Naess once put it, "need protection against the destruction of billions of humans."
Deep ecology, which called for population reduction, soft technology and non-interference in the natural world, was eagerly taken up by environmentalists impatient with "shallow ecology" (another of Naess's coinages) which did not confront technology and economic growth. See more: http://www.iht.com/articles/2009/01/15/europe/15naess.php