Not ahead of his time...we're behind our time :! Everything that's old is new again. The same issues we grapple with now where also salient in the 1970's and even in the 1940's (due to war rationing). Heck, I learned about recycling from my grandfather...a resourceful man who was in the Navy in WWII, later an engineer, and then retired to be a gentleman-farmer, he always found a million ways to reuse things.
I guess I am doing a better job teaching the "reduce, reuse, recycle" lesson at home: My 4-1/2 yr. old son said to his Nana, when opening tinker toys- and the cardboard packing came out first he said "OH I can save this for an art project!". LOL> Out of the mouths of babes.