I am trying in vain to locate a book I read in 2001, I think it was older than that though. I can't remember a lot about it other than I enjoyed it. It dealt with a generation / ARC ship preparing to leave Earth and a terrorist group trying to stop it from "taking the earth's resources." I remember that one of the characters was staying at NASA in Houston while they got ready to leave. There was a Japanese woman that ran the company that was building the generation ship. The terrorists were using missiles to shoot down the supply ships going up to the generation ship that is being built in orbit. The Japanese woman gets massages (it was the first time I had heard the phrase "happy ending"). Another character worries about his "marriage contract" expiring. One of the characters is in charge of loading the storehouse of Earth's information to the ship.
Its been a lot of years, but this sounds alot like the beginning of Ring by Stephen Baxter though from what I remember, the lead up on Earth was fairly short lived, I do remember there being resistance to the Generation Ship project and some of your other details sound familiar.
The Quiet Pools by Michael P. Kube-McDowell.