Mike Peters / Shutterstock

Our Programs

Conservation

We’re running campaigns to defend and promote more open spaces, wild places and wildlife by reducing plastic pollution, banning bee-killing pesticides, defending public lands, and blocking offshore drilling.
We live in a world of incredible material abundance, but we’re running short on nature. We want more places where we can hike, bike and jog among trees and wildflowers. We want more mountaintops where we can see nothing but forest below, more rivers that flow wild and free, more shoreline where all we can hear are waves. We want more wildlife in our world, from the grizzly on the ridgeline to the bee in our garden, from the wolf in the forest to the butterfly in our backyard. We want and need more, to paraphrase Emerson, of a world so beautiful that we “can hardly believe it exists.”
  • <h4>WILDLIFE OVER WASTE</h4><h5> Goal: To protect whales, dolphins, birds, fish and other water creatures from the harm of needless plastic pollution, let’s ban take-out plastic foam cups and containers. </h5><em>NOAA</em>
  • <h4>NO BEES, NO FOOD</h4><h5>Goal: To stem the alarming decline in bees and other pollinator species, let’s stop using the bee-killing pesticides known as neonicotinoids.</h5><em>sheliapic76 via Flickr</em>
  • <h4>ENVIRONMENTAL DEFENSE: OUR PUBLIC LANDS</h4><h5>Goal: We need to defend our national monuments and other public lands from attempts to remove their protections.</h5><em>Bob Wick / BLM</em>
  • <h4>ENVIRONMENTAL DEFENSE: OUR OCEANS</h4><h5>Goal: We must defend our oceans, marine wildlife and beaches by stopping new offshore drilling and more.</h5><em>NPS Photo</em>
  • <h4>ACTION & RESULTS</h4><h5>Our national network has won plastic disposable bag bans, educated the public about the plight of the bees, protected national forests and other public lands, and kept oil rigs from spoiling our coast from Florida to the Arctic.</h5><em>staff photo</em>
We want more nature in our lives

For centuries, we sacrificed nature in our lives for the sake of economic progress. But that’s not a world we have to live in anymore. Nor is it the future our children deserve—especially when we're being told to accept less nature in our lives just so we can produce and consume more stuff we don’t need.

There are so many—too many to name—iconic animals native to America that are now endangered or threatened. There’s the right whale, sperm whale, humpback whale and fin whale. The sea otter, ringed seal, Steller sea lion, manatee and loggerhead turtle. On land there’s the polar bear and grizzly bear, the gray wolf, the Florida panther, the ocelot, and the Sierra Nevada bighorn sheep.

We’ve sacrificed enough nature in our lives.

California Redwoods
Joseph Bylund via Flickr, CC BY-ND 2.0
A desire to protect the places we love

Fortunately, we live in the country that created the world’s first national parks. At our best, we as a people have acted out of a deep desire to protect the places we love, both those that are close to home as well as those that define our country and our people, from the Grand Canyon to the Great Lakes, from the redwood forest to the Gulf Stream waters.

That’s why Environment America is running campaigns for more open spaces, more wild places and more wildlife:

Wildlife Over Waste: We’re asking 25 states to help protect whales, dolphins, birds, fish and other water creatures from the harm of needless plastic pollution by banning take-out plastic foam cups and containers

No Bees, No Food: We’re fighting to save bees and other pollinators by urging states and others to ban bee-killing pesticides.

Environmental Defense: Our Public Lands: We’re standing up for our national monuments and other public lands by blocking attempts to remove their protections.

Environmental Defense: Our Oceans: We’re defending our oceans, marine wildlife and beaches by opposing plans for new oil and gas drilling along nearly the entire coastline of the country.

None of this will be easy. Some opponents will push in the opposite direction because they hold different values. Some will oppose us out of self-interest. But it’s up to us to stand up for America’s special places and all the life they support.

The Environment America approach

Each of these campaigns aims for concrete steps that will move us closer to a world where there’s more open space, more wild places and more wildlife. But they share a common approach. Each campaign strives to:

Put the environment first. The value of nature is immeasurable, derived not only from the resources it provides but from its inherent beauty. “In wildness,” as Thoreau put it, “is the preservation of the world.” Through our research and public education, we’re working to shift more hearts and minds over to this point of view.

Take a strategic approach. We must think big and act boldly, but we recognize that progress comes one step at a time. Our focus is on making a difference in public policy and in our lives and our environment, not just making a statement.

Build on what works. We’ve won policies that have resulted in more protections for open spaces, wild places and wildlife at every level. From winning bans on disposable plastic bags to reaching 670,000 people with our call to ban bee-killing pesticides, from putting nearly 60 million acres of national forest off-limits to logging and new roads to a 20-year moratorium on new mining around the Grand Canyon.

Work together. We work to unite people from all across the political spectrum around protecting and preserving nature, whether it’s hikers and campers in Oregon who want wild places to explore, or religious leaders in Pennsylvania who want all of us to be good stewards of the Earth. Our advocates in Washington, D.C., lobby members of Congress from both parties. Our advocates in the states build coalitions that include hunters and whitewater rafters, serious climbers and casual hikers, business owners and educators, and people from all walks of life. Our organizers and canvassers engage literally hundreds of thousands of people. Our members and activists live in all 50 states.

Our priority action

Take action to protect bees. Tell the EPA to declare a moratorium on bee-killing pesticides