Alaska focus areas

The Wilderness Society’s work in Alaska focuses primarily on four key areas that are at risk from oil and gas development and logging.

These wild places provide critical habitat for salmon, polar bears, caribou, grizzly bears, whales and many other willdife species. They also are home to Alaska’s indigenous people, who depend on wildlands as a source of food and clean water.

Arctic National Wildlife Refuge

The Arctic Refuge is the crown jewel of the nation's wildlife refuge system. You will not find a more pristine landscape, yet every year oil and gas companies lobby Congress to open the refuge to drilling. Our work aims to protect the refuge from such harmful development.

Arctic Ocean

The Arctic Ocean is under relentless pressure from oil companies who want to drill for oil offshore. An oil spill here could be disastrous for Arctic wildlife and the coastal plain of the Arctic Refuge. We're fighting efforts to drill until more scientific knowledge and effective spill-response technology can be developed.

Western Arctic Reserve

This 22 million-acre region, also known as the Western Arctic Reserve, is vital to millions of migratory birds, thousands of caribou and numerous polar bears, musk oxen and wolves. We’re working with the Interior Department to keep drilling rigs out of the most sensitive areas.

Photo credit: Flikr creative commons: bcanepa_photos

  • Alex Thompson

    Today, the Interior Department's Bureau of Land Management announced a new methane waste rule to replace its own regulations that went into effect only about one year ago. The new rule eliminates important environmental and public health protections established under the 2016 rule and will result in increased natural gas waste and reduced taxpayer revenue.

    The following statement is from Jamie Williams, president of The Wilderness Society:

  • Michael Reinemer

    President Trump’s infrastructure and budget proposals are essentially Valentine’s gifts to oil, gas, coal and other extractive interests.

    The plans would increase fossil fuel development on public lands, weaken environmental safeguards, drain funds from conservation programs and even allow selling off public lands to pay for infrastructure.

    Jamie Williams, President of The Wilderness Society, said:

  • Michael Reinemer

    Public lands and environmental protections would be steamrolled under President Trump’s proposed infrastructure plan according to The Wilderness Society’s review of leaked White House documents.  His proposed fiscal year 2019 budget would likely further hobble budgets of federal land management agencies and choke vital programs like the Land and Water Conservation Fund. Both are expected to be released on February 12.

    Drew McConville, Senior Managing Director at The Wilderness Society, said: