Our wild places. Our natural heritage. Our inspiration.
OUR MONUMENTAL MOMENT
Our nation's wild places have never mattered more.
Wild rivers, towering mountains, that piece of undisturbed land close to home: they’re not just where we disconnect from the noise and bustle and technology, but where we reconnect with a part of ourselves we can’t reach any other way. And they’re where essential ecosystems and habitats find the space to thrive. But our wild places only exist today because generations of Americans have acted on their behalf, and on ours.
When they joined together to create the National Parks. To pass the Wilderness Act. To halt the clear-cutting of timber. At each of these turning points, people rose to the occasion and acted on a large enough scale to make a lasting difference. Now, it’s our turn.
This is our monumental moment.
With the looming threat of climate change and the pressure of the largest energy boom in decades, this is the biggest turning point we’ve faced in a generation. Only one-third of our public lands have permanent protections—and if they become fragmented by development or drilling, plants and animals won’t have the space to adapt as ecosystems change in a warming world.
After years of work, The Wilderness Society’s national policy expertise and on-the-ground collaborative work have created new opportunities to make a lasting impact— today. Together, we can not only preserve our wilderness legacy—we can expand it to make it enduring for a new age.
If we connect wild landscapes so they remain resilient in a changing climate; guide energy development in a smarter, more sustainable way; and inspire a new generation of support for wildlands, we can renew our wilderness promise for the century ahead. It begins with our shared leadership today.
CONNECTING WILD LANDSCAPES
To keep wildlands resilient in the face of climate change, we need to secure entire ecosystems to ensure that wildlife can adapt and migrate. That requires permanently protecting large wild places and the “bridges” of land that connect those wild places together.
We do it by building diverse local coalitions that make the strong case required to designate critical wildlands as National Monuments, Wilderness Areas, and other specially designated conservation lands.
This approach has already resulted in major conservation victories in New Mexico, California, Montana, and elsewhere. Now, we’re ready to build on our success and work with communities across the nation to help preserve our most precious wild places for generations to come.
In New Mexico, The Wilderness Society built partnerships with legislative leaders, ranchers and sportsmen, small business owners, and Hispanic and Native American leaders—all of whom advocated for the protection of the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks area.
Encouraged by the breadth of local support, President Obama officially designated the area a National Monument in May 2014, permanently protecting half a million acres spanning four mountain ranges.
GUIDING ENERGY DEVELOPMENT
As the largest energy boom in decades gathers momentum, it’s no longer enough to just keep pace. We have to get ahead of the boom—and stay ahead.
We do it by bringing together everyone with a stake—government officials, developers, and communities—and creating landscape-level leasing plans that will shape decision-making for decades.
Using this approach, we can guide development to the least environmentallysensitive places, promote renewable energy, and produce a net conservation benefit—enacting fundamental, lasting change in how energy is developed on public lands.
Ground zero for climate change, the Arctic Slope of Alaska lies at the center of a national debate—whether we will protect our wildest places or exploit them for a few short years of fossil fuel.
After years of advocacy from The Wilderness Society and a cadre of voices who believe this important region is just too wild to drill, virtually the entire Arctic National Wildlife Refuge was recommended for designation as federally protected wilderness in January 2015.
We’ve also helped influence the final outcome of a plan to ensure that the 22.8 million-acre National Petroleum Reserve is managed for its significant conservation value as well as its oil and gas reserves. Now, while 70 percent of oil reserves remain open, all development will be directed to the least environmentally-sensitive places, and 95 percent of key wildlife habitats will be protected—11 million acres in all.
Deepening and broadening wilderness support is the only way we can sustain our past work and ensure the continued protection of our wild places for tomorrow.
We need our cause to be relevant to all Americans. Through advocacy, improved access, partnerships, and outreach, The Wilderness Society connects people to wild places across the nation—creating the next generation of stewards to carry our wild legacy forward.
Because when people personally experience even some part of our wild America, the connection they feel will help them care for wildlands everywhere.
THIS IS OUR MONUMENTAL MOMENT—
and your support will lead the way forward.
FIND YOUR PLACE
in our nation's wilderness.
TAKE YOUR PLACE
in our story of conservation leadership.
SAVE YOUR PLACE
and support the wild places that matter most.