The earth’s wild places and wildlife, which we once took for granted, are under an unprecedented assault from irresponsible development, habitat loss, trade, and climate change. NRDC is working to preserve the wild, protect endangered species, safeguard our oceans and rivers, transition communities and public lands from dirty energy extraction to responsible clean energy production, and support sustainably managed ecosystems. Just as important is how we work—investing in relationships on the ground by partnering with local communities.
From the forests in America’s Southeast to the Arctic tundra, we work to preserve the wild. We protect critical areas that provide the greatest ecological benefit and drive policy solutions that will have widespread effects, particularly relating to climate change. We build momentum to increase responsibly located renewable energy development rather than extraction of fossil fuels on public lands, all while helping communities defend against fracking and pipelines. We are also working to ensure that all people have access to the natural world, from well-maintained urban green spaces and national parks to healthy beaches and rivers.
Across the globe, we are fighting to preserve ecologically critical species while securing broad legal protections for wildlife. From bears and wolves in the Northern Rockies to pollinators such as bees and butterflies, we focus on species that can create broad gains in biodiversity. We are also tackling one of the biggest threats to wildlife, international trade, which is endangering elephants, rhinos, and other iconic species. And we work internationally—whether in countries such as China or through global forums—to defend and strengthen wildlife conservation laws.
For decades, our lawyers, scientists, and policy advocates have been instrumental in the fight to protect our oceans for current and future generations. We work to maintain and restore healthy ocean ecosystems by seeking to prevent or end destructive practices, such as overfishing, harmful offshore oil and gas drilling, and seismic blasting. We have also been leaders in promoting the establishment of marine protected areas and in protecting threated and endangered species such as marine mammals in the United States and internationally.
Since our founding, NRDC has worked to protect freshwater ecosystems. We helped pass the Clean Water Act, America’s bedrock water-protection law, which was adopted in 1972 but undermined in the following decades by court rulings. Our tireless advocacy helped lead to the 2015 issuance of the Clean Water Rule, which restored many of the Clean Water Act protections that had been eroded. We're fighting in court, in Congress, and in federal agencies to protect that rule and all the safeguards of the Clean Water Act. We also work to protect and restore flows and water quality in our nation’s rivers to sustain them for the benefit of people, fish, and wildlife—now and in a climate-changed future. Finally, we work to promote sustainable agriculture practices that will reduce water pollution, including from pesticides and fertilizers, and reduce water use through more efficient irrigation.
The five-year offshore oil and gas leasing plan puts our coastal communities and oceans at risk for offshore oil that we don't even need.
The Trump administration is once again trying to allow industry to cut corners, this time by setting bird-conservation efforts back decades.
Governments at the United Nations have the opportunity to shape the future of the ocean—and the lives of all who depend on it. And we are ready to help to bring a strong treaty to fruition.
The decision shot down Alaska’s challenge to the Roadless Rule, which protects 50 million acres throughout the United States from logging and road-building.
Brad Sewell is determined to protect our most endangered marine creatures. Even the ugly ones.
For the last 40 years, the Magnuson-Stevens Act has been our nation’s primary defense against overfishing.
NRDC’s Bobby McEnaney wrangles ranchers, energy experts, and environmentalists to protect public lands while expanding clean energy.
Trump is going after America’s most pristine wildland. Nineteen million acres of spectacular, unspoiled nature, the Arctic Refuge is the largest and wildest of our publicly owned reserves.
NRDC played a key role in banning offshore drilling in the Arctic and Atlantic. Once again, it’s fighting to protect those oceans—and the rest of America’s waters.
President Trump’s decision to revoke our National Ocean Policy is a step backward. Today’s Executive Order eliminates the requirement to work hand in hand with coastal states and tribes to address major ocean threats.
An Emmy-award winning documentary shows viewers how the underwater racket caused by human activities is destroying marine life.