We rely on wilderness not only to inspire and enjoy but also to protect our watersheds, clean the air we breathe, and provide a home for the diverse species that enrich our world.

NRDC protects wildlife and unspoiled lands from the threats of industrial development, commercial exploitation, pollution, and climate change. We partner with ranchers, farmers, energy companies, and the government to promote solutions that help wild predators coexist with livestock and people. We push for international agreements that shield polar bears, elephants, rhinos, and other animals from being killed for trade. And we fight to keep reckless oil and gas drilling out of wild areas, from the Atlantic Ocean to the Boreal Forest.

Our Priorities

Wildlife Conservation

99 percent of plants and animals protected under the Endangered Species Act still exist today.

Wildlife Trade

Every year, tens of thousands of animals are killed for trade of their parts.

Wilderness Protection

Only 11 percent of land under the Bureau of Land Management is protected from drilling.

What's at Stake

What you can do

Tell Interior Secretary Zinke to defend our national monuments

Be a good neighbor to struggling pollinators by turning your backyard into a welcome pit stop

Stop Trump and Pruitt’s escalated anti-environment assault

Strip Mining for Oil in Endangered Forests
Fact Sheet

Big oil interests are scraping away hundreds of thousands of acres in North America’s Boreal forest to produce tar sands oil, and in the process consuming large amounts of natural gas and generating three times as much global warming pollution as conventional crude oil production. Greater efficiency and renewable fuels are far better, cleaner ways to meet our energy needs.

If You Don't Buy African Ivory, Why Would You Buy Amazon Mahogany?
Fact Sheet

High consumer demand for mahogany has boosted prices and the illegal trade of these majestic trees from Peru to the United States, bringing disastrous impacts for indigenous peoples who rely on the forests, endangered species losing their habitat, and the long-term viability of commercial mahogany.

The U.S. Navy's Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) Training Exercise Poses Significant Danger to Hawaii's Environment and Marine Life
Letter

Letter to NMFS Re: Proposed Incidental Take Authorization for the U.S. Navy's Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) Training Exercise, May 24, 2006

Native Groups Request a Halt to Trade in Illegal Amazon Mahogany
Letter

A letter sent to the U.S. government and U.S. wood importers on April 3, 2006 by the Federacion Nativa del Río Madre de Dios y Afluentes, a group representing 27 native Peruvian communities and indigenous people living in voluntary isolation.

Sounding the Depths II: The Rising Toll of Sonar, Shipping and Industrial Ocean Noise on Marine Life
Report

Most whales and many other marine species depend on sound as they hunt for food, avoid predators, find mates, and maintain their awareness in the darkness of the sea. But over the past century the acoustic landscape of the ocean has been transformed by human activity -- intensely loud military sonar, oil-and-gas surveys, and the ever-increasing traffic of commercial ships. This noise can have impacts on marine life ranging from long-term behavioral change to hearing loss to death. This November 2005 second edition of NRDC's groundbreaking 1999 report on ocean noise has been completely rewritten to reflect the rapid growth of the scientific record. It reviews the science, surveys the leading contributors to the problem, and suggests what might be done to reduce the impacts of noise on the sea -- before the proliferation of noise sources makes the problem unmanageable.

An Alternative Path to Grizzly Recovery in the Lower 48 States
Issue Paper

This May 2004 NRDC policy paper outlines a practical plan for restoring grizzly bear populations in the lower 48 states by preserving grizzly habitat, anticipating and resolving conflicts between humans and bears and increasing public participation in grizzly protection. The paper presents an alternative to the current U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service plan for grizzly protection.

Department of Interior Letter to Wyoming Fish and Game – January 2004
Letter

This letter was sent to the State of Wyoming noting that significant concerns over the state’s wolf management plan could affect the effort to remove wolves from the Endangered Species List and that the Wyoming wolves could not be separated from the larger Northern Rockies population that also includes animals in Idaho and Montana.

A Common Vision for Transforming the Paper Industry: Striving for Environmental and Social Sustainability
Issue Brief

Pulp and paper production, consumption and wasting have many negative environmental and social impacts. The pulp and paper industry is among the world’s largest generators of air and water pollutants, waste products, and the gases that cause climate change. It is also one of the largest users of raw materials, including fresh water, energy, and forest fibers. Forests that are essential for clean air and water, wildlife habitat, climate protection, spirituality, recreation and indigenous peoples’ cultural survival—including old-growth and other ecologically important forests—are being logged for fiber; in many places they also are being cleared for replacement by plantations that have reduced ecological value and employ toxic chemical herbicides and fertilizers.

This document, drafted by the Center for a New American Dream, Conservatree, Co-op America, Dogwood Alliance, Environmental Defense, ForestEthics, the Green Press Initiative, the Markets Initiative, Natural Resources Defense Council, the Recycled Products Purchasing Cooperative, calls upon the paper industry to adopt the ‘Precautionary Principle’ with regard to the use of natural resources and chemicals throughout the production process and to refrain from activities that could potentially cause irreparable harm to human health and the environment.

America's Gas Tank: The High Cost of Canada's Oil and Gas Export Strategy
Report

Canada, not Saudi Arabia, is the single largest supplier of oil and gas to the United States. This October 2002 report from NRDC and the Sierra Club of Canada shows that U.S. demand for fossil fuels is destroying Canadian air, land and water resources. Oil and gas production, driven by an insatiable demand south of the border, is threatening huge swaths of Canadian wilderness and marine areas, increasing greenhouse gas emissions, and exposing millions of Canadians in rural areas to dangerous air emissions. Canada needs to aggressively adopt renewable energy sources, protect wilderness areas from fossil fuel exploitation, pass tougher laws to limit pollution from the oil and gas industry, and ratify the Kyoto agreement to reduce global warming pollution.

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