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The Wilderness Society is the leading American conservation organization working to protect our nation’s public lands, the 635 million acres collectively owned by the American people and managed by our government. From well-known icons to hidden gems, these lands provide us all with clean air and water; abundant wildlife; havens for recreation, learning, and solitude; and a foundation for a healthy planet. They are also important sources of renewable energy and vital natural resources that must be managed wisely.
Since its founding in 1935, The Wilderness Society has led the effort to permanently protect as designated Wilderness nearly 110 million acres in 44 states, from rich hardwood forests in the east, stunning deserts in the southwest, and snowcapped peaks in the Rockies to old-growth forests in the Pacific Northwest and tundra in Alaska. From the revolutionary 1964 Wilderness Act to the landmark 2009 bill that permanently protected more than two million acres of wilderness across the country, The Wilderness Society has been at the forefront of nearly every major public lands victory over the past 75 years. Our work has profoundly improved the way our shared national lands are managed and enjoyed.
We bring a unique breadth of expertise to public lands issues: our staff are recognized leaders in the fields of natural resource science, policy, economics, and outreach. From Capitol Hill and federal agencies to communities across the nation, we work strategically and collaboratively with land managers, decision makers, and other interested citizens to find common-ground solutions. These solutions – tested on the ground and embodied in national policy -- lead to better protection, stewardship and restoration of our public lands, preserving our rich natural legacy for current and future generations.
Today, with more than 500,000 active members and supporters, The Wilderness Society continues its vital mission to protect wilderness and inspire Americans to care for our wild places.