Protecting Our Natural Treasures

This Week in NWF History

Since 1936, the National Wildlife Federation has worked to conserve the nation’s wildlife and wild places. As part of our 80th anniversary celebration, we are recognizing important moments in our history that continue to make an impact today.

NWF uses NEPA to help protect wild places such as public lands. Photo by Aaron Kindle/NWF
A monumental environmental law was enacted in January 1970 thanks to the efforts of the National Wildlife Federation and other environmental conservation groups. This law, the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) was one of the first to create a broad national framework for protecting the environment. NEPA requires that all federal government agencies perform environmental assessments and, where appropriate, environmental impact statements before starting any major federal action that significantly affects the environment.

As a longtime champion for the National Environmental Policy Act, the National Wildlife Federation and our affiliates work to ensure that major decisions – those impacting public lands, waters, wetlands and energy development projects – carefully consider impacts to wildlife and habitat, and consider alternatives that are more wildlife-friendly to better protect our natural heritage.

NWF and our valued members and supporters have been active voices in the fight to stop the Keystone XL pipeline and the Alberta Clipper line from harming our wildlife and wild places. Pipelines like these would increase the U.S.’s dependence on dirty fuels and drive a massive expansion of oil mining operations in Canada. In November 2015, our call was answered as President Obama took an historic step to help protect wildlife like moose, caribou, and waterfowl from destructive, climate disrupting tar sands oil and extreme fossil fuels by rejecting the ill-conceived Keystone XL pipeline.

The rejection of the Keystone XL pipeline benefits wildlife like moose. Photo by National Wildlife Photo Contest entrant Dick Forehand
Although the Keystone XL pipeline was rejected, there’s still more work to do. With the strong foundation from laws like the NEPA, we can work together to stop pipelines and other environmental threats, including carbon pollution from power plants, that would negatively impact wildlife and habitat. Wildlife need our help!

Take Action

Help NWF continue our efforts to protect moose and other wildlife from pollution threats!