America’s Lands for America’s People

The timelessness of the Grand Canyon, the remote solitude of Alaska’s wild frontier, the majesty of the Great Smoky Mountains — America’s public lands are national treasures owned by all of us and held in trust for us and for future generations. They include more than 600 million acres of towering forests, rushing rivers, swaying grasslands and beautiful deserts.

These National Parks, forests, wildlife refuges and other wild lands are essential havens for wildlife, sources for clean water, and recreational spaces for Americans all across the country. More than 307 million people visited National Parks last year, a new record high, and even more hiked, camped, fished, watched wildlife, and enjoyed other public lands like national forests and wildlife refuges.

Sadly these special places are under attack, so we need your help to make sure these public lands remain in public hands.

Conservation Northwest helps protect brown bear. Photo by Kandace Heimerr, National Wildlife Photo Contest
Conservation Northwest helps protect brown bear. Photo by Kandace Heimerr, National Wildlife Photo Contest

For 26 years, Conservation Northwest, NWF’s newest affiliate, has protected and connected wild lands in Washington State and British Columbia. The organization has successfully led initiatives to conserve millions of acres of wild lands, and is helping restore wolves, grizzly bears, caribou, fisher and other wildlife to their native habitats. Many wildlife species and communities depend upon public lands for habitat and intrinsic value.

Yet, politicians in Washington, D.C. and state legislatures across the nation have proposed bills designed to hand over our public lands to the states or private developers. Their goal is simple: strip public lands of protection and turn them over for private exploitation.

Our beautiful and vast public lands are reserved for the benefit of all, so that everyone can appreciate these natural treasures. Public lands not only give us outdoor recreation opportunities and protect our nation’s fish, wildlife and natural heritage, they also provide strong economic benefits for local communities.

We all have a responsibility to stand up and ensure that our public lands are preserved for future generations. It is now our continuing responsibility to protect and manage these lands and their intrinsic value for future generations. Our public lands are for all Americans today, tomorrow and beyond.

Speak Out for Public Lands

Conservation Northwest is holding a Protect Your Public Lands rally in the National Forest outside Seattle on April 23rd, and a coalition of allies is organizing similar events. Find an event, sign a petition and learn more at

America’s public lands are your public lands.  Join us in protecting this vital national treasure.

Protect Public Lands


About the Author: Jeff Baierlein is Director of Development and Communications at Conservation Northwest, an environmental conservation nonprofit and the National Wildlife Federation affiliate working in the Pacific Northwest.