Bay Area Backyard Collective Event – The Movie!

The first Backyard Collective was a great success!  83 employees from seven Bay Area outdoor industry companies worked together to restore wetland habitat in Martin Luther King Jr. Shoreline Park. Conservation Alliance member companies sponsoring the event included The North Face, Clif Bar, REI, Mountain Hardwear, Camelbak, Wilderness Press and Ahnu Footwear.

Check out this short video that made its debut at the Winter Outdoor Retailer Show at The Conservation Alliance Breakfast.

We look forward to future Backyard Collective gatherings.  Check back to our Events page to learn about events coming to your backyard.

New York Times Pushes for Wilderness Bill

Last week, the US Senate approved legislation to protect 2 million acres of Wildernes, 1000 miles of rivers, and halt new energy leases on the 1.2-million-acre Wyoming Range. It's now up to the House to pass the bill, and send it on to President Obama for his signature.

The New York Times today urged the House to act swiftly. Click here for the full editorial.

Form vs. Function and PR 2.0

This is a great post from The Verteblog that shows the importance of having a clear communication strategy around your sustainability plan:


Newton Running has recently been featured in dozens of environmental and packaging blogs (yes, blogs about packaging) with a story about their cool, eco-friendly, molded pulp shoeboxes. The story reached a fever pitch with a re-post on

One problem though, Newton never actually produced those shoeboxes.

Click here for the full story  –

Outdoor Industry Employees Get Their Hands Dirty In The Name of Conservation.


When looking at our world today, it is easy to feel overwhelmed. I definitely do. And to often have that feeling that you want to help save our planet and the environment in some way but you are not sure exactly how to do it.The outdoor industry is one industry that should have the answers to these questions at their finger tips. We are actively encouraging our consumers to get out there and enjoy the beauty of the great outdoors. With that encouragement we should also be helping individuals find a way to give back, protect, and restore the places they are recreating in. And we, those who work in the outdoor industry, should be the ones setting the example.

This past week the outdoor industry and The Conservation Alliance answered the call. On Friday January 9th, The Conservation Alliance launched the first ConservationNEXT Backyard Collective event. ConservationNEXT is a program of The Conservation Alliance working to connect individuals in the outdoor industry with the work of organizations that receive financial support from the Alliance. The Backyard Collective is a roaming series of on the ground events that connects outdoor company employees to volunteer opportunities run by environmental organizations in their area.

At 9:00 am employees from The North Face, Camelbak, Clifbar, REI, Mountain Hardwear, Ahnu Footwear, and Wilderness Press joined together at Martin Luther King Shoreline Park in Oakland, California to help restore the native wetlands. Save The Bay, a local bay area nonprofit, helped organize the volunteers who spent the morning collecting 103 pounds of trash and the afternoon planting 864 native seedlings in the park.

Volunteers gathered for a midday barbeque and volunteer fair where representatives from Conservation Alliance grantees: California Wilderness Coalition, Friends of the River, Friends of the Inyo, and The Wilderness Society shared information about their organization and ways for volunteers to further their environmental conservation efforts.

"The event was a great success" said Brook Shinsky, co founder of ConservationNEXT and employee of The North Face. "ConservationNEXT set out to engage individuals of the outdoor industry with environmental organizations in their communities. The Backyard Collective is a great example of companies and people working together to not only further support the work of Conservation Alliance grantees but to get out in their own backyard and help support local environmental initiatives. It was a truly inspiring day." provides people with opportunities to take online action in support of conservation. The Backyard Collective moves that action to the field, and helps people get their hands dirty in their own communities. Be sure to visit, become a NEXTer, to find out when the next Backyard Collective is coming to your hometown.


Senate Passes Huge Public Lands Package

By a vote of 73-21, the US Senate passed a package of public lands bills that will protect two million acres of Wilderness, designate 1000 miles of Wild and Scenic Rivers, and prohibit energy development on 1.2 million acres in Wyoming. The legislation now heads to the House of Representatives where it is expected to pass soon. The Conservation Alliance has invested heavily in the grassroots organizing and awareness raising campaigns that motivated Congress to act on thes protective measures. The package is the most comprehensive public lands protection measure we've seen in many, many years. Click here for a summary of the provisions in the bill that the Alliance has funded.

We'll keep you posted as things proceed in the House.

TAKE ACTION: Senate to Vote on Huge Public Lands Bill

A large package of public lands bills was introduced into the Senate last week that would protect more than two million acres of land and 1000 miles of rivers throughout the US. More than a dozen projects funded by The Conservation Alliance are included in the package. Provisions include: new Wilderness designations in Oregon, California, Idaho, Utah, Colorado, and West Virginia; Wild and Scenic River designations for streams in Oregon, California, Wyoming, and Idaho; and a prohibition on new oil and gas leases on the 1.2-million-acre Wyoming Range.

The Senate voted on Sunday to open debate on the bill, and we expect a full vote sometime this week. Please take a minute to call your Senators TODAY and urge them to vote for S. 22, the Omnibus Public Lands Management Act.

Click here for a full summary of the provisions in this historic legislation.

Take That, BLM! Terry Tempest Williams on Proposed Utah Gas Drilling

Our friend Terry Tempest Williams, who spoke at a Conservation Alliance event in 2007, responded eloquently in a Los Angeles Times op-ed to the BLM's proposal to sell gas leases adjacent to Utah's spectacular National Parks. Her piece concludes:

"The last-minute land grab in Utah's spectacular desert must be seen for what it is: not a boon for business but a bankruptcy of the imagination. What is actually being sold is the soul of a nation, one public parcel at a time."

I strongly encourage you to click here for the full article.

On a related note, you may have heard that Tim DeChristopher, a college student in Salt Lake City, monkeywrenched the BLM gas lease auction by bidding on many leases that he never intended to pay for. His actions cost other bidders hundreds of thousands of dollars, and prevented 22,500 acres of public lands from being sold to energy development.

Click here to read DeChristopher's explanation of why he did what he did.


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