In just four days, Conservation Alliance member companies raised more than $40,000 to protect wild places! Here are just a few of the highlights…
The Conservation Alliance Breakfast
"To understand a place, you need to drink from its many waters," said author Craig Childs at the Conservation Alliance Breakfast last week. Craig captivated a packed room and inspired people to listen to the stories that water tells us everyday — and protect it while we still have the chance.
The breakfast gives all of us a chance to be inspired and celebrate the victories we have seen in the last year and look ahead to the conservation challenges we must overcome. We are proud to announce that in the last year, our member companies and grantees helped to protect 1.6 million acres and 700 miles of rivers, remove two dams and acquire one climbing area. Last week, the industry also sent its appreciation to Secretary of Interior Ken Salazar for his decision to preserve wild desert landscapes and took the opportunity to highlight through pictures the reason for protecting these lands.
At last week's show, member companies really stepped it up to support the Alliance and because of their help, we will be able to push even more funds into protecting the wild places we love in 2011! Please see below to see how companies did their part…
The Annual Canada Goose Cup raised more than $8,300 for the Alliance. Thank you to all of the teams who participated!
Columbia Sportswear's OR fashion show Twitter promotion raised $4,500 for the Alliance.
Other member companies came together to offer up a huge lineup of awesome gear promotions, with all proceeds going directly to the Alliance. Together, companies raised more than $25,000! Thank you to everyone who helped to make this Winter OR a resounding success. If you'd like to get involved at the summer show, please email firstname.lastname@example.org for more info.
At Outdoor Retailer this week in Salt Lake City? Make sure you schedule time for the Conservation Alliance Breakfast. We're happy to welcome writer Craig Childs, with his presentation The Secret Knowledge of Water. Childs has been steeped in water issues, recently returning from Patagonia where he took part in the Rios Libres initiative, documenting the adventure and beauty of the Rio Baker, scheduled to be dammed in 2013.
"To understand a place, you need to drink from its many waters," wrote Childs during last year's expedition to Patagonia.
When: Friday January 21st, 7-8:50am
Where: Salt Lake City Marriott
Photo: Craig Childs watching a huge chunk of ice falling 20 stories down the Neff Glacier.By James Q. Martin
On Thursday, January 13th, the US Bureau of Land Management announced the designation of more than 11,000 acres of wilderness in Northern California. The Elkhorn Ridge Wilderness Area was classified as potential wilderness in 2006 under the Northern California Costal Wild Heritage Wilderness Act; a victory protecting 275,000 acres of Wilderness and celebrated by Conservation Alliance grantees California Wild Heritage Campaign and California Wilderness Coalition.
These 11,000 acres were to become wilderness as soon as BLM found a 1,500-acre previously acquired private in-holding to be eligible for a Wilderness designation or five years passed since the act's signing. On Thursday, the BLM found the area to have naturally rehabilitated itself from years of timber cutting, making it compatible with the Wilderness Act. This Wilderness designation grants permanent protection for the 11,000 acre Elkhorn Ridge area and 7 miles of the South Fork Eel River.
"The Elkhorn Ridge Potential Wilderness Area appears to have been affected primarily by the forces of nature and exhibits outstanding opportunities for solitude and primitive and unconfined recreation," BLM announced in the Federal Register. "Although some traces of past logging operations and associated road construction remain, the BLM has determined that the benefits of mechanized restoration are outweighed by the adverse impacts of such mechanized restoration on wilderness character."
West Virginia is celebrating! The largest single mountaintop removal mining permit in the US, Spruce No.1 Mine, was vetoed by the US Environmental Protection Agency on Thursday, January 13th.
Conservation Alliance grantee, Appalachian Voices, has been instrumental in protecting the 2,300 acres and six miles of headwater streams surrounding the proposed Spruce No.1 Mine.
EPA officials said their agency is "acting under the law and using the best science available to protect water quality, wildlife and Appalachian communities who rely on clean waters for drinking, fishing and swimming."
Each year The Access Fund presentsThe Sharp End Award to individuals and businesses going above and beyond to preserve climbing access and the climbing environment.
REI, a Conservation Alliance founding member and long time steward of our wild places, received The Sharp End award this year because of a long-term dedicate to protecting the places we climb. REI's support of both the Adopt a Crag program and the TeamWorks youth stewardship program has grown local volunteerism and long-term stewardship of climbing areas tremendously. In 2010, REI increased their support of the climbing community through the REI VISA card and proceeds from BANFF Mountain Film Festival.
Read the whole article and learn about other award recipients here.
We are pleased to announce that Merrell has increased their commitment to The Conservation Alliance by becoming our newest Pinnacle Member. Pinnacle Members contribute at least $100,000 annually to the Alliance.
"Merrell's brand cause is about getting people outside," said Craig Throne, vice president of global marketing for Merrell. "To help drive that effort we make protecting our natural places a priority as they will inspire current and future generations to recreate in the outdoors. The Conservation Alliance is leading this effort and we are proud to extend our support to a Pinnacle level to help defend our natural outdoor playground."
Merrell first joined The Conservation Alliance in 2001, and has been a rock-solid member ever since. When we launched our Legacy Fund endowment campaign in 2008, Merrell dove right in, committing $500,000 toward our $3.5-million goal. With the Pinnacle commitment, Merrell again demonstrates its unflinching dedication to protecting North America's wild places.
"We are thrilled that Merrell has stepped up to the Pinnacle Member level," said John Sterling, executive director of The Conservation Alliance. "Merrell is a leader in our industry, and with this commitment, they demonstrate an above-and-beyond commitment to protecting the wild places so important to outdoor consumers."
The Conservation Alliance launched the Pinnacle member level in August 2010. With the addition of Merrell, we now have six Pinnacle members: Merrell; Patagonia; The North Face; REI; Eastern Mountain Sports; and KEEN, Inc. Their commitments will ensure that we contribute more than $1 million to conservation organizations for the first time in 2011.
Huge thanks to Merrell, and to ALL the companies that make The Conservation Alliance such a critical piece of the outdoor industry's commitment to land and water conservation.
The first day of the 112th Congress is now history; and written into that history is great news for Wilderness. During the first day of this new Congressional term, two important California Wilderness bills were introduced.
Representative David Dreier (Republican of Rancho Cucamonga) introduced the "Angeles and San Bernardino National Forests Protection Act" which, when passed, will enlarge the Cucamonga and Sheep Mountain Wilderness Areas in the San Gabriel Mountains by approximately 18,000 acres.
Representative Darrell Issa (Republican of Vista) reintroduced the "Beauty Mountain and Agua Tibia Wilderness Act," which, when passed, will add over 7,000 acres to the Agua Tibia Wilderness and 13,635 acres to the Beauty Mountain Wilderness.
The introduction of these two bills is a great first step toward the protection of almost 40,000 acres of Wilderness in California and is due in large part to the unyielding efforts of Conservation Alliance Grantee, California Wilderness Coalition.
To learn more about the work of the California Wilderness Coalition, click here.
Two days before Christmas, at Conservation Alliance member Recreation Equipment, Inc's flagship store in Denver, CO, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar announced an important policy change; the Bureau of Land Management is now directed to identify and maintain an updated inventory of lands with wilderness characteristics.
This announcement is not only important because it allows the BLM to plan for potential future Wilderness designations by ensuring that certain lands maintain Wilderness qualities until Congress can act; it is also an important announcement for the health of our economy.
Wilderness protection provides economic benefit for local communities. Hunters, anglers, hikers, campers and all types of recreational enthusiasts are eager to spend money and create jobs near areas with adventure potential.