Our Blog

Redefining Conservation

July 20, 2021|By The Conservation Fund
Photo by Steve Orr.

Mikki Sager’s impact on The Conservation Fund and the communities in North Carolina cannot be overstated. As she retires after three decades with us, we reflect on how her work with Resourceful Communities, a program she helped launch, has authentically woven social justice into our approach to conservation.

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July 12, 2021|By Kelsi Eccles
Photo credit: Kelsi Eccles

Earlier this year the Urban Food Forest at Browns Mill captivated a global audience around the idea of a free food forest built to address food access and health issues for residents in the community. Sitting just a few miles south of Atlanta’s city center, the Browns Mill community has historically struggled to get access to fresh fruits and vegetables. The food forest now provides many of those residents with fresh healthy food, greenspace, and educational and workforce opportunities.

We spoke with Celeste Lomax, Food Forest Steward and owner of Celestial Care Solutions, about why this greenspace is so important, what it means to provide fresh produce and holistic care for her community and what other urban conservation organizations can learn from her success.

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July 6, 2021|By Val Keefer
Grizzly bear in Montana. Photo courtesy of Debs via flickr.

Although they’ve been on the endangered species list for decades, grizzly bears have always found refuge on Montana’s Rocky Mountain Front—a pristine landscape made up of mostly private ranchlands. Today, these ranchers and their woolly tenants aim to successfully co-exist.

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July 1, 2021|By The Conservation Fund
Photo by Jay Brittain.

The Conservation Fund’s annual report highlights our work at its best—innovative, solution-oriented and committed to addressing America’s most pressing conservation challenges. In 2020, we delivered on our commitment to create a better and more sustainable future for all Americans despite formidable challenges.  

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June 14, 2021|By The Conservation Fund
Photo courtesy Venture Out Project.

During the month of June, celebrations of LGBTQ+ Pride fill cities and towns across the country. Beyond the rainbow flags and festivities, it is important to recognize the history of how and why Pride month exists. We are sharing this history and spotlighting organizations working to ensure nature is an equitable, welcoming place for all because we too share that hope.

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June 3, 2021|By Phillip Howard

Recently designated one of America's 11 Most Endangered Historic Places by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, three campsites in Alabama not only tell the story of those who made the dangerous march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama in 1965, but of those who took great risk to provide the marchers with shelter and safety.

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May 24, 2021|By Eric Wuestewald
Photo courtesy of Volkswagen.

As part of our partnership with Volkswagen of America to award selected Tennessee nonprofit organizations with grants to enhance community and environmental goals, we also unveiled a unique mural in downtown Chattanooga by artist Steffi Lynn. The expansive artwork proudly borrows from the Tennessee landscape and serves as a reminder to care for the environment by proudly proclaiming “Change Starts in Your Own Backyard.” We sat down with Steffi to learn about her process, how she finds inspiration in nature, and why the mural’s message is important to her. Read on to learn more.

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May 17, 2021|By Kurt Ikeda
Photo by Richard Alan Hannon.

Minidoka National Historic Site in Idaho protects the history and land where over 13,000 Japanese Americans were forcibly incarcerated during World War II. Minidoka’s story of racial prejudice and civil rights violations presents many relevant lessons for our current moment in history. Learn more from Kurt Ikeda, acting Chief of Interpretation and Education at Minidoka, who has both personal and professional connections to this tragic legacy that must not be forgotten. 

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May 13, 2021|By Will Allen
Photo by Stacy Funderburke.

As a follow up to the Executive Order to commit to conserving at least 30% of our lands and waters by the year 2030, the Biden Administration released the preliminary report of the National Climate Task Force entitled “Conserving and Restoring America the Beautiful,” which recommends a ten-year campaign to conserve and restore lands in the U.S. Will Allen, a Senior Vice President of The Conservation Fund, discusses how this campaign shapes the nation’s conservation priorities and how the Land and Water Conservation Fund and Great American Outdoors Act remain key to implementation.

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May 3, 2021|By Dr. Liz Rutledge
Photo by Tim Smith.

If you’ve ever been to the Great Smoky Mountains, you’ve probably driven on Interstate 40, which bisects the Pigeon River Gorge in North Carolina and Tennessee. Something you may not have thought about on this drive, is that wildlife also needs this corridor to live. Unfortunately, this busy interstate has seen a 43% increase in traffic since 2005, which has led to more animals being hit and killed by vehicles. The Smokies Safe Passage initiative is building a new solution to help change this—saving the wildlife that need to take the dangerous journey across I-40.

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April 26, 2021|By The Marlborough Community Coalition
Photo by Ivan LaBianca.

Welcome to Marlborough. This vibrant community in the southeast section of Kansas City, Missouri is home to about 10,000 people and covers five connected neighborhoods spread over two and a half square miles. Today, Marlborough residents can meet at their community center, enjoy walking on more than two miles of consecutive sidewalks connecting three different greenspaces, and let their children run and climb at the playground. This urban community’s struggles with stormwater and sewer flooding, trash dumping, lack of greenspace, and general neglect have been greatly improved over the last decade, thanks in great part to the efforts of the Marlborough Community Coalition.

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April 22, 2021|By Claire Robinette Cooney
Photo by Jay Brittain.

Today, on the 51st annual Earth Day, we hope you can get outdoors and remember what inspires you about nature. To celebrate Earth Day, your online gift will be matched dollar-for-dollar today 4/22 and tomorrow 4/23!

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April 15, 2021|By The Conservation Fund
Photo by Whitney Flanagan.

At The Conservation Fund, we work all year long to protect and uplift success stories about nature, but this month we are particularly excited to celebrate Earth Day with many of our partners in communities across the country. Here’s a short list of some events that we hope inspire you to think about your local environment and how it fits into the larger global network. Let’s all get outdoors this week and do some good!

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April 12, 2021|By Larry Selzer
Pat Noonan and Rich Erdmann

Something important happened in 1973. Yes, Secretariat won the Triple Crown, and the Endangered Species Act was signed into law. The Sting, starring Paul Newman and Robert Redford, was released to great acclaim, and in what clearly was one of the most profound actions of the year, Martin Cooper of Motorola placed the first public cell phone call to a rival engineer at Bell Labs. But something else happened in 1973 that also was profound, and that was when the Genius met the General. 

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April 6, 2021|By Bobbi Reierson

As we look forward to celebrating Earth Day later this month, we also want to celebrate the donors that help make our work possible. We couldn’t do this work without them! Hear about what motivates our supporters to give to The Conservation Fund on Earth Day and all year long.

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April 5, 2021|By Eric Wuestewald
Blakeley Bluff overlooking the Tensaw River. Photo by Beth Maynor Finch.

Fort Blakeley in Alabama is the most important Civil War story you’ve likely never heard. Due to the land’s historical and ecological value, a significant portion of the battlefield—where U.S. Colored Troops resoundingly defeated Confederate forces in April 1865—was permanently protected in 2020. Learn more about the incredible history and ecological importance of this site and how we protected it.

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March 29, 2021|By The Conservation Fund
Photo by Jerry Monkman

Technology will play a critical role in the fight against climate change, but that’s not enough. In this recent article featured on Our Daily Planet, our CEO and President Larry Selzer shares his thoughts about how we must shift our traditional understanding of “technology” to include both promising manmade solutions AND naturally existing solutions like forests to remove harmful carbon from the atmosphere.

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March 22, 2021|By Eric Wuestewald
The Conservation Fund’s Resourceful Communities program has long worked with unsung heroes in rural areas working to sustainably redevelop their communities. The incredibly creative and impactful work of these grassroots groups is carried out every single day to address the social justice, economic and environmental needs in their communities – just because it’s the right thing to do.

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