Real People, Real Stories
Every day across the country, courageous people are speaking out for the natural world to protect their families, their communities and their livelihoods. Read real stories about how everyday people are using their outside voices to make a difference – then join our cause.
“There can be no greater issue than that of conservation in this country.” –Theodore Roosevelt, 1912
“I use my outside voice because if we can increase the amount of green space, nature has a better chance of thriving.”
Seventh Grader - Pennsylvania
“I use my outside voice any chance to evoke action, transform attitudes, and spur real change.”
Ohio State University Graduate - Clintonville, Ohio
“I use my outside voice because living in this unique valley is totally natural and amazing with all it has to offer!”
North East, Pennsylvania
“It’s my duty to speak out and share my experiences and hopefully my story can make a difference.”
Volunteer TIS Support - TNC in Missouri
“It’s important to speak about what you believe in.”
Community-college science professor and bird-watcher - Adirondacks, New York
“People are looking for places that retain a sense of character.”
Former Mayor of Palm Desert, California - Palm Valley, California
“We are profoundly connected to nature whether we know it or not.”
Student, Rice University - Houston, Texas
“Speak up for the importance of traditional lands.”
Native Hawaiian - Kahuku Ranch, Hawaii
“Everyone should use their voices, their bodies, their minds to take action on behalf of nature.”
Member of Team Nature and new father - Long Island, NY
“Learn about issues like where your drinking water comes from.”
Environmental science teacher - Danville, Pennsylvania
“Support all types of life – not just animals, not just land, but everything in between.”
Student - East Hartford, Connecticut
“Someone has to speak for future generations.”
Water district manager, father and hunter - Cumberland Plateau, Tennessee
“If you abuse the land, it’s not going to be here for the next generation.”
Retired farmer, county judge and avid boater - Crittenden County, Kentucky
“Take a hike with your friends or family – show them what inspires you.”
Restoration enthusiast - Boyds, Maryland
“Sometimes, conservation awareness can be raised simply by speaking up.”
New York City LEAF Intern - Queens, New York
“Sometimes the things that are most important are the things we take for granted.”
New York City LEAF Alumnus - Poughkeepsie, New York
Everyone has a story to tell. How are changes in your local wildernesses, parks and special places affecting you and your community? What special places do you think should be saved forever? What natural treasures do you value in your own community and want to pass on to the next generation? Share your story -- speak up for nature to help save the places we love!
The Great Barrier Reef is in trouble because of people involved in their government, care only for profits of coal. They want to destroy it by mining there. Their fruit bats are being hunted and blown up because they are noisey and the bat eat the peoples produce, there are ways to prevent them from going on their farms and being around their homes, but they figure it's easier to just destroy them. In the Faroe Islands, dolphins are being killed by young men, who's beliefs are: if they kill a dolphin, they become men. The waters turn blood red. The country of Japan is a very creative and powerful country. One of their small cities has been put in the dark for over 30 years by a small town called Taiji, where their fishermen are consumed by greed and kill 10's of thousands of dolphins a year. They sell a small percent of them a year to water parks such as Sea Worlds around the globe. These Taiji fishermen poison their country and have for many years. Feeding their people dolphin meat, which contains much more mercury than the normal tuna. People who interfere with the fishing there are deported, or arrested and put in jail because it happens to be legal and the police there, protect their port, and are sadly protecting the evil that the fishermen ensue. Once the dolphin season is over, they move on to whaling. In China there are many people there that are also creative and powerful. Yet, they have many horrible medical beliefs that cause problems to animals. Capturing endangered sun bears and other bears for their bile, is one of them. Their fur farms do no good for anyone. What is this the stone-age? The animals there are treated TERRIBLY before they are skinned alive and left to die a painful death. Tigers are killed to make TIGER WINE and other useless products! Also in China, ALL of their products have to be animal tested. Venezuela is a poor country, but they do a lot of good around USA. Their people give our people in need, oil to fuel our houses, that doesn't cost us a dime. I know they're being paid by someone for their good deeds, but YET, still live in poverty. They deserve a better life there. Our Rainforests and the animals in it, are going endangered or extinct due to loss of habitat. Trees there are being cut down left and right. We need to keep our Rainforests full and flourished to keep order of the trees and animals that thrive there. For every tree cut down, one should be planted! African Savannas are being tormented by poachers and their greed! Many African animals are going extinct due to supply and demand of horns, tusks, coats, other animal parts, and trophy hunting. Many National Parks are in danger of poachers, loss of habitat, and oil profits. Animals that cross the park line of Yellowstone, are shot by poachers. People of India are in a bind, they live in crowded conditions in their cities. They're over-populated. Their small villages are in danger as well, tigers there, are running out of food in the wild, possibly because of animal loss due to poor habitats. The tigers sometimes have no choice, but to kill and eat people. It's illegal to hunt the tigers there. So, they have to just die? Perhaps there should be fences there to protect the people of small villages in India. The North and South Poles and Antarctica are in danger from global warming. Polar bears are having a hard enough time surviving there with the ice melting beneath their feet, but now they are being trophy hunted as well. Our oceans and seas are polluted with garbage and waste, which much of it could be recycled. Whales and dolphins are captured or killed. Near Canadian waters people are clubbing seals.
Things have to change, and no one wants to hear about it, because they're making good money by destroying the environment, the animals, and people in it! I believe there's a way to open their eyes, but i'm afraid the only time they finally will is when it's too late for these amazing people, places, and creatures!
I try to sign online votes to enhance, protect, and nurture the environment whenever I get the chance.
I try to read and learn about the environment.
I try to read and learn about oppositional entities to see what their viewpoints are so I see both sides of the story.
I try to be compassionate, empathetic, understanding in what I believe.
I try to stand up for the environment those living beings/creatures that can't plus the earth.
I try to educate in kind ways.
My focus on saving what is left of our environment in Pennsylvania is to address the rapidly acceleration of the "industrialization" of the entire state. This is evidenced EVERY day by the continued expansion of the Marcellus gas drilling / fracking and the proliferation of more HUGE electric power distribution lines. Just within a five mile radius of my home near Thornhurst, PA we are seeing the construction of ANOTHER huge power line by PP&L that will now go through AND segment the Lackawanna State Forest. It will also cross 13 native brook trout stream that have been classified as "exceptional value" by the state. Also within this five mile radius is the expansion of HUGE gas transmission pipelines by Williams Company to provide Marcellus gas to New York and New Jersey. This week we learned that a water treatment company wants to build a "fracking water" recovery plant in an area in Luzerne County (Lake Township) that is zoned agriculture. This plant will separate the radioactive solids and chemical laden substance from the frack water and then dispose it in a landfill. This plant is in the watershed of the Ceasetown Dam that provides drinking water to 100,000 residents. This level of "industrialization" MUST be stopped!
I became obsessed with environmentla issues on the very first Earth Day in 1970, as a seventh grader in Detroit public schools. I walked home that day, picking up litter all the way, in spite of the teasing of my classmates. In high school, I started a petition to ban aerosols (due to ozone depletion). I majored in Environmental Communications at Univ. of Michigan and later Landscape Architecture, becoming a parks and rec and community planner. I am finishing up a Master's of Public Administration, focusing on Emergency Management Planning in the hopes of helping communities adapt to climate change.
The Lookout Pack was the first documented reproductively successful
Wolf pack in Washington State. They have chosen a non-Wilderness watershed,adjacent to their Chelan-Sawtooth Wilderness summer range,
as their winter home. They have managed this in spite of severe poaching losses. We are therefore seeking Wilderness protection for the Lookout Roadless Area, and anyway anyone can help us with this would be greatly appreciated. We've started a web site, and have contacted our local Wilderness Society representatives. This will however be a political effort, thus our need for additional help.
Benton Harbor Michigan
My father and mother operated a sawmill / pallet business for their income. We depended upon loggers for our logs but we frequently went to local woodlots for our own.
We often cleaned up woodlots that had storm damage. I also enjoyed "select" cutting where I had the challenge of harvesting mature trees while doing as little damage as possible to the rest of the woodlot.
The jobs I hated were the ones where landowners were planning to clear a woodlot. We were directed to take everything we could use; the rest would be burned. Clear cutting still goes on and is unsustainable.
It's not just the Amazon forest that need protection; owners of small woodlots need incentives to keep their habitats alive. I live on a property with a woods that spreads across the properties of many other owners. Owners of this woodland do not qualify for easements because no one owns enough acreage. In order to protect the whole forest there needs to be incentive for those who own just a piece of the valuable land otherwise it will disappear chunk by chunk.
That there is very little the president is doing to ENFORCE - yes FORCE - these COUNTY officials to make the necessary changes to protect american's requests, rather plea's, for assistance to help our efforts towards conservation. All these county officials (in MINNESOTA at least specially ANOKA COUNTY AND SURROUNDING RURAL AREAS THAT NEED IT MOST) do is hold onto funds and deny every single application or request for assistance without fair or just cause time and time again. The published data is proven if you actually study the data, its bogus, invalid, untrustworthy, and frankly I wonder why they continually get away with it. Where are the people looking out for the budget, at least, you'd think if nobody cares about our land, animals, water quality, and all that it affects, then it seems the root of all evil, money, they should care about! They attempt to bury the appropriate access for the public to access what rightfully has been allocated to the states; however, once located after a mind bending search, you are left with a prudent denial that makes my nine year old appear more educated than those in these decision making positions! Just a shame! I pray for our children that they have a shred of land to play on that is not contaminated and stretching it with possibly a bird off in the near distance perhaps in a bare tree....if they're lucky at this rate we're forced to move at now! We need certain types of character traits within the hired for certain positions not certain skills for certain positions, bottom line. The president needs to give the citizens a chance directly to apply for assistance instead of having to go through county authority for funds, the entire process to get funding is a nightmare! Either make the process for requesting funds more efficient and streamlined or remove the ineffective parties from decision making before it's too late! Everyone knows what's going to happen if we do not take care of our land and oceans; its not going to take a rocket scientist to publish it - for most people - to understand!! It just takes the right people to get the message up and to the right ears what's really going on and where. Thank you!
I grew up on a large ranch in the middle of nowhere and I remember when I was little you could look up at the night sky and the stars would shine like gems, no light pollution whatsoever. Now, the cities are slowly growing and the light that they give is so strong, you can still see the stars clearly, but there is a marked difference. As I've grown up, I see less and less of the beautiful native Texas wildlife, one of the things I miss most were the quail cubbies I used to see roaming as a child. I've traveled all over the world for my job (I work as a computer instructor on cruise ships) and you can markedly see the encroaching of humans all over the world on nature. I believe that we as people are much happier if we are living in green spaces and have access to nature and natural wildlife. I have also found that living closer to nature and having a thought process of trying to limit your footprint as much as you can actually makes me a happier person. Go Planet!!
My name is Kasey and I am a Wilderness First Responder.
Learning to take care of people who have been hurt in the wilderness has made me not only more interested in medicine, but more interested in nature. I am madly in love with the backcountry and am very vocal about conserving our wildlife and our planet. Nothing is more beautiful or sacred than the untouched portions of our world, and I believe that education in the outdoors is crucial to conserving the planet.
My goal is to bring that knowledge to my friends and neighbors, and spread the love and interest that I have in nature across the globe. I am currently attempting to build an awareness group for wildlife conservation, and have involved my workplace with collecting spare change in our tip jar and donating the tips to the Nature Conservancy.
I use my outside voice to educate and conserve.
I know that investing in conservation is the only way we can help keep America beautiful, strong, prosperous and healthy. I am proud to join a community of people who speak up for nature to help save the places we love.