Contact: Amy Lewis FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tel. 303-442-8811, ext. 227
BOULDER, COLORADO, August 14, 2019 – The Sierra Club and Nature Needs Half, an international coalition formed in 2009 to advance the protection of 50% of Earth’s land and seas, proudly announce a new partnership to help halt the Sixth Extinction and provide a feasible and affordable solution to the climate crisis.
With this partnership, Sierra Club joins a host of environmental NGOs, scientists, Indigenous Peoples, and business leaders who have helped shape the Nature Needs Half vision.
This partnership attracts new attention to the necessity of preserving half of Earth’s nature, especially the role of healthy, abundant biodiversity in the production of a stable climate, while placing the goals of indigenous and frontline communities at the forefront.
Both the Sierra Club and Nature Needs Half hope that their alliance will encourage political and business leaders to take advantage of a narrowing window-of-opportunity to transform humanity’s relationship with the natural world for the benefit of life on Earth. Their alliance is formed in advance of two United Nations’ conventions scheduled in 2020, addressing both the climate and biodiversity crisis.
In the wake of surging alarm about the widespread destruction of Earth’s biosphere, many scientists and policy experts are considering ambitious new conservation solutions at a global scale in order to defend Earth’s life-giving, biological processes. Chief among these is the science-based consensus that humanity must protect approximately half of each of Earth’s ecoregions to preserve the nature-based benefits they confer.
“In the U.S., the science shows that we need to protect roughly half our remaining undeveloped natural areas in order to safeguard our outdoors and our climate,” said Dan Ritzman, Lands, Water and Wildlife director for Sierra Club’s Our Wild America campaign. “Sierra Club is dedicated to making sure public lands are part of the climate solution.”
One of the many barriers to achieving environmental policy informed by scientific consensus is a lack of political will. In 2009, at the 9th World Wilderness Congress, the Nature Needs Half movement was launched to overcome that hurdle. Since then, it has built international, cross-sector support for the protection of half of Earth.
Its impact is visible in an April 2019 study which determined that Canadians overwhelmingly support protecting half of nature. Other nations, especially in Western Europe, are also embracing public support for giving nature the space it needs to continue to function for the benefit of all life.
“The Nature Needs Half movement is thrilled to welcome the Sierra Club to the fold – their direct action, science-driven campaigns are the need of the hour and we look forward to working with them to drive our vision of protecting and sustainable managing 50% of the planet.” Swati Hingorani, Nature Needs Half Steering Committee Chairwoman
The new partnership between the Sierra Club, one of America’s most progressive and long-standing environmental organizations, and Nature Needs Half, brings fresh reinforcement to nascent public opinion trends. By working together, both groups are determined to make a global impact that will be felt for generations to come in an enduring and respectful relationship between society and Earth’s irreplaceable wild nature.
About the Sierra Club
The Sierra Club is America’s largest and most influential grassroots environmental organization, with more than 3.5 million members and supporters. In addition to protecting every person’s right to get outdoors and access the healing power of nature, the Sierra Club works to promote clean energy, safeguard the health of our communities, protect wildlife, and preserve our remaining wild places through grassroots activism, lobbying, and legal action. For more information, visit www.sierraclub.org.
About Nature Needs Half
Launched in 2009 at the urging of forward-thinking scientific, Indigenous, and conservation leaders, the Nature Needs Half movement has been the leading edge of a more ambitious conservation movement. This international coalition of scientists, policy experts, conservationists, business leaders, educators, nonprofits, and public officials was formed to strengthen political will for the protection of nature at the scale it needs to continue to function for the benefit of all life on Earth.
Since then, it has stewarded an expanding coalition of committed advocates for policy informed by contemporary scientific consensus and the traditional science of Indigenous Peoples. Nature Needs Half is an open-source movement that encourages people and organizations around the world to adopt its vision. Proud to be the first public call for this science-based necessity for life on earth, Nature Needs Half continues to campaign for the large-scale protection of nature in countries around the world. For more information, please visit www.natureneedshalf.org or contact Amy Lewis at (303) 442-8811, ext. 227.