Strengthen grassroots activism for public lands protection by building focused and effective grassroots chapters (Broadbands) and active individual memberships, engaging the leadership of women in communities across the country.
“What helps us face the mess we’re in is the knowledge that each of us has something significant to offer, a contribution to make. In rising to the challenge of playing our best role, we discover something precious that both enriches our lives and adds to the healing of our world.” – Joanna Macy, ecophilosopher and author
The engagement of the public in active protection of public lands is critically important to improve land management and planning. Using proven grassroots organizing techniques, Broadband chapters and members foster visibility and effective advocacy towards the Broads’ mission, through passionate volunteerism and community involvement. Grassroots activism sources its power through building of relationships and community, uniting diverse people over time through shared learning and action.
OUTCOME 1.1: The national office effectively educates and activates members, the general public—and ultimately elected officials—to implement and defend key laws, policies, and funding that protect public lands.
Strategy 1.1.a: Use tools such as the website, Broadsides newsletter, and social media to provide education and opportunities for action.
Strategy 1.1.b: Respond to or initiate time-sensitive calls to action via tools such as email action alerts and targeted communication with Broadband leaders, when Broads’ involvement will have substantive impact on an issue. Use these communication techniques to provide background or additional information to further educate our members on issues.
Strategy 1.1.c: Throughout communications and training, cultivate Broads’ signature brand of fun and humor to attract media attention through devices such as street theatre, playful messaging, and the element of surprise.
OUTCOME 1.2: Broadbands and members are engaged in skilled, informed, and effective activism to protect wild public lands and the laws and policies needed to defend them.
Strategy 1.2.a: Provide targeted education and resources to members and Broadband leaders to deepen their understanding of and engagement in public land issues, grassroots advocacy, wilderness conservation, collaborations, and partnerships.
Strategy 1.2.b: Provide tools and resources to Broadband leaders to support chapter development and leadership, effective communication skills, and program development for chapter growth.
Strategy 1.2.c: Provide guidance to members to strengthen working relationships with elected officials and public land managers at local, state, and federal levels; and improve effectiveness in legislative, administrative, and regulatory processes.
Strategy 1.2.d: Promote strength and continuity of Broadband chapters by showing appreciation and providing support to Broadband leaders; developing co-leadership teams; and encouraging collaborative, horizontal chapter-organizing techniques.
Strategy 1.2.e: Evaluate and assess national office and Broadband education and effectiveness through leader feedback and the Program Committee.
Strategy 1.2.f: Encourage dialogue with those with differing viewpoints on public land management, so as to better understand various perspectives on the nature and sources of public lands threats, thereby leading to durable solutions.
OUTCOME 1.3: Broadbands are established in areas of the country where grassroots activism is essential to defend public lands.
Strategy 1.3.a: Develop a process to determine how to strategically expand Broadbands, considering geographic needs, staff capacity, and areas of high existing membership.
Strategy 1.3.b: Prioritize significant opportunities for grassroots advocacy and stewardship on public lands.
OUTCOME 1.4: Broads serves as a training ground for emerging leaders, decision-makers, and media influencers.
Strategy 1.4.a: Provide high quality grassroots training and resources such as the annual Wilderness Advocacy Leadership Training Sessions (WALTS), annual national and regional Rendezvous leadership retreats, peer leadership calls and webinars, online resources, and individual coaching.
Strategy 1.4.b: Encourage members to join county and state commissions, consensus collaborations, and other opportunities for public lands influence; and, provide internal training and resources to ensure success in these leadership roles.
OUTCOME 1.5: Strong coalitions and partnerships are established to defend public lands and policies, with Broads as active members and catalysts.
Strategy 1.5.a: Assess what can be accomplished with existing partnerships to more effectively accomplish our public lands goals.
Strategy 1.5.b: Create partnerships with new and diverse groups and organizations, such as tribal, youth, recreational (e.g. hunters, anglers), ranchers, land conservancies, and commercial entities aligned with our values.
Keep wild lands wild and the Wilderness Act intact.
“Something will have gone out of us as a people if we ever let the remaining Wilderness be destroyed…We simply need that wild country available to us, even if we never do more than drive to its edges and look in.” – Wallace Stegner
Protect America’s wild public lands from threats to ecological integrity, scenic beauty, cultural resources, natural quiet, and solitude, while defending the key laws and policies that protect these values, such as the Wilderness Act, Antiquities Act, Endangered Species Act, and National Environmental Policy Act.
OUTCOME 2.1: Organizational resources are focused on the greatest threats to wilderness character, ecological integrity, and intrinsic and spiritual values of national public lands.
Strategy 2.1.a: Pursue actions to protect public lands from specific activities that present the greatest risk (e.g. expanded energy extraction, logging, motorized activities, recreational or commercial overuse). Document the effects of these activities on public lands.
Strategy 2.1.b: Prioritize opportunities to creatively solve administrative problems facing specific wild public lands (e.g. improved planning, better enforcement, monitoring and responding to public land conditions, fighting cuts in federal spending for critical agencies).
Strategy 2.1.c: Protect bedrock laws and policies essential to public land protection.
OUTCOME 2.2: Strategic grassroots efforts to defend and advocate for new and expanded wilderness areas, wild and scenic rivers, national monuments, and other protective designations of wild public lands are guided and supported by the national office.
Strategy 2.2.a: Identify and bolster the most critical protection campaigns through communication tools that inspire advocacy, partnership and collaboration with diverse organizations; promote, advocate and conduct grassroots and direct lobbying for new legislation as appropriate; and spotlight campaigns through national and regional events, such as Broadwalks (multi-day educational camping trips.)
Strategy 2.2.b: Provide training for Broadband leaders and members on the different types of wild lands protections, their unique challenges, and methods to develop proposals, advocate, and organize for effective protection.
Strategy 2.2.c: Provide education and communications on the values and ethics of establishing wilderness and other protections for wild public lands, including the culture and language best suited for communications with media, partners, and leadership trainings.
Keep public lands in public hands
“Our public lands — whether a national park or monument, wildlife refuge, forest or prairie — make each one of us land-rich. It is our inheritance as citizens of a country called America.” – Terry Tempest Williams, author and activist
America’s 635 million acres of national public lands are protected by federal laws and owned by all Americans. Efforts to transfer federal lands to states put them at risk of being overdeveloped, made inaccessible, or sold based on ill-conceived policies, narrow ideologies, and short-sighted self-interests. National public lands are more than the dollars generated by energy development, recreational use, and other activities. They are also rich in the cultural and historic values they contain; the clean air and water they generate; the biological wildness and diversity they harbor; and the sense of wonder and amazement they engender. Today, more than ever, these lands are at risk. We must protect these indispensable pieces of America’s heritage.
OUTCOME 3.1: Increased public support for America’s public lands and increased grassroots leadership that is both knowledgeable and effective at defending the concept and value of federally managed public lands.
Strategy 3.1.a: Provide education to members, Broadband leaders, and the general public to enhance understanding of the history and management of public lands and wilderness: the means by which public lands can be defended or lost and the impacts of losses; the benefits of increased protections; and the policies that protect public lands.
Strategy 3.1.b: Assist Broadbands and members in the development and presentation of educational, advocacy, and stewardship events (such as expert talks and discussions, hikes with a purpose; restoration and monitoring activities; workshops; and regional Broadwalks) to engage their communities in protecting America’s public lands.
OUTCOME 3.2: Grassroots efforts to defend national public lands are encouraged and supported, including how to effectively work with local, state, and federal agencies; legislative bodies, courts, and the presidential administration.
Strategy 3.2.a: Provide education and resources to Broadbands and members on grassroots advocacy methods, effective communications with governmental representatives, and documentation and lobbying skills.
Strategy 3.2.b: Provide opportunities for members to collaborate at state and national levels in defense of public lands.
Make public lands part of the solution to climate change
“Our wild landscapes have been drilled and mined for energy for over a century, but now we know that these very activities are leading to global environmental disaster. We believe land that belongs to the public should serve the public interest. We can choose to keep fossil fuel safely underground while we protect and restore our forests, grasslands, and deserts to minimize climate change and allow public lands the resilience to adapt to those changes we can’t avoid.”
– Shelley Silbert, Executive Director, Great Old Broads for Wilderness
Public lands can serve as a major bulwark against climate change and its effects. Managing public lands for natural carbon sequestration and fossil fuel development is key to developing maximum resilience to the impacts of a changing climate. However, the health of these lands is threatened or weakened by those who oppose federal land management and land protections, or deny the science of climate change. These factions seek to slash agency budgets, rendering them ineffective; limit democratic processes that provide for public involvement; and encourage exploitation of public land resources for short-term gain.
OUTCOME 4.1: Public lands are managed in a way to mitigate, rather than contribute to greenhouse gas emissions and climate change.
Strategy 4.1.a: Track and promote awareness and action on high-impact laws, policies, and projects that affect emissions and carbon sequestration. Support laws to limit and offset emissions, and promote positive renewable energy proposals. Challenge laws and projects that reduce environmental analysis, create new fossil fuel energy infrastructure, or promote the export of fossil fuels.
Strategy 4.1.b: Build grassroots capacity to watchdog fossil fuel leasing through activities such as submitting effective comments, participating in administrative protests, filing appeals and legal challenges, and other means to oppose actions that fail to consider the best available science and full climate costs.
Strategy 4.1.c: Use tools such as agency processes, legislative advocacy, direct action, and litigation to protect public lands’ natural capacity for carbon storage and sequestration.
OUTCOME 4.2: Public lands are managed to maximize the adaptation of species to the impacts of climate change on their habitat.
Strategy 4.2.a: Pursue and promote stewardship, natural resource planning, and legal opportunities to help restore native plant and animal species and their habitat to increase the natural resilience of public lands (e.g., restore beaver populations and native carnivores, reduce livestock grazing impacts).
Strategy 4.2.b: Support and/or initiate efforts to protect interconnected wildlife migration corridors and buffer zones, particularly in areas where habitat changes are anticipated from climate change.