Environment Now Celebrates 30 Years of Stewardship for California’s Environment

Founded in late December 1989, Environment Now celebrates over 30 years of working to protect and enhance California’s waters, coast, forests, and air. While the work continues, we commend and thank our partners for their incredible successes over these last three decades. We outline some of these shared victories below, and we commit to continued vigilance and support for California’s environment in the future.

Water

Environment Now’s partners have held off the extinction of numerous California species and destruction of waterway habitats through litigation, science, and administrative advocacy. Partner work has contributed to a ten-year average reduction in water capture from the threatened Bay-Delta – critical to both California’s ecological and water supply health – of 1.24 million acre-feet (MAF), the equivalent of water use at roughly 3.72 million California households. Environment Now further built and strengthened water quality enforcement capacity by supporting the growth of California’s Waterkeeper movement coastwide and inland, as well as across Baja California, Mexico. Finally, Environment Now has worked to reduce water demand and use, contributing to a reduction in statewide water consumption of almost 22% (1.82 MAF) since 2013, and securing new commitments of over 0.5 MAF of reclaimed water by 2030.

Forests

For decades, California’s national forests were being rapidly cut down by commercial timber companies denuding public forests at taxpayer expense. In response, Environment Now has established and supported a network of national forest defenders throughout the state, working to protect these 20 million acres of federal land. These partners have successfully challenged harmful logging and chaparral-clearcutting projects on every national forest in California. As a result, logging levels on California’s national forests have decreased by 87% since Environment Now was founded in 1989, from almost 2 billion board feet of trees cut to 256 million board feet. The work continues, with a goal of fully protecting California’s national forests from commercial logging.

Air

Starting with the 1990s Dump Dirty Diesel campaign, Environment Now and its partners swept across Southern California and then the state with projects that have moved California dramatically from reliance on highly polluting diesel engines and vehicles, to far cleaner alternative fuels, including natural gas and more recently hydrogen and electric power. Advocacy over this 20-year program has resulted in replacement of tens of thousands engines and vehicles in the public sector (transit and school buses, trash vehicles, street sweepers) and in private industry (ports, supermarkets, construction, mining, shipping), dramatically reducing diesel and other air pollution throughout California and significantly improving local air quality.