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Natural Resources Defense Council

A favorite of Red Room authors Sandi Ault, Maryanne Stahl, Natasha Bauman, Doug Dorst, Luke James, Jess Wells, Samantha Schoech, Gregory A. Wilson, Ashley Wolff, Emory Menefee, Christopher W. Gortner, Clive Matson, Nina Schuyler, Sarah Stone, Jeffrey J. Mariotte, Julia Rogers Hamrick, Sherry ClementsSusan Jane Gilman, Diana R. Jenkins, Emory Menefee, Marjorie Price, Laurie Viera Rigler, Matthew Biberman, and Nina de Gramont.

Name of founders: Frances BeineckeNRDC

Year founded: 1970

Mission: The purpose of NRDC, the Natural Resources Defense Council, is to safeguard the Earth: its people, its plants and animals, and the natural systems on which all life depends.


  • Issued a report on the health effects of the arising from the September 11, 2001, attacks
  • Established offices in Washington, D.C., San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago, and Beijing
  • Enrolled 1.2 million members worldwide
  • Maintains staff of more than three hundred scientist, attorneys, and other specialists
  • With the band Green Day, launched a websiteto raise awareness on the American petroleum dependence in 2006

Profile: NRDC lobbies the United States Congress and other public officials for a public policy that promotes conservation of the natural and built environment. The organization works against urban sprawl, pollution, and habitat destruction, and promotes actions to mitigate global warming and increase the use of renewable energy. It conducts public education projects and sponsors scientific studies. It also sometimes files suit in federal court against corporations and government agencies for violations of the Clean Air Act and the Clean Water Act.

In 2001, NRDC launched the BioGems Initiative to mobilize concerned individuals in defense of exceptional and imperiled ecosystems. The initiative matches NRDC's legal and institutional expertise with the work of citizen activists. Following Hurricane Katrine, NRDC was also one of the only major national environmental organizations to become and stay involved with community activists on the ground in New Orleans. The organization has also published a number of studies on nuclear weapon stockpiles around the world.

To become more involved, go to Natural Resources Defense Council's Action Center page.

Huntington W. Sharp, Senior Editor, Red Room

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