Coastal Reserve and Marine Wildlife Sanctuary (credit: Riled Up Journal)
Perhaps you're tired of 'Black Fridays' and 'Cyber Mondays' and would like to find another way to make a contribution that really makes a difference. Consider donating to a conservation or science-based organization workiing to protect the natural world year-round on this Giving Tuesday .
Environmental issues are small, large, and everywhere. They range from: air and water pollution; wildlife extinction and landscape protection; marine conservation; reforestation and ecological restoration; creating resilience to climate change impacts. There are many worthy options available but here are 5 conservation organizations where any donations made go directly to supporting active projects in the field that we suggest you consider:
1. Pax Natura is an international rainforest preservation foundation that established the Bosque Illuvioso project in Costa Rica's central mountains that saved a tropical rainforest connecting two national parks from being logged. The reserve is now a living-laboratory available to students, researchers, and artists interested in learing about tropical rainforests. The Bosque has become a model for reforestation programs elsewhere for certified CO2 capture projects known as REDD. Donations to the foundation can be made here .
2. Mission Blue was founded by oceanographer and National Geographic Society explorer Sylvia Earle, with the goal to "ignite public support for the protection of Hope Spots—special places that are vital to the health of the ocean, the blue heart of our planet." One of their immediate goals is to bring a significant increase in ocean protection from less than four percent today to 20% by the year 2020. Mission Blue brings their discoveries from a network of marine researchers to the public through films, social and traditional media, and innovative tools like Google’s Explore the Ocean. You can make a donation to help Mission Blue here .
3. The Conservation Alliance is a premiere environmental group initiated by learders from the US outdoor industry that aims to protect wildlands throughout North America. Since TCA's founding in 1989, the Alliance has supported projects with grants from Arctic Alaska to Baja California and everwhere in between. At last count, their efforts have resulted in 45,000,000 acres of wild landscapes being conserved for future enjoyment and environmental purposes. TCA's ongoing work can supported with a donation here .
4. Save the Colorado has the mission to protect and restore the Colorado River and its tributaries from its source to the sea. The Boulder, Colorado based organization was instrumental in helping to broker a deal allowing Colorado River water to flow once again into the Colorado River's dry delta on Mexico's Sea of Cortez and restore some of its ecological integrity. The group actively works to prevent ill-conceived dams and water diversion projects in the river basin, to promote water conservation throughout the arid West, and to support active engagement with the river for recreation and wildlife preservation. Donations to help their work can be made here .
5. Save Our Shores has made it their mission to care for the marine environment in central California through ocean awareness, advocacy, and individual action in the Monterrey Bay region. The volunteer organization has made key accomplishments including: the prevention of oil drilling along Central Coast offshore waters; helping to establish the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary, preventing ocean pollution from tourist cruise ships; and finding community solutions to local ocean issues. The educational focus of SOS is to teach students about watersheds, ocean and river pollution; advocate for plastic-free communities; and manage their annual Coastal Cleanup Day. You can assist these active conservation initiatives with a donation here .
These nature protection efforts go on far longer than any one-day event. You should consider supporting their projects on a sustaining basis.