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Top Accomplishments

Protected Montana’s Cabinet Mountains Wilderness

Mining companies were unable to move the Montanore and Rock Creek copper and silver mine proposals forward due to our legal challenges. One of the country’s oldest designated Wilderness areas and its rare grizzly bear and bull trout habitats remain intact.

Expanded the Community Empowerment Project

Earthworks doubled our capacity to assist communities by exposing air pollution at oil and gas operations. We visited 371 oil and gas facilities in 14 states with our two optical gas imaging cameras, gathering video evidence of air pollution, and filing dozens of official complaints with state and federal regulators. In several cases, regulators required companies to take action to fix methane leaks and make other changes to their operations.

Resisted Rollbacks of Environmental Standards

The Trump administration proposed loosening or eliminating bedrock environmental protections, including public lands, air and water pollution standards, federal monument designations, mine waste clean up, and requirements for environmental reviews of projects. Earthworks fought hard to stop these rollbacks where possible, and won an unexpected victory in preserving federal methane emissions regulations enacted under the Obama administration.

Fought Fossil Fuel Infrastructure Expansion

Communities across the country have risen up to protest proposed new oil and gas infrastructure projects from pipelines to petrochemical plants. We provided technical and advocacy support to grassroots groups in the Gulf Coast and Appalachia opposing new pipelines and infrastructure for oil, gas, and plastics. Earthworks, along with Stop the Frack Attack and other partners, organized the People vs. Oil & Gas Summit in Pittsburgh, which brought together 425 frontline activists from 24 states for mutual support, learning, and movement leadership building.

California Air Rules Finalized and Improved

In 2017, California issued the country’s strongest regulations to reduce methane pollution from oil and gas operations. Earthworks provided evidence to support this rulemaking, which allows communities to partner with government in enforcement.