Protecting Wetlands from Pollution and Politics

Moore Charitable
2 min readFeb 27, 2024


We love wetlands! They support many of the most ecologically diverse ecosystems in the world, providing habitat for countless species of birds, mammals, and fish. They also help us by serving as natural water filters, as carbon sinks, and as buffers for storm surges and floods.

Unfortunately, wetlands are disappearing three times faster than forests, losing 35% globally since 1970. Climate change, pollution, and human encroachment have caused devastating habitat loss, harming species and diminishing wetlands’ role in climate resilience.

The bad news: In the United States, protections for wetlands are eroding at the federal and state levels, especially after the U.S. Supreme Court decision that enforcement of the Clean Water Act be limited only to wetlands with contiguous surface connection to federally protected waters. The ruling ignored that water flows in many ways, not just aboveground, and severely restricted wetlands across the country. Furthermore, on the Supreme Court’s heels, North Carolina’s state legislature stripped state-level wetlands protections (although Gov. Roy Cooper recently introduced an executive order to try to reverse that measure). In Alaska, which has more than half of all wetlands in the United States, the Supreme Court ruling could change how they are managed, too.

The Moore Charitable Foundation partners with several organizations that work to protect and restore these incredibly vital and vibrant ecosystems, including on the following initiatives:

  • Wetlands International, which advocates for and restores mangrove habitat in the Manglares de David protected area on Panama’s Pacific Coast.
  • Bahamas Mangrove Alliance, founded by the Bonefish and Tarpon Trust, the Perry Institute for Marine Science, and Waterkeepers Bahamas, which works with local Bahamian communities to protect mangroves through advocacy and education.
  • Southern Environmental Law Center, which has always worked with communities to safeguard wetland habitats, especially now after the North Carolina State Legislature stripped state-level wetland protections following the Supreme Court’s Sackett v. EPA decision.
  • Environmental Defense Fund, which works to promote a statewide wetland restoration campaign in North Carolina to combat the effects of Sackett v. EPA and the state’s own slashing of wetland protections in North Carolina.
  • Susitna Rivers Coalition, which advocates for wetland protection and ordinances in Alaska’s Matanuska-Susitna Borough (Mat-Su) to support the health of the state’s economy, environment, and citizen’s lifestyles.
  • National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, whose Southwest Rivers Program partners with local organizations to restore “green” ribbons in the Southwest, including the Rio Grande, improving streams, riparian systems, and associated dry habitats.

Wetlands, clearly vital to people and to wildlife, are places to explore, boat, fish, hunt — and protect. By working together with our conservation partners, we can help raise awareness of their importance and help ensure a future in which they are abundant.



Moore Charitable

The Moore Charitable Foundation founded by Louis Bacon is a private non-profit foundation committed to land and water conservation.