Sitka Conservation Society

Issues: Community Sustainability

SCS originally formed because Sitka residents were outraged at the large scale clearcutting occurring around their home. They were also very concerned about pollution emitted from the Sitka pulp mill. As SCS has grown, our primary focus has remained on Wilderness and public land protection. However, as residents of Sitka we are obviously very concerned about community issues. In fact, our Community Outreach Coordinator and Community Sustainability Organizer positions were added to help us work in our community, SCS sponsors a Backwoods Lecture Series to help Sitkans learn more about the wildlife and resources of the Tongass. See Our Events Calendar at the bottom of the page for a schedule of SCS events.

Climate Change and Energy

Just because Sitka is a small town, the Sitka Conservation Society does not believe that means it can’t be a national leader in taking on climate change. The idea is that if little Sitka can take progressive steps, why can’t any other community?  To help address climate change in Sitka, SCS has advocated for increasing the city’s hydroelectric capacity and organized energy conservation programs to help individuals improve the energy efficiency of their homes.


Local FoodsLocal Foods

At the Sitka Conservation Society we are working towards creating a more resilient food system by supporting local efforts to protect the habitat of wild foods, support traditional harvest/subsistence lifestyles, increase local food production, create access to wild seafood, reform the school lunch program to include local foods, and increase awareness of local fishing culture.


Environmental Education

The Sitka Conservation Society provides diverse environmental education programs, which reach hundreds of people from preschool age through retirement age every year. Some of these programs are actually done in the classrooms of local schools, while other programs include public lectures and boat trips for the community at large.



Recent Posts:

  • Subsistence in Southeast Alaska:  The Tongass National Forest Service’s Fisheries Resource Monitoring Program

    Subsistence in Southeast Alaska: The Tongass National Forest Service’s Fisheries Resource Monitoring Program

    Subsistence in Southeast Alaska from Sitka Conservation Society on Vimeo. Although we often associate our National Forests with trees and silviculturalists, BY FAR, the most valuable resource that the Tongass National Forest provides is in the production of all 5 species of wild Pacific salmon. Managing salmon habitat and the fish populations within the forest [...]

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  • Jammin’


    One of the things that struck me instantly when I moved to Sitka was the number of jarred foods I saw on people’s shelves. I moved up from Oregon where canning foods was either considered “trendy” or outdated–it was a lost art. But here, it’s an art that is practiced every year. In fact, according [...]

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  • WildFoods Potluck 2013

    WildFoods Potluck 2013

    The WildFoods Potluck is our annual celebration of all things harvested, hunted, fished, grown, and gathered.  The Tongass National Forest and especially the Sitka Community Use Area are rich and abundant places to support our thriving subsistence communities. Thank you to all our members and friends who came out to celebrate with us this year! [...]

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  • National Food Day

    National Food Day

    On October 24, all across the nation, people were participating in Food Day, a national celebration of affordable, healthy, and sustainable food. The Sitka Conservation Society joined with a Fish to Schools local coho salmon lunch at KGH, BMS, SHS, and PHS. SCS partnered with the Sitka School District’s Live Well Physical Activity and Nutrition [...]

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  • 4H Wild Edibles and Foraging

    4H Wild Edibles and Foraging

    The Alaska Way-of-Life 4H wrapped up a fall foraging and wild edibles series in October. 4H is a positive youth development program throughout the nation that challenges youth to engage their head, heart, hands, and health for themselves and the community in which they live. We spent the month learning, gathering, and working with wild [...]

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  • “Chasing Wild Sounds” Program with Richard Nelson and Hank Lentfer

    “Chasing Wild Sounds” Program with Richard Nelson and Hank Lentfer

    Richard Nelsonand Hank Lentfer will be featured at the next Natural History Seminar series presentation titled “Chasing Wild Sounds” December 5th, 7:30pm at UAS. Nelson and Lentfer will discuss their project “Voices of Glacier Bay National Park”, an effort to create a library documenting natural sounds from the park, including everything from the subtle scratches of a [...]

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  • Bird Banders Presentation

    Bird Banders Presentation

    This week, Gwen Baluss will be in town to band juncos, chickadees, and sparrows again, and we could use your help! This effort is part of a long-term study to better understand the winter movements of these species. Last year we banded 97 birds and monitored them all winter long with your help. If you [...]

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  • Lake Suloia Wilderness Trip

    Lake Suloia Wilderness Trip

    In early October two high school students, Sitka Sound Science Center educator Ashley Bolwerk, and I traveled to Lake Suloia on Chichagof Island. This trip was part of the Community Wilderness Stewardship Project funded by the National Forest Foundation and the Sitka Conservation Society Living Wilderness Fund in order to gather baseline data on wilderness [...]

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  • 2013 Wild Foods Potluck – Sun. Dec. 8th

    2013 Wild Foods Potluck – Sun. Dec. 8th

    Join us for our annual Wildfoods Potluck. Bring a dish that features ingredients from the outdoors and meet others interested in our work and the conservation field. For questions, please contact Ray Friedlander,, 747 7509 Check out some of the Best Dish winners and photos from last year’s potluck HERE.

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  • Stream to Plate

    Stream to Plate

    The “why” of Fish to Schools has had clear goals from the beginning: connecting students to their local food system, learning traditions, and understanding the impact of their food choices on the body, economy, and environment. The “how” has been a creative process. Serving locally is one component of the program, but equally important is [...]

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Keep up to date on all of the issues. Check out "The Southeaster" Blog.

  • Hungry for Huckleberry Pie, Venison Stew, or Fresh Greens? Come to the Wild Foods Potluck Nov. 2!
  • Stand Up to Corporate Influence!
  • Kayaking Kootznoowoo: Report on SCS’s Final Wilderness Trip
  • Encouraging Local Natural Resource Stewardship on the Tongass: Kennel Creek
  • Teaching the Alaska way of Life: 4-H in Sitka
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