You read it right. The National Wildlife Federation, which has long been one of the most influential conservation organizations, devoted to helping people create "backyard wildlife habitats," is partnering with ScottsMiracle-Gro, the company responsible for selling many of the very chemicals that endanger wildlife, such as Round-Up.
In its press release, ScottsMiracle-Gro stated:
"The National Wildlife Federation (NWF) and ScottsMiracle-Gro are announcing a new partnership to advance NWF's nationwide Be Out There initiative to connect children with nature. As the national presenting sponsor, ScottsMiracle-Gro will enhance NWF's programs to create green spaces and attract wildlife to backyards and communities across the country."
Because when I think ScottsMiracle-Gro, I know I think "green spaces."
But of course, that's what Scotts wants all of us to think. What better way to gain some credibility as an environmentally-friendly company than to partner with one of the most respected conservation organizations in the country? And NWF gains some money to move its programs forward.
From NWF president and CEO Larry Schweiger:
"National Wildlife Federation and Scotts are committed to getting millions more children to play outdoors on a regular basis. This relationship is a win for American childhood, because together we will help families raise healthier and happier children who have a lifelong commitment to protecting wildlife and the natural world. Through this new partnership, ScottsMiracle-Gro will help NWF's Be Out There initiative create events, tools and resources that inspire parents to make nature a part of their family's everyday lives."
A win-win, right?
Unfortunately for both camps, the public has been less than enthusiastic about this latest partnership.
The National Wildlife Federation Facebook page has been inundated with comments from people decrying the NWF's role in this greenwashing, begging the organization to rethink the decision, and demanding to be taken off their mailing lists.
A sample of that decrying and NWF's response, via screengrab from this afternoon:
So, what do you think? Is this a good partnership? Or a marriage made in Hell?
On January 29th, NWF announced that they will be ending the partnership with ScottsMiracle-Gro.