Conservation and U.S. National Security


Our natural world sustains us and is the very foundation on which we build our lives. As the recent COVID-19 crisis made clear, our world is increasingly interconnected, highlighting the importance of not just preserving our natural resources at home but abroad.

Zoonotic diseases, natural disasters, and regional instability caused by food and water scarcity anywhere in the world could cause ripple effects, presenting national security concerns for the U.S. here at home. Historically, the U.S. has supported conservation initiatives designed to fight against these perils, and as we continue to battle against a global pandemic and the effects of a changing climate, examining international conservation initiatives and their role in U.S. national security could be more important than ever.

Could many of our national security challenges be preempted with strong international nature conservation? What role is the U.S. currently playing in preserving our natural world and are additional efforts needed?

The Hill will convene policymakers and conservation experts for a comprehensive discussion on how the U.S. can lead conservation efforts at home and abroad.

Tuesday, December 8, 2020

1:00 PM ET / 10:00 AM PT



  • Philippe Cousteau, Founder, EarthEcho International
  • Dr. Jane Goodall, Founder, The Jane Goodall Institute & UN Messenger of Peace
  • Rep. Raúl Grijalva (D-AZ), Chair, House Natural Resources Committee
  • Rep. Chrissy Houlahan (D-PA), Member, House Foreign Affairs Committee
  • Sally Jewell, Former Sec. of the Interior, The Nature Conservancy Board
  • Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL), Member, House Foreign Affairs Committee
  • Cristina Mittermeier, Co-Founder, Sealegacy & Only One
  • Eileen O’Connor, Senior Vice President, Policy and Advocacy, The Rockefeller Foundation
  • Rep. Jeff Fortenberry (R-NE), Co-Chair, International Conservation Caucus

Sponsor Perspective

  • Jennifer Morris, Chief Executive Officer, The Nature Conservancy
  • Carter Roberts, President & CEO, World Wildlife Fund
  • M. Sanjayan, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer, Conservation International
  • Cristián Samper, Ph.D., President & CEO, Wildlife Conservation Society
  • Dr. Rod Schoonover, The Council on Strategic Risks & Ecological Futures Group


  • Steve Clemons, Editor-at-Large, The Hill

Join the conversation! Tweet us @TheHillEvents using #TheHillNatSec