Working Together

The Arid Lands Initiative partners recognize that the Columbia Plateau is valued for different reasons by different stakeholders. The complexities of the landscape and the issues the region faces dictate that it is imperative to find common ground—shared values—among all stakeholders, and to design the future of this landscape together.


content-image-col-river-2The science products we’ve developed can provide a useful way to share information about our interests, and can function as a tool to guide our collaborative work. They also provide enough specifics about the landscape to make it easier to identify where other interests lie. The process we used to arrive at our shared priorities focused at the landscape scale. This perspective complements—but does not fully encompass—the perspective of those who work and manage their own farms, ranches, properties, or even preserves. We hope that, by articulating our shared priorities, we can start the necessary conversations that will help us all understand those additional perspectives and how they relate to the landscape as a whole. This will also allow us to determine what information is missing, and where opportunities exist for working with diverse interests to achieve shared goals.




Our current partners have mandates and missions that, though not all the same, are mostly aligned. This has allowed us to find common ground in working together. We know that landscape conservation needs only reflect one aspect of what is important and valuable in the region, and that we need new partners who can help us understand and assist in furthering other values, including agriculture, grazing, development, energy, or recreational opportunities.


The Arid Lands Initiative is an open partnership, and we are looking for other organizations, land owners and managers, producers, businesses, communities, sovereign tribes, and other entities with interests in eastern Washington, who are willing to partner with us to find common ground and carve a shared path forward towards a system of habitats that sustain native plant and animal communities, and support compatible local economies and communities.


Horizontal Rule


Our partnership is guided by the following principles:



Each partner acts within their own authorities, and is guided by their own missions and mandates.


We are committed to building and renewing relationships with stakeholders and decision makers in every place we are considering taking shared action.


We will continue to use and improve our scientific foundation, to ensure our decisions are based on the best available knowledge and information.


We help ensure that partners’ projects and actions result in long-term conservation success at a landscape scale.


We implement protection and restoration projects, and work with partners to help other uses achieve their goals while minimizing or mitigating any impacts, and even providing benefits to conservation.


We are committed to collecting information, measuring progress towards our goals, and adapting to change.


We recognize that success in achieving our vision for this landscape depends on working with those who have responsibility for the natural resources in the Columbia Plateau. If you are interested in discussing how we can inform one another or work together, please contact us.