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Sierra Club Conservation Policies

Visual Pollution


[Excerpt from] Environmental Quality of Settled Areas . . . in principle, the Club supports the regulations of the location, size, and character of advertising signs; the screening or removal of nuisance sights; and the placement of utilities underground wherever practical.

Adopted by the Board of Directors, December 10, 1966

The Sierra Club opposes billboard development along highways and supports measures to restrict these billboards. Furthermore, the Sierra Club opposes any variance from its above-mentioned position, including [proposals] to allow billboards which carry environmental messages on federal-aid highways.

Adopted by the Board of Directors, February 5-6, 1969

The Highway Beautification Act of 1965 has not fulfilled its promise or the intent of Congress. Thousands of illegal billboards remain on the highways because the Federal Highway Administration has failed to enforce the statue. The Sierra Club therefore authorizes litigation to compel the Federal Highway Administration to enforce the statue by decreasing highway funds to states without effective billboard control programs.

Adopted by the Executive Committee, November 20-22, 1981

The Sierra Club opposes the proliferation of outdoor off-premise advertising (billboards) and endorses legislative and other actions at the federal, state, and local levels to strengthen prohibitions against billboard proliferation and to replace existing billboards with state-managed service logo signs on highway rights-of-way.

Adopted by the Board of Directors, February 4, 1984.


The Sierra Club opposes unnecessary night lighting in both urban and suburban areas. This practice is a waste of electrical energy, destroys the aesthetics of the night time sky, and seriously interferes with astronomical research.

Adopted by the Board of Directors, May 1-2, 1971

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