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The Arid Lands Environment Centre (ALEC) is Central Australia’s peak environmental organisation defending the desert country for over 40 years. We campaign, advocate and support local people to take action for the protection of arid lands and people.

We are a strong and trusted voice for Australia’s iconic desert country. We stand up and speak out for the protection of land and water, animals and plants, special places and the communities that depend on them.

We work with partners across vast landscapes to deliver solutions to the ecological challenges we face. We understand the importance of knowledge, science, research, education and engaging the community on the issues that matter.


Defending Australia's deserts

Thorny Devil walking through the desert, near Alice Springs in Australia

Australia's deserts are biologically rich ecosystems, supporting a vast array of animals and plants, habitats and vibrant communities. The iconic bilby and rock wallaby are just two species that are threatened. 

Traditional Owners have looked after the desert country for thousands of years. Today, it is under increasing threat from climate change, mining, inappropriate development and introduced species.

Together, ALEC is catalysing change and building momentum with our supporters towards our vision of healthy futures for arid lands and people.

Take action

Our impact

We’ve turned climate change and renewables into consistent election issues in the Northern Territory, put fracking on the national agenda and built a beacon of sustainability from the ground up through the Alice Springs Community Garden. 

Standing alongside Traditional Owners, we’ve protected our community against invasive proposals like nuclear waste dumps and uranium mines and continue to play a lead role in the local anti fracking campaign.

ALEC has played a key role bringing innovative initiatives like Alice Solar City and Alice Water Smart to the community, and helped to initiate the 10 Deserts Project - the largest Indigenous led conservation project on Earth. 

What we do

Our history

40 years ago, a group of scientists, activists, land rights lawyers and conservationists came together because nuclear war, unchecked mining and land clearing were posing major threats to the environment in the Northern Territory.

Since then, ALEC has grown from a small organisation to one with a big impact in the desert region and nationally. We are a network of local people who continue to speak up and take action for the protection of our water, climate, communities and desert country.  

Our community

ALEC has over 400 members and strong engagement from local people, businesses and groups. This strong community support for ALEC is what has enabled it to survive and thrive in Alice Springs. 

Environmental action to protect the desert possible with people like you behind us. If you support a sustainable, healthy future in the arid lands, there are a number of ways you can get involved, get active and make a difference. 


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