Crag Law Center

Crag Law Center is a client-focused, public-interest law organization that provides legal aid for the environment, representing community groups, conservation organizations, Native Tribes, and individuals across the Pacific Northwest. To protect and sustain our region’s natural legacy for current and future generations, Crag offers a wide range of strategic support, including legal representation, civic participation, development and execution of campaign strategies, community organizing, and media relations. They implement a unique model of “legal aid for the environment,” combining their legal skills with their clients’ passion for their local communities to implement a positive vision for Oregon’s future.

Working Together

In 2004, the Oregon Shores board of directors made a decision that has hugely benefited our work and the coastal environment ever since. We had worked on several issues with Crag and had developed a great respect for their work and their mission. We learned that they were interested in doing more work on coastal issues and wanted to develop an ongoing relationship. It didn’t take much conversation before we had hammered out a joint plan, and the Coastal Law Project (CLP) was born.

Oregon Shores has been working in partnership with Crag ever since. We provide funding, and they provide low-cost, high-quality legal services. The cost of the project is one of our significant fiscal challenges, and yet it leverages vastly more legal help than we could afford were we to hire legal help at market rates. The CLP enables us to work with dedicated conservation lawyers with an impressive track record in defending the environment in court—not just on the Oregon coast but throughout the West.

Our Impact

After more than a decade of working together, Oregon Shores and Crag Law Center, through the Coastal Law Project, have had a significant impact on protecting public beaches and coastal ecosystems. Together, we:
  • Stopped major fracked gas export facilities at Warrenton and Coos Bay;
  • Protected Clatsop County forest lands from conversion to residential subdivisions;
  • Limited expansion and renewal of instream gravel and gold mining in the Chetco, Elk, and Rogue rivers in Curry County;
  • Enforced land use laws to protect estuaries, wetlands and dunes in Tillamook, Lincoln, Lane, Coos, and Curry Counties;
  • Supported state agency and local development of climate change adaptation goals and policies;
  • Protected undeveloped headlands from conversion to a major resort complex at Crook Point;
  • Commented on dozens of proposals for hardened shore structures, raising concerns and forcing consideration of public impact to the beach;
  • Trained hundreds of coastal residents to understand and engage in the land use system and advocate for their communities.

Every day, we continue fighting together to protect the Oregon Coast.

Help preserve the legacy of our Oregon coast for all generations