October 24, 2013 — What does it take to change the world?
Influence? Probably. Money? Sure. Connections? Helps.
For adventurer Gregg Treinish, the answer is much simpler.
“Three seconds of courage. That’s all it takes.”
In 2010, Treinish combined his passion for outdoor adventures and a background in wildlife biology with “three seconds of courage” to found Adventurers and Scientists for Conservation.
The premise behind Bozeman, Montana–based ACS is really quite simple. As Treinish states in the video, “There are tens of thousands of athletes who go outside every single day. They’re hikers, climbers, boaters, skiers. They’re people who are going out into every square corner of this planet. And anywhere they go there’s a scientist who needs them to collect data. Adventures and Scientists for Conservation finds those athletes that are going to the most remote corners of the globe, and we find the scientists who need data from those remote corners, and we plug them together.”
Since it launched in 2011, ACS has connected more than 1,200 outdoor enthusiasts with more than 120 scientists. Organizations that have benefited from fieldwork done by ACS include the U.S. Forest Service, the Bureau of Land Management, the National Park Service and others.
According to the organization’s website, these enthusiasts’ work “has led to the discovery of more than a dozen new species, provided key information to guide climate change and wildlife management decisions, and helped to protect threatened wildlife habitat.”
The origins of ACS can be traced to an expedition Treinish and fellow hiker Deia Schlosberg began in 2006. Together the pair walked 7,800 miles over the course of 22 months along the entire length of the Andes Mountains in South America. As a result, they were named National Geographic Adventurers of the Year in 2008.
Following the journey Treinish had a nagging feeling that he wanted to do more for the areas he was visiting throughout his expeditions. The idea for ACS hit him in November 2010 during “three seconds of courage.” He incorporated ACS as a nonprofit in January of the following year, started working full time that April and has been going strong since.
“Anyone can do this. Anybody can make the difference that they wish they could.”
Gregg Treinish, A MoveShake Story is a Red Reel Production directed, filmed and edited by Alexandria Bombach. The 2012 MoveShake series “features real life stories and lessons of people dedicating themselves to environmental and social issues.”