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Working through the Sierra Club he founded, Muir succeeded in 1905 in having Congress transfer the Mariposa Grove and Yosemite Valley to the National Park Service.
While Muir wanted nature preserved for the sake of pure beauty, Roosevelt subscribed to Pinchot's formulation, "to make the forest produce the largest amount of whatever crop or service will be most useful, and keep on producing it for generation after generation of men and trees." Muir and the Sierra Club vehemently opposed the damming of the Hetch Hetchy Valley in Yosemite in order to provide water to the city of San Francisco.
Conservation first became a national issue during the progressive era's conservation movement (1890s - 1920s).
In the United States today, the organized environmental movement is represented by a wide range of organizations sometimes called non-governmental organizations or NGOs.
These organizations exist on local, national, and international scales.
For example, the damming of rivers for mills cut off upriver towns from fisheries; logging and clearing of forest in watersheds harmed local fisheries downstream.
In New England, many farmers became uneasy as they noticed clearing of forest changed stream flows and a decrease in bird population which helped control insects and other pests.
Pinchot promoted private use (for a fee) under federal supervision.