Weekly News Roundup – April 13, 2012

Want to know what National Wildlife Federation was up to this week? Here is a recap of the week’s NWF news:

Disney Recognizes Youth from Georgia, New Mexico for Conservation Efforts

April 13 – Four youth from Georgia and New Mexico were selected by the National Wildlife Federation as Youth Ambassadors to participate in Disney’s Kids and Nature Celebration at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando.

Brandon, Malcolm, Reena and Daveishena and other youth recognized by Disney, will participate in the first-ever Disney Friends of Change Youth Summit, the World Premier of Disneynature’s Chimpanzee with Dr. Jane Goodall, and will receive awards and recognition at the Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund Awards Ceremony.

“The youth chosen to receive the Disney Kids and Nature Champions Award represent a committed group of young people who care about protecting the natural world,” said Larry Schweiger, who will speak at the Celebration in Orlando.

Getting the Dirt on Dirt for Healthier, Happier Children

April 12 – Dirt is a four-letter word to many parents, but letting kids get dirty is actually good for them according to a new report from the National Wildlife Federation, The Dirt on Dirt: How Getting Dirty Outdoors Benefits Kids.

Fears about dangers lurking in the muck – microbes, parasites and amoebas, oh my! – keep some parents from letting kids do what comes naturally, which is to go outside and get messy. But here’s a dirty little secret: children who spend the better part of their free time in the company of their sterile hi-tech gadgets rather than playing outside, are more vulnerable to obesity, ADHD, vitamin D deficiency and depression.

Report: Reengineer Mississippi River Delta To Protect Nation’s Economic, Ecological Assets

April 11 – Building a series of engineered structures called diversions along the lower Mississippi River will yield tens of billions of dollars in net annual benefits to the nation and hedge against future disasters, according to a new report co-authored by 22 prominent scientists and engineers.

The report, “Answering 10 Fundamental Questions about the Mississippi River Delta,” makes a scientific and economic case for restoring the Mississippi River Delta wetlands, which have shrunk in size by nearly 1,900 square miles since the 1930s. The report also makes the case for reengineering the aging lower Mississippi River flood-control and navigation systems, which are increasingly vulnerable to catastrophic failures.

New NWF Report: A Degraded Gulf of Mexico

April 10 – As the two-year mark of the Deepwater Horizon blowout approaches, the National Wildlife Federation issued a new report today examining the health of the Gulf’s wildlife and wetlands. Impacts from the Gulf oil disaster will be unfolding for years, if not decades, and many species of wildlife in the Gulf of Mexico will need the combined efforts of scientists, policymakers and regulators to recover.

A Degraded Gulf Of Mexico: Wildlife and Wetlands Two Years into the Gulf Oil Disaster  was written by National Wildlife Federation Senior Scientist Dr. Doug Inkley.

Oil still in Louisiana’s marshes two years after start of Gulf Oil Disaster [w/Video and Photos]

April 10 – Two years after the Deepwater Horizon drilling platform exploded, killing eleven men and spilling 5 million barrels of crude oil into the Gulf of Mexico, oil remains a major threat to Louisiana’s wetlands. Biologists and wildlife advocates say the disaster is far from over — oil can still be found beneath the surface in marshes and it is impacting wildlife and exacerbating the erosion of the state’s coast.

NWF believes the most important step in restoration is the passage of the RESTORE Act, which would put the billions of dollars in fines that BP and the other responsible parties will pay to work on the damaged areas of the Gulf Coast. From sediment diversions to marsh creation and barrier island restoration, there are many projects that could significantly rebuild the wetlands if they only had the funding.

And here are highlights from NWF in the News:

For more, visit www.nwf.org/News