Weekly News Roundup – April 20, 2012

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

Nearly 400 Kansas Schools to be Recognized as Part of Eco-Schools USA Agreement

April 20 – Nearly 400 pre-K-12 Kansas schools will be nationally recognized for their achievements in ‘greening’ school buildings and grounds, conserving natural resources and integrating environmental education into their curricula as part of an agreement between the Kansas Association for Conservation & Environmental Education (KACEE), Kansas Green Schools Network, Project Learning Tree GreenSchools! and NWF’s Eco-Schools USA programs.

Participating schools now have access to a wealth of resources, including supplementary hands-on activities and lesson plans, investigative studies and equipment, teacher professional development and grant opportunities to improve their school—indoors and outdoors—and save their school money. This agreement will also help many more schools start on the path to providing a more healthy and safe learning environment for students and staff, as well as grow students’ interest and academic performance in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM).

Two Years Into Oil Disaster, Promise to Restore Gulf Remains Unfulfilled

April 19 – Friday marks two years since the blowout on the Deepwater Horizon rig that killed 11 workers. The rig sank and the resulting gusher would eventually release nearly 206 million gallons of oil. The disaster dealt a new setback to a Gulf ecosystem already struggling with years of wetlands degradation and the destructive power of Hurricane Katrina.

Two years later, the oil remains, the promises are forgotten, and Congress still hasn’t done its job,” said Larry Schweiger, president and CEO of the National Wildlife Federation. “Now that both the House and Senate have voted on the RESTORE Act, it is time to get a strong bill, without poison pills, to the President’s desk. The only fair and right solution is for fines from the oil disaster to be reinvested in the Gulf region to help the people and communities hurt by the disaster. A healthy Gulf ecosystem will lead to economic recovery.”

Transportation Bill Hits Dangerous Detour

April 18 – The U.S. House of Representatives today passed a second 90-day extension of the existing transportation bill. The bill would extend transportation funding through September 30.

House leaders are grandstanding on the Keystone pipeline once again for their oil company allies, but this effort to take the decision out of the hands of safety regulators should die in conference,” said Jeremy Symons, senior vice president for conservation and education of the National Wildlife Federation. “The Senate has already voted down this poison pill during their debate on the transportation bill, and the White House yesterday issued a veto threat if Keystone and other polluter loopholes are included in the bill.”

America’s Great Waters Coalition Designates New Waterways to Advocate for Restoration Needs

April 18 – From the Great Lakes to the Colorado River, from Puget Sound to the Everglades, our Great Waters are the lifeblood of our nation, providing critical jobs, drinking water, and amazing recreational opportunities for millions of people. Today, the America’s Great Waters Coalition adds the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint (ACF) River Basin and the St. Johns River in Florida to its list of Great Waters. In addition, the Coalition is expanding the already recognized New York/New Jersey Harbor to include the Hudson River.

And here are highlights from NWF in the News:

For more, visit www.nwf.org/News