Weekly News Roundup – April 27, 2012

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

Senate Agriculture Committee Improves Farm Bill, but More Work Needed

April 26 – The National Wildlife Federation commends Senate Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow and Ranking Member Pat Roberts for their leadership in crafting and moving out of committee a bipartisan reauthorization of the farm bill.

“It is important that we pass a farm bill this year, and we praise the committee leadership for their hard work in helping to make this happen,” said Julie Sibbing, director of agriculture and forestry programs at the National Wildlife Federation.

The Senate Agriculture Committee passed a farm bill today which seeks to minimize the effects of cuts to conservation and energy programs. However, the National Wildlife Federation believes vital improvements are still needed to ensure protection for wildlife and natural resources.

As Americans Mark the 40th Anniversary of the Clean Water Act, U.S. House of Representatives Takes Another Step Backward

April 26 – The Izaak Walton League of America, National Wildlife Federation, Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership, and Trout Unlimited issued the following statement today concerning the Rehberg Amendment to the House Energy and Water Appropriations Bill:

“We are deeply disappointed that some in Congress continue to block progress to restore Clean Water Act protections for streams, wetlands, and other waters. Once again, the House Energy and Water Appropriations bill includes a rider barring the Army Corps of Engineers from finalizing and implementing science-based Clean Water Act guidance. Unfortunately, the House is picking up where it left off last year by pushing policies that threaten our most important natural resource.”

National Aquarium, NWF Celebrate Maryland Partnership With Earth Day Tree-Planting

April 23 – The National Aquarium officially joined forces with NWF yesterday, becoming the first aquarium or zoo state affiliate of the 75-year-old organization at an Earth Day event featuring Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake.

During the event, Mayor Rawlings-Blake delivered remarks on the importance of the partnership and of the green initiatives taking place across the city, state and region before helping to plant a white dogwood tree in the aquarium’s new Certified Wildlife Habitat at the Harry & Jeanette Weinberg Waterfront Park on the Inner Harbor. Visitors to NWF’s Earth Day tent were given the opportunity to take home their own ‘baby’ trees for planting later in the year.

Eco-Schools USA Congratulates Dept of Education’s U.S. Green Ribbon School Award Recipients

April 23 – The Department of Education has recognized 19 registered Eco-Schools among the 78 inaugural winners of the U.S. Green Ribbon School Awards Program, which recognizes schools for their commitment to an energy-efficient, sustainable and healthy school environment, and to ensuring the environmental literacy of their graduates.

The schools, which represent 14 states, were previously given the opportunity to utilize an alignment primer created by NWF’s Eco-Schools USA program as a stepping stone to winning a Green Ribbon. In all, schools from 29 states plus Washington, DC, were recognized.

Canada-New England Tar Sands Pipeline Hits Strong Opposition

April 23 – A proposal by Canadian Energy giant Enbridge, Inc. to partially reverse the flow of a Canadian pipeline received 41,000 comments in opposition. The reversal is the first step in an apparent scheme to ship tar sands oil through New England in order to access East Coast and overseas markets. Comments to the Canadian National Energy Board (NEB) expressed concerns about the environmental and public health impacts of the proposal.

The NEB, the Canadian federal agency that oversees permitting interprovincial pipelines, is reviewing Enbridge’s proposal to reverse the flow direction of a portion of its aging 62-year-old pipeline to move tar sands crude approximately 125 miles from Sarnia to the Westover Oil Terminal, outside of Hamilton, Ontario. Pipeline companies have sent clear signals that the real intent is a long-range plan to ship tar sands oil further on through Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine to tankers in Portland harbor for Eastern U.S. and overseas markets.

And here are highlights from NWF in the News:

For more, visit www.nwf.org/News