Weekly News Roundup – April 12, 2013

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

Sportsmen Share Priorities With New Interior Chief

April 10 – A national sportsmen’s coalition looks forward to working with Interior Secretary Sally Jewell on continuing the important job of restoring balance to public-lands management and implementing oil and gas leasing reforms started by her predecessor.

Sportsmen for Responsible Energy Development congratulated Jewell on her confirmation by the U.S. Senate Wednesday and urged her to provide strong leadership to conserve clean air and water, fish and wildlife habitat and preserve the public-lands legacy that has helped shape the nation’s economy and identity.

“SFRED and millions of sportsmen believe in responsible development of energy resources on our multiple use public lands. We are not, however, willing to sacrifice fish and wildlife habitat, populations, water resources, and recreational opportunities to poorly planned development,” the CEOs and presidents of the coalition’s three lead partners wrote in an April 10 letter to Jewell.

The letter lists the coalition’s top six priorities and was signed by Larry Schweiger of the National Wildlife Federation, Whit Fosburgh of the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership, and Chris Wood of Trout Unlimited.

NWF: EPA’s McCarthy Deserves Fair Hearing, Clean Confirmation

April 10 – With the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee set to hold a hearing on the nomination of Gina McCarthy as Environmental Protection Agency Administrator on Thursday, the National Wildlife Federation urges a fair hearing and clean up-or-down confirmation vote.

“The Environmental Protection Agency will need her leadership as it continues working to confront the climate crisis,” said Larry Schweiger, president and CEO of the National Wildlife Federation. “While President Obama has made clear that he prefers to work with Congress to find bipartisan compromise on climate action, in the face of Congress’ continued failure to act meaningfully on climate change, it’s essential that the Environmental Protection Agency uses its Clean Air Act authority to finalize and implement limits on industrial carbon pollution.”

The National Wildlife Federation began an online campaign in key states on Monday urging U.S. Senate to support the clean water concerns of sportsmen and confirm McCarthy, part of a coalition campaign going online in 11 states. The ads read:

Clean water matters to [state]. It drives our economy and defines our values. No wonder 79% of sportsmen support the Clean Water Act. Tell Senator XX to stand strong for sportsmen and support Gina McCarthy for EPA.

  • Click here to learn more about NWF’s efforts to advocate for wildlife-friendly renewable energy.

Water Bill Guts Environmental Review of Corps Projects

April 9 –  Fifty law professors from across the country have signed onto a letter asking for the removal of two provisions in the current version of the Water Resources Development Act that prevent effective environmental reviews of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers proposals.

“I have always considered Senator Boxer a friend to the environment and I’m shocked she would put her name on this bill,” said Holly Doremus, a professor of Environmental Regulation at the University of California–Berkeley School of Law. “The bill as it stands would allow the Corps to do an end-run around careful environmental review.”

This bill was co-sponsored by Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and Senator David Vitter (R-LA). The almost 300-page bill was introduced just three weeks ago on a Friday evening and voted on by the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee the following Wednesday. The full Senate could vote on the bill as early as Thursday.

“The history of the Corps water program has all too often been a story of taxpayer dollars being poured into projects with greatly exaggerated benefits and massively underestimated costs,” said Zygmunt J.B. Plater, a law professor at Boston College. “As written, this bill puts the fox in charge of the hen house. If the bill passes, we’ll see even more taxpayer dollars sunk into dysfunctional projects that hurt the national interest.”

  • Read the full letter here.

And now here are highlights from NWF in the news:

For more information, visit www.nwf.org/news