Weekly News Roundup – April 5, 2013

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

Report: Gulf Wildlife Three Years into the Gulf Oil Disaster

April 2 –  As the three-year mark of the Gulf oil disaster approaches, a new National Wildlife Federation report gives a snapshot view of six important species in the Gulf of Mexico and makes recommendations as to how we can restore their habitats and the Gulf as a whole.

“Three years after the initial explosion, the impacts of the disaster continue to unfold,” said Doug Inkley, senior scientist for the National Wildlife Federation and lead report author. “Dolphins are still dying in high numbers in the areas affected by oil. These ongoing deaths—particularly in an apex predator like the dolphin—are a strong indication that there is something amiss with the Gulf ecosystem.”

“The oil disaster highlighted the gaps in our understanding of the Gulf of Mexico,” said Ian MacDonald, professor of Oceanography at Florida State University. “What frustrates me is how little has changed over the past three years. In many cases, funding for critical research has even been even been cut, limiting our understanding of the disaster’s impacts. For example, we know that some important coral communities were damaged, but funding for the necessary follow up has not been there.”

The report’s release comes as BP and the other companies responsible for the disaster are on trial in federal court for violations of multiple environmental laws. The report describes different sources of restoration funding resulting from the disaster and provides initial suggestions for how this money can be used to improve the outlook for the species discussed in the report. 

  • Click here to download the full report.
  • Visit out NWF’s Facebook page to download and share infographics
  • Read the Wildlife Promise blog about dolphin deaths in the Gulf

Conservation groups urge BLM to provide “Crown Jewel” Roan Plateau new lease on life

April 1A coalition of conservation and sportsmen’s groups has offered a range of management proposals intended to protect the fish, wildlife, backcountry and other natural riches that make the Roan Plateau a “crown jewel of Colorado’s landscape.’’

The 12 groups submitted the proposals to the Bureau of Land Management, which is writing a new Environmental Impact Statement after a federal court ruled that an EIS and 2008 plan failed to consider a more protective development option. The court also said the BLM’s analysis of the cumulative impacts of oil and gas drilling on the region’s air quality was faulty.

The groups’ comments submitted to the BLM Friday include a “Conservation Alternative,’” which would require companies to access gas atop the Roan from private land on the plateau’s southern edge. No new well pads, roads or infrastructure would be allowed on federal land. The proposal also would prohibit disturbance of the surface in important wildlife habitat and migration corridors at the base of the plateau. Provisions in the earlier plan intended to protect sensitive wildlife areas had built-in waivers that could have opened the land to construction.

Calling all Photographers: Enter to Win a Trip to the ‘Polar Bear Capital of the World’

April 1The National Wildlife® Photo Contest is now accepting entries for its prestigious 43rd annual competition. Operated by National Wildlife Federation’s award-winning, full-color nature magazine National Wildlife, the contest celebrates the beauty of nature and provides funds to help the organization protect wildlife and wild places. Photographers of all levels of experience are eligible submit images in the juried competition and the popular People’s Choice Award. There also is a separate Youth category for children ages 13-17.

Winners will see their photos featured in the magazine alongside images by the world’s top nature photographers, as well as on the National Wildlife Federation website, nwf.org, and in the organization’s annual calendar. The Grand Prize is an expense-paid trip for two to Churchill, Manitoba, Canada, to see and photograph polar bears.  First and second place winners in seven different categories will receive iPads and iTouches, or cash equivalents.



And now here are highlights from NWF in the news:

For more visit www.nwf.org/news