NRDC in the News

In a huge victory for Yellowstone’s wild buffalo, also known as bison, these iconic animals will now have access to tens of thousands of acres of habitat north of Yellowstone National Park during the winter and spring. After a turbulent winter in which hundreds of buffalo were captured by government agents, the agencies that manage Yellowstone’s herd signed a historic agreement giving the buffalo room to roam in Montana’s Gardiner Basin. NRDC has continually advocated for this area to be opened for free-roaming buffalo, and now, thanks to the incredible activism and support of our Members, the agencies have heeded our call. Allowing buffalo more seasonal habitat is just one piece of the solution, but it marks a landmark victory for wild buffalo and our Yellowstone BioGem. Thank you for your activism on behalf of Yellowstone’s wild buffalo!


Earlier this month, the National Marine Fisheries Service finalized its ruling to designate critical habitat for Alaska’s Cook Inlet beluga whales. More than 3,000 square miles of the Cook Inlet will be listed as critical habitat for the whales, whose numbers have plummeted in the past 30 years, from 1,300 to around 340 today. Under the Endangered Species Act, federal agencies must carefully review any actions that may “adversely modify” this critical habitat. Cook Inlet belugas live in one of the most industrialized regions in Alaska, and are constantly threatened by pollution from partially treated sewage, oil and gas production, ship strikes and noise pollution. NRDC and our environmental partners have been fighting for years to protect the dwindling population of belugas, and will continue to fight in a separate lawsuit that the state of Alaska has filed to challenge the beluga’s endangered species status.

Wolves in the Northern Rockies suffered a terrible blow this month when the House and Senate passed a budget bill that includes a provision stripping them of their Endangered Species Act protections. States will now be free to carry out plans for killing hundreds of wolves. It marks the first time in history that Congress has taken an animal off the endangered species list, setting a potentially dangerous precedent for other endangered wildlife. The legislation circumvents good science and a federal court ruling — won by NRDC last year — that restored protections for wolves. The congressional rider affects wolves in Montana, Idaho and parts of Washington, Oregon and Utah. We’ll continue to monitor the states to ensure they uphold their commitment to protect viable populations of wolves.

More than two dozen mayors across the country expressed their concern over the proposed Keystone XL tar sands pipeline in a recent letter to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Last year we alerted you to plans for this trans-boundary pipeline, which would bring dirty tar sands oil from Canada to the U.S. Gulf Coast. The proposed pipeline would lead to additional mining and drilling in Canada’s boreal forest, while doing nothing to move our cities and towns towards cleaner forms of energy production. Communities along the path of the 2,000-mile pipeline would also bear the risk of potential spills and explosions. The State Department’s initial environmental review of the proposed pipeline failed to consider a host of environmental and public health problems, and a second review released last week also failed to address the same issues. We’ll keep you updated on how you can take action to oppose the Keystone pipeline.


~ by FSVSF Admin on 29 April, 2011.

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