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E-M:/ Please call to stop Senate Interior riders ASAP!!!
- Subject: E-M:/ Please call to stop Senate Interior riders ASAP!!!
- From: "Liz Godfrey" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
- Date: Thu, 29 Jun 2000 13:38:04 -0500
- List-Name: Enviro-Mich
- Reply-To: "Liz Godfrey" <email@example.com>
Enviro-Mich message from "Liz Godfrey" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
I need your help right now!! The U.S. Senate has ants in their pants right
now and they are trying to push this year's Appropriations bills through as
fast as possible. This has given the environmental community little time to
catch up and figure out what anti-environmental riders are attached to these
bills. The Senate will take up the Interior Appropriations bill this
evening and all day tomorrow. There are a number of nasty little attacks
attached to it that we need to fight (see list). In addition, Sen. Larry
Craig of Idaho has threatened to attach at least 3 additional riders on the
floor. One of which will attempt to block and/or slow down the Clinton
Administrations Roadless policy for our National Forests.
ACTION: Please call SENATORS LEVIN AND ABRAHAM right now and ask them to
vocally oppose and remove anti-environmental riders on the Senate floor
tonight and to oppose any further attempts to attach such riders. Capitol
Switchboard: 202-224-3121. 877-722-7494 may also connect you toll free.
Thanks for all your help!!
GREEN Northland Organizer
the GrassRoots Environmental Effectiveness Network
*powering the Endangered Species Coalition*
Riders on Senate Interior Appropriations bill (HR 4578)
Seriously impacting threatened and endangered species:
1) Title I: Limit funding for Listing and Critical Habitat Designation
Under the Endangered Species Act - would cap funding for endangered
species listing and designation of their critical habitat at only
$6.395 million. The legislative language tries to set a cap on how
much the Department of Interior can spend to add new species to the
protected list. The cap language also limits designation of critical
habitat, which identifies areas essential to species recovery, provides
notice to the public and federal agencies, and incorporates economic
analysis. The Fish and Wildlife Service needs additional money to deal
with the backlog of more than 1,000 species (out of 1,200 listed in the
U.S.) that still need critical habitat designation. In addition, final
decisions are needed for more than 320 species currently proposed or
candidates for protection. It is intended to prevent citizens, and the
courts, from ordering Fish and Wildlife Service to complete its listing
and critical habitat decisions. A similar provision was included in the
final bill signed into law last year. (A similar provision was also
added in the House version).
2) Section 119: Give U. S. Army Corps Veto Authority Over New National
Wildlife Refuge - would prohibit use of funds made available in the act
from being "used to establish a national wildlife refuge in the
Kankakee River basin that is inconsistent with U.S. Army Corps of
Engineers efforts to control flooding and siltation in that area."
The Grand Kankakee Marsh in northwestern Indiana and northeastern
Illinois was once one of the largest and most important freshwater
wetland ecosystems in North America, providing essential habitat to a
spectacular variety of waterfowl, wading birds and other wildlife.
Today, however, 95-percent of the Grand Kankakee Marsh has been drained
for agriculture and development. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
has proposed establishing the Grand Kankakee National Wildlife Refuge
along the Kankakee in order to restore and preserve 30,000 acres (less
than one-percent of the land within the river basin) of wetlands, oak
savannas, and native tallgrass prairies. Although the public
overwhelmingly supports the proposed refuge, for the third year in a
row, certain members of Congress are attempting to hinder the proposal
by including a legislative rider in the House Interior Appropriations
bill. The current language sets a dangerous precedent of essentially
giving veto authority to another agency (the Corps) over establishment
of a National Wildlife Refuge. A similar provision was included in the
final bill signed into law last year. (A similar provision was also
added in the House version).
3) Delay Grizzly Bear Recovery Efforts - would prohibit funds to be
used for physically reintroducing grizzly bears in the 18-million-acre
Selway Bitterroot ecosystem during fiscal year 2001 as part of a
federal recovery program. The language also calls for an unnecessary
peer review process to establish "conclusive evidence" that enough
habitat exists to support bears in the Selway Bitterroot wilderness.
The proposed peer review process repeats what has already been done and
also assigns this task to the Citizens Management Committee, a body
that lacks the scientific credentials to undertake such a review. The
ability of threatened grizzly bears to live and thrive in this remote
area, roughly twice the size of the greater Yellowstone ecosystem, has
been established repeatedly by scientists including most recently by
Dr. Mark Boyce of the University of Alberta in a study requested via
Senate appropriations report language in 1998. The Bitterroot grizzly
recovery effort is an experimental approach advocated by a diverse
coalition of timber, environmental, and labor interests and designed to
incorporate citizens input to allay local concerns about bear
management. (REPORT LANGUAGE)
4) Needlessly Thwart Wolf Recovery in Oregon - would direct the U.S.
Fish and Wildlife Service to automatically remove endangered gray
wolves which enter Oregon from neighboring Idaho. The language is
contrary to the intent of the Endangered Species Act and the purpose of
the federally funded reintroduction of wolves to central Idaho and
Yellowstone National Park five years ago. Scientific studies have shown
that Oregon has adequate habitat to support a viable population of
wolves and recolonization of that habitat supports wolf recovery in the
lower 48 states. In addition, a survey of Oregon's voters taken last
year when a female wolf crossed the Idaho border indicated that those
supporting leaving recolonizing wolves in Oregon outnumbered those
favoring removal by more than a two to one margin. Moreover, the US
Fish and Wildlife Service in conjunction with the Confederated tribes
of the Umatilla and Nez Perce Nations and Defenders of Wildlife has
already initiated a series of public meetings designed to educate and
inform Oregonians about wolves and living in wolf country. Defenders
of Wildlife has also agreed to extend their wolf compensation trust to
these newly recolonized areas. The highly effective program reimburses
ranchers in the event that a reintroduced wolf is verified to have
killed livestock. (REPORT LANGUAGE)
Other riders on Senate Interior Appropriations bill:
5) Section 116: Allows Damaging Grazing on Public Lands to Continue
Without Environmental Review - would allow grazing on public lands to
continue without environmental review regardless of the environmental
damage that is occurring and notwithstanding the congressional
commitment last year not to enact this rider again. This rider would
allow the Bureau of Land Management and other Interior Department
agencies to extend indefinitely grazing permits that expire or are
transferred in the coming fiscal year without reviews required under
federal environmental statutes, including the National Environmental
Policy Act (NEPA), the Federal Land Policy and Management Act and the
Endangered Species Act even though last year, Congress explicitly
stated, in the report that accompanied the appropriations bill, that it
would suspend these laws for one year only. (A similar provision was
also added in the House version).
6) Sec. 123: Prevent Restoration of Glen Canyon and the Colorado River
- would prevent land managers from studying or implementing any plan to
drain Lake Powell or to reduce the water level in Lake Powell below the
range required to operate Glen Canyon dam.
7) Sec. 320: Delay National Forest Planning - would impose a funding
limitation to halt the revision of any forest plans not already
undergoing revision, except for the forests legally mandated to have
their plans completed during calendar year FY2001, until final or
interim final planning regulations are adopted.
8) Sec. 328: Tongass Red Cedar Rider - would continue the failed policy
of exporting wood and jobs off the Tongass National Forest by
leveraging the amount of Western Red Cedar available for export to the
lower 48 and international markets against the percentage of the
Tongass' allowable sale quantity (ASQ) that is actually sold.
9) Sec. 326: Undermine Consensus-Based River Management - would inhibit
the cooperation and support of Federal resource agencies such as the
Fish and Wildlife Service, US Forest Service, National Park Service and
others, in the work of the American Heritage Rivers Initiative (AHRI)
10) Sec. 329: Hamper Climate Protection - would hamper U.S.
participation in international activity on climate change.
11) Sec. 335: Allow Lead Mining in Ozark National Scenic Riverways -
would prohibit the Secretary of the Interior from taking any action to
prohibit mining activities in the Mark Twain National Forest and the
watersheds of the Current, Jacks Fork, and the Eleven Point rivers in
the Missouri Ozarks.
12) Sec. 336: Stewardship and End Result Contracting Demonstration
Project - would permit the Forest Service to contract with private
entities to perform services to achieve land management goals in
national forests in Idaho and Montana, and in eastern Oregon and
13) Sec. 3__: Continue Delays for Colorado Forest Protection - would
delay a final decision on the White River National Forest Plan by
forcing the Forest Service to spend months or years preparing a
'regulatory flexibility analysis' to analyze the Plan's impact on small
14) Sec. 3__: Block Roadless Area Protection for the White Mountain
National Forest - would prohibit the application of the Forest
Service's Roadless Area Conservation policy on the White Mountain
National Forest in New Hampshire.
15) Use Taxpayer Money To Fund Private Lobbying Initiative - would
allocate $1,000,000 to a program identified as Undaunted Stewardship,
"...which will allow local control over grants to protect historic
sites along the historic Lewis and Clark Trail by implementation of
best management practices, evaluation of easement alternatives, and a
stewardship certification program." Undaunted Stewardship is a non-
government initiative sponsored by the Montana Stockgrowers Association
and other opponents of a potential designation of a National Monument
along the Upper Missouri River in Montana.
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