DENlines August 04, 2005 5:54 AM
A Biweekly Update from Defenders of Wildlife:
Working to Save Wildlife and Wild Lands
Wildlife Win in Transportation Bill
Congress Passes Pork-Barrel Energy Bill
Conservationists Petition to Protect Declining Shorebird
Early Bird Wildlife Gift Adoptions
Campaign to Save Arctic Refuge Continues
Central American Trade Pact Bad for Wildlife
Australia's Koalas Need Your Help
1. Wildlife Win in Transportation Bill
Although roads and highways are never good for the environment, this time -- thanks largely to Defenders' hard work -- the federal transportation bill has historic provisions that will benefit America's wildlife. Defenders successfully lobbied to include wildlife for the first time when federal transportation dollars are spent. Although the bill also includes some bad environmental proposals, builders will at least have to consider wildlife when building new roads and highways. Thanks to all our members who sent letters, faxes and e-mails to support wildlife in the bill!
2. Congress Passes Pork-Barrel Energy Bill
Defenders worked hard to fight it, but the U.S. Congress still passed a multibillion-dollar energy bill that provides some funding for renewable energy, but is mostly full of pork-barrel projects for oil, gas and coal companies feeding at the federal trough. Even the Bush administration objected to some of the corporate welfare granted to the oil and gas industries by leading Republicans in Congress. Sadly, the bill will do nearly nothing to wean us off of foreign oil, nor greatly increase our use of renewables. Additionally, it will also likely expose the nation's coasts to more oil exploration and drilling.
3. Conservationists Petition to Protect Declining Shorebird
Defenders and other conservation groups have responded to an 80 percent decline in the population of a subspecies of the red knot by petitioning the federal government to emergency list the shorebird under the Endangered Species Act. The bird makes an 18,000-mile roundtrip journey each year from its winter home at the tip of South America to the Arctic. But one of their few stops, on the Delaware Bay, has lost much of its horseshoe crab population in recent years -- the eggs of which provide vital food for the birds. The red knot once numbered more than 100,000, but now count 17,000. If nothing is done to ensure their survival, recent scientific models predict extinction as early as 2010. Learn more.
4. Early Bird Wildlife Gift Adoptions
Help save wildlife and 10 percent on your holiday gift shopping through our Early Bird adoption offer. Simply log onto www.wildlifeadoption.org to adopt for that special someone, a wolf, tiger, sea otter, polar bear, snowy owl (for those Harry Potter fans) or other precious animal in need of protection. You can also call 1-800-385-9712. With each gift adoption, Defenders will send (free shipping) your gift recipient a plush animal and certificate of adoption to arrive in time for the holidays. Holiday gift adoptions are a wonderful way to pass on the legacy of conservation to family and friends. Enter code DEN10 on your adoption order form to receive your special 10 percent savings.
5. Campaign to Save Arctic Refuge Continues
It's crucial that the public realize that the fight to save the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge from oil and gas drilling is not over. Please visit and send friends to Defenders' Web site www.savearcticrefuge.org to take action to save one of America's last and greatest truly wild places.
6. Central American Trade Pact Bad for Wildlife
In a last-minute maneuver, the Bush administration successfully pushed the House of Representatives to pass by a tiny margin the Central American Free Trade Agreement. Experts at Defenders say the agreement has almost no protections for the environment or wildlife. We might have defeated CAFTA if Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Texas), who is facing ethics violations allegations, hadn't pulled another of his anti-democratic maneuvers and kept the vote open long past the deadline in order to essentially buy additional votes with legislative and funding favors. Learn more.
7. Australia's Koalas Need Your Help
Australia's koalas are in trouble and they need your help. In some areas, 90 percent of koala habitat has been destroyed by development. The animals could be gone altogether from the east coast of Australia in as few as 15 years. An Australian conservation organization is calling for the Australian government to protect the koala under their endangered species law. Visit www.savethekoala.com to learn more and take action to support the threatened koalas.
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DENlines is a biweekly update of Defenders of Wildlife, a leading national conservation organization recognized as one of the nation's most progressive advocates for wildlife and its habitat. It is known for its effective leadership on endangered species issues, particularly predators such as brown bears and gray wolves. Defenders also advocates new approaches to wildlife conservation that protect species before they become endangered. Founded in 1947, Defenders is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization with more than 480,000 members and supporters.
Defenders of Wildlife
1130 17th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20036
Copyright Defenders of Wildlife 2005
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