To unsubscribe from the list, send email to audubon-news-request@xxxxxxxxxxxxx with 'unsubscribe' in the Subject field. > Contact: Bob Perciasepe > Perry Plumart > 202-861-2242 > bperciasepe@xxxxxxxxxxx > pplumart@xxxxxxxxxxx > > AUDUBON SUPPORTS WETLANDS PROTECTION BILL > > Washington, D.C., February 27, 2003 - Audubon today hailed proposed > legislation that would restore federal protection for millions of acres of > wetlands that provide crucial habitat for birds and other wildlife. > > The Clean Water Authority Restoration Act seeks to remedy a 2001 Supreme > Court decision that removed federal protection for so-called > "> isolated> > "> wetlands across the United States. That decision said federal officials > could not rely on the Migratory Bird Treaty Act - or the presence of > migrating birds - as the sole factor when acting to protect wetlands that are > separated from navigable waterways or other wetlands. > > "> The phrase > '> isolated wetlands> '> masks the fact that these wetlands > are directly connected to birds and people,> "> said Bob Perciasepe, > Audubon> '> s Senior VP for Policy. > "> Isolated wetlands provide critical > nesting and habitat for birds while providing water purification and flood > control benefits for people.> "> > > More than half of the duck population produced each year in North America > comes from breeding in isolated wetlands known as > "> prairie potholes,> "> > for example. Prairie potholes provide vital habitat for hundreds of > thousands of migratory shorebirds and endangered species including piping > plovers and bald eagles. These wetlands are in danger of disappearing as more > land is used for agriculture and development. > > "> At a time when 40% of our nation> '> s waters are still polluted, we > should be working to make our country> '> s waterways cleaner and healthier, > not questioning whether some need to be protected. This legislation is a > recognition that most Americans feel this debate ended over 30 years ago and > that we should be getting on with the work to finish the job,> "> said > Perciasepe. > > Other types of isolated wetlands, such as bogs and playas, provide crucial > habitat for shorebirds, raptors, cranes and other migratory birds. Isolated > wetlands, which are connected hydrologically to navigable waters, also filter > pollutants from surface run-off, removing pollutants before the water is > taken up by animals, birds and plants. > > The legislation was introduced today in the Senate and in the House, and is > cosponsored by Sens. Russ Feingold (D-WI), Barbara Boxer (D-CA), and James > Jeffords (I-VT), and Reps. James Oberstar (D-MN), John Dingell (D-MI), Jim > Leach (R-IA), and Sherwood Boehlert (R-NY). > > Audubon is dedicated to protecting birds and other wildlife and the habitat > that supports them. Our national network of community-based nature centers > and chapters, scientific and educational programs, and advocacy on behalf of > areas sustaining important bird populations, engage millions of people of all > ages and backgrounds in positive conservation experiences. > > # # # > > You are subscribed to Audubon-News. To unsubscribe, send email to audubon-news-request@xxxxxxxxxxxxx with 'unsubscribe' in the Subject field. To adjust other settings (vacation, digest, etc.) please visit, http://www.freelists.org/list/audubon-news.