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Wildlife, it turns out, isn’t too savvy about political borders – whether those borders divide countries or states. Sportsmen and conservation groups pointed that out in different ways this week when they protested a bill that would strip away environmental protections within 100 miles of U.S. borders. In a separate action, groups also urged greater regulatory cooperation in managing roadless lands that straddle state borders.
Pew Environment Group officials on Thursday said a proposed U.S. House bill aimed at increasing border security gives “unprecedented authority to a single federal agency to destroy wildlife habitat and wetlands …” The National Security and Federal Lands Protection Act (H.R. 1505), debated Thursday by the House Natural Resources Committee, would allow the Department of Homeland Security to override 36 environmental laws.
U.S. Sen. Mark Udall's new streamlined Good Samaritan legislation, designed to encourage volunteer water cleanup projects, may yet become law. It is the 11th piece of Good Samaritan legislation to be introduced in Congress in the last 15 years. Udall's bill, however, is drawing more support and less opposition than the previous bills, all of which failed to gain traction on Capitol Hill.