Dubya Creates Ocean Monument
There I was, half asleep, trying to ignore the rising sun, when NPR ran a story about President Bush waving his presidential pen to create a national monument bigger than all the national parks combined. A monument bigger than Montana and about the size of California.
For a minute I wondered if Bill Clinton hadn't somehow channeled Dubya's inner environmentalist.
Then, reading the morning paper, the story surfaced before me again. He actually plans to do it. Sometime today Dubya will create a national monument in the Pacific Ocean spanning roughly 140,000 square miles, a preserve built around a 1,200-mile-long chain of islands, sea, surf and sand now known as the Northern Hawaiian Islands.
Obviously, there's no oil to be found beneath these waves. That's good, for the area supports an amazing array of sea life, from endangered green sea turtles to Hawaiian monk seals. All told, there are an estimated 7,000 marine species in the area, including coral reefs.
You can read the details of what prompted Dubya to create this sanctuary at the New York Times.