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Cape Hatteras National Seashore Identifies Pre-Nesting Closure Areas For Piping Plover

Though it's been a mostly quiet winter on the coast of North Carolina, things might get a bit testy in the coming weeks as Cape Hatteras National Seashore releases its pre-nesting closure plans to protect piping plovers, a threatened species.
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CAHA-Pre-Nesting Closures 2009.pdf210.9 KB

NPCA, PEER Voice Concerns Over Proposed Mountain Bike Rule Change In National Parks

Mountain bike accessibility in national parks could expand exponentially under a rule change proposed by the Bush administration, according to the National Parks Conservation Association.
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NPCA Bike Comments 2.17.09.pdf160.61 KB
PEER-Mtn Bike Comments.pdf13.04 KB

NPCA, Congressman Issa Battle Over Propriety of Stimulus Funding for National Parks

Congressman Darrell Issa's continued assault on the propriety of national park stimulus funding in House of Representatives legislation drew a harsh response Tuesday from the National Parks Conservation Association, which accused the Republican of libeling the organization.
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Issa-Obey Report.pdf410.99 KB

Are We Properly Caring for Our Ocean-Based National Parks?

There was an essay recently that brought to my attention a startling figure: Even though there are nearly 1,700 marine protected areas in U.S. territorial waters, 99.9 percent of all our territorial waters were open to fishing in 2008.

Second Round of National Park Service "Centennial Projects" Produces $27 Million Worth of Improvements

Rehabilitation projects, invasive species eradication and biodiversity research were among the $27 million worth of Centennial Initiative projects for the National Park System announced Tuesday by Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne and NPS Director Mary Bomar.
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Centennial at a Glance 2008.pdf165.56 KB

Accessibility in the National Park System

The other day I read a story about efforts at Cape Lookout National Seashore to install an ADA accessible ramp. And that got me to wondering about how accessible the National Park System is.
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access_national_parks.pdf313.42 KB

Brady Campaign Sues Interior Department over Concealed Carry in National Parks

The Brady Campaign has filed a lawsuit against the Interior Department over its plans to allow national park visitors to arm themselves. While the rule change is set to take effect January 9, the lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia also seeks an injunction to prevent that from occurring.
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Brady Campaign-Kempthorne.pdf736.01 KB

Bush Administration Publishes Proposed Rule For Mountain Biking in National Parks

In what's being described as another example of the Bush administration whittling away the conservation ethic of the National Park Service, the Interior Department today published a proposed rule to "streamline" the regulatory landscape regarding mountain bikes in national parks.
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Proposed Bike Rule.pdf58.05 KB

NRDC Calls For Endangered Species Act Protection for Whitebark Pine Tree

While most often we hear about fish, bird, or animal species needing Endangered Species Act protection, today a group is asking the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to extend that protection to a tree, the whitebark pine.
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Whitebark Pine Petition.pdf1.51 MB

From Job Creation to Everglades Czar, Green Groups Have Lengthy National Parks Wishlist

Lower Falls, Yellowstone National Park. Kurt Repanshek photo.
A coalition of nearly 30 "green groups" has a lengthy to-do list for the incoming Obama administration when it comes to the National Park System. For starters, they say, let's include the parks in the economic stimuli being proposed, expect more from National Park Service leadership, and protect the natural resources.
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Transition to Green - NPS.pdf229.76 KB

Study Touts Economic Benefits of Mount St. Helens "National Park"

There's an economic report out touting the benefits that a Mount St. Helens "National Park" would bring surrounding communities. And that begs the question of whether units of the National Park System should be viewed largely as economic engines?
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Mount St. Helens Economics.pdf174.7 KB

Updated: Dueling Judges Push Yellowstone National Park Snowmobile Limit Back to 720 Per Day

In one of the most bizarre public lands dramas in recent history, Yellowstone National Park officials Monday afternoon said they would allow up to 720 snowmobiles into the park every day this winter.
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Brimmer-Snowmobiles.pdf132 KB

Bush Administration Poised to Sell Oil and Gas Leases Around Dinosaur National Monument, Arches and Canyonlands National Parks

How much is too much? When the oil and gas industry in Utah has nearly 3,500 drilling permits in hand, but which have not been acted upon, why is the Bush administration selling them more, particularly in sensitive areas around national parks and monuments?
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GAO-Drilling Report.pdf733.79 KB

Updated: Bush Administration: "A Legacy of Failure for Our Public Lands," Claims Congressman Grijalva

During the past eight years the Bush administration has "pushed a concerted strategy of reducing the protections for our public lands, parks, and forests, and opening up these lands for every type of private, commercial and extractive industry possible." So says Congressman Raul Grijalva.
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Grijalva_Public_Lands_Report.pdf340.24 KB

Rockfalls Down Upon Curry Camp in Yosemite National Park Are Not Unusual

The most recent rockfalls from Glacier Point in Yosemite National Park are not the first to shower Curry Camp and certainly won't be the last. With that in mind, geologists are taking a close look at Glacier Point to try to determine just how safe, or unsafe, its rock face is.
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YOSE Rockfalls-USGS.pdf581.68 KB

Appellate Court Upholds Lower Court Ruling on Development at Gateway National Recreation Area

A federal appellate court in New Jersey has upheld a lower court's finding that the National Park Service was within its rights to lease nearly three dozen historic buildings at Gateway National Recreation Area to a commercial developer.

Federal Judge Blocks Recreational Snowmobiling in Yellowstone National Park

A federal judge, ruling that Yellowstone National Park's decision to continue recreational snowmobile use in the park runs counter to science and the National Park Service's conservation mission, has tossed out the park's winter-use plan.
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Yellowstone Snowmobile Ruling-9-15-08.pdf213.2 KB

Grammar Vigilantes Busted in Grand Canyon National Park, Barred from Park System

Missing commas and wayward apostrophes are an endangered species when confronted by Jeff Michael Deck and Benjamin Douglas Herson. But that was before the grammar vigilantes ran afoul of the law after editing an historic sign in Grand Canyon National Park.
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NPS-Sign Vandals.pdf251.83 KB

Presidential Politics and the National Parks

With the Democratic National Convention under way, and the Republican National Convention soon to follow, it's natural to wonder what these two parties are thinking of in terms of the environment in general and national parks specifically.
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2008 Draft Democratic Platform.pdf253.24 KB
NPCA_Phone_Online_Survey_Results.pdf65.75 KB

What's the Solution For Cape Hatteras National Seashore?

The spit of sand that buffers the North Carolina coast from the worst the Atlantic Ocean can toss at it carries a wide array of contentious issues that seemingly have no easy answers. And as with most contentious issues, there's no doubt a measure of spin when talk comes to access at Cape Hatteras National Seashore.
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CAHA-ORV Map.pdf1.31 MB

Federal Judge Refuses to Let County Cut Highways in Roadless Section of Death Valley National Park

A desire by county officials in California to open roads in roadless areas of Death Valley National Park has been doused by a federal judge, who says the officials missed their opportunity years ago.
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Death Valley Ruling.pdf142.53 KB

Commission Formed To Explore Future of National Parks

Noted biologist E.O. Wilson and former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor are among the notables on a non-partisan commission appointed to study the future of the National Park System.
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Second Century Commission-Bios.doc106 KB

Everglades Coalition, Foundation Offer State of Florida Suggestions for Managing Land Acquisition

In June the state of Florida announced a bold move to help the Everglades by purchasing nearly 200,000 acres north of Everglades National Park. Now the state is being offered some suggestions on how best to leverage that land acquisition for the benefit of the "River of Grass."
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EVER-EAA Recommendations.pdf46.46 KB

Judge Restores ESA Protection for Wolves in Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem-Updated

A federal judge has restored Endangered Species Act protection for wolves in the greater Yellowstone ecosystem, rejecting the Interior Department's contention that the species is well on its way to recovery.
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Wolf Ruling.pdf133.6 KB

Study Claims National Park Service is Failing to Protect Biscayne National Park's Coral Reefs

The National Park Organic Act of 1916 directed the fledging National Park Service to, more than anything else, protect the resources of the growing National Park System. Sadly, a new report contends the agency is failing to do just that at Biscayne National Park, where coral reefs are facing "imminent" collapse.

Senators Willing to Legislate Clean Air Over National Parks if EPA Does Protect Airsheds

A bipartisan group of U.S. senators has gone on record with the director of the Environmental Protection Agency that they will find legislative solutions to provide clean air over national parks if his agency can't protect those airsheds.
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EPA visibility Alexander Letter.pdf473.68 KB

Congressman Accuses Sec. Kempthorne of Pandering to NRA on Gun Issue

Congressman Raul Grijalva, who heads the House subcommittee on national parks, is accusing Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne of pandering to the National Rifle Association.
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Grijalva_Kempthorne_Letter_05_22_08.pdf54.49 KB

Traveler's View: Concealed Weapons Have No Place In Our National Park System

There is no need, nor justification, to allow concealed weapons into the National Park System. Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne needs to stand up to the National Rifle Association and for the National Park System.
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NPS Firearms-history.pdf149.38 KB
NPS Directors-Guns.pdf93.94 KB

Is the National Park Service Obligated to Better Promote Proposed Change in Gun Regulations?

Does the National Park Service have an obligation -- before the public comment period closes -- to better inform the general public about proposed changes to the existing gun regulations? While those who closely follow national park issues and gun issues more than likely are aware of the proposal to allow park visitors to arm themselves, does the general park-going public?
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Ranger_Groups_letter_to_Park_Service.pdf48.79 KB

National Park Service Sued Over Personal Watercraft at Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, Gulf Islands National Seashore

In an action sure to inflame some national park visitors, Friends of the Earth and The Wilderness Society have sued the National Park Service to reinstate bans against personal watercraft at Gulf Islands National Seashore and Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore.
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Jet Ski Lawsuit.pdf1.07 MB
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