It’s been less than two years since the petition on behalf of the Pacific smelt, and government protections may begin before the year is out. That’s a great improvement – and something we need to see a lot more of. I’m keeping my fingers crossed, on behalf of all the other species that have petitions pending.
Environmentalists need to consider the meaning of the ribbon seal ruling, which suggests that future conditions will often not provide a solid foundation for present-day action through the Endangered Species Act.
Let’s not just blame Sarah Palin for the troubles of the Cook Inlet belugas. Remember that Endangered Species Act protections for the Cook Inlet belugas were first requested in 1999. President Bill Clinton had almost two years to act on that request, but he failed to do so.
Cook Inlet is surrounded by four public parks: Kenai Fjiords National Park, Lake Clark National Park and Preserve, Katmai National Monument, and Chugach State Park. The area is a national treasure. Yet, Sarah Palin treats it like a dump.