This piece was originally posted on the National Wildlife Federation's Wildlife Promise blog.
Outdoor industry leaders from across the country are in D.C. this week, asking Congress to dedicate BP’s Clean Water Act fines from the oil spill to Gulf restoration.
The oil spill hit the Mississippi River Delta particularly hard. The Delta hosts as many as 10 million ducks and geese during the winter and is famed for its diverse fishing opportunities. But this region was in trouble even before the spill. Over the past eight decades, the Delta has lost an area of wetlands almost as large as the state of Delaware.
We asked some of the sportsmen involved why they volunteered their time to come and talk to Congress about restoration of the Gulf of Mexico and the Mississippi River Delta. Here’s what they told us:
“These folks know how critical restoration of the Gulf and the Delta is to the future of waterfowl hunting in this country,” said Land Tawney, National Wildlife Federation's Senior Manager for Sportsmen’s Leadership. “It just makes sense to do right by the Gulf and direct the Clean Water Act penalties back to the places where the damage occurred.”
Vanishing Paradise, a joint effort of the National Wildlife Federation and Ducks Unlimited, organized the event and took out a full-page ad in Politico magazine with support from over twenty of the top hunting and angling companies and conservation organizations in the country, including The Sportsman Channel, B.A.S.S., The American Sportfishing Association, Drake Waterfowl, Frabill, Webley & Scott, and Lund Boats. You can send a similar message to Congress here.