WASHINGTON, D.C. (May 11, 2011) –
The Wildlife Conservation Society applauded the introduction of H.R.
1760, the Great Ape Conservation Reauthorization Amendments Act of 2011,
and H.R. 1761, the Marine Turtle Conservation Reauthorization Act, in
the House of Representatives.
bills would reauthorize the Great Ape Conservation Fund and the Marine
Turtle Conservation Fund, which are Multinational Species Conservation
Fund (MSCF) accounts administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
for international conservation. Rep. George Miller (D-CA) is the lead
sponsor of the Great Ape legislation while Rep. Pedro Pierluisi
(D-Puerto Rico) is the lead for the Marine Turtle legislation, and both
are joined by a bipartisan group of original co-sponsors. Along with
H.R. 50, introduced by Rep. Don Young (R-AK), these bills form a suite
of legislation that will reauthorize all of the MSCF including those for
rhinos and tigers, African elephants, and Asian elephants.
thank Congressmen Miller and Pierluisi for their extraordinary efforts
on behalf of some of our most threatened iconic species,” said John F.
Calvelli, WCS Executive Vice President of Public Affairs. “The Species
Funds are proven to make an impact toward on-the-ground conservation and
we need to ensure they receive the Congressional support necessary to
remain successful. I urge the House of Representatives to quickly pass
these important bipartisan bills.”
Great Ape and Marine Turtle Conservation Funds have supported projects
by several conservation organizations around the world. The discovery
of 125,000 western lowland gorillas, triggering the creation of three
new national parks in the Republic of Congo, was supported by the Great
Ape Conservation Fund. The Marine Turtle Conservation Fund supports
nesting beach protection and anti-poaching efforts in Central America
that are providing refuge for growing numbers of hawksbill turtles.
George Miller said, “International efforts to conserve these truly
amazing creatures are working, but they desperately need our continued
support. A small contribution from the federal government makes a big
difference in the field. We should remain vigilant in protecting our
closest non-human relatives – the great apes – from human threats around
the world, while at the same time building stronger relationships with
countries in Africa and Asia. The Great Apes conservation program has
been a great success over the last decade and my colleagues and I
strongly believe we should allow it to continue the good work it funds.”
Pedro Pierluisi said, “Through its Marine Turtle Conservation Fund, the
United States plays a leading role in the protection and recovery of
marine sea turtles. Marine sea turtles are important to the health of
our ocean and their imperiled status obligates us to continue our
efforts to conserve them and their nesting habitats. By reauthorizing
the Marine Turtle Conservation Act, Congress would renew our nation’s
commitment to support on-the-ground partnerships and the science needed
to most effectively monitor, protect and recover the most threatened
populations of marine sea turtles abroad.”
the Great Ape Conservation Fund and Marine Turtle Conservation Fund
will be beneficiaries of a new Wildlife Semipostal Stamp, which will be
issued by the U.S. Postal Service in September 2011. The stamp will be
sold at a premium price, with the residual funds supporting the MSCF at
no cost to taxpayers.
Contact: Chip Weiskotten: (202-624-8172; email@example.com)Mary Dixon: (347-840-1242; firstname.lastname@example.org)
The Wildlife Conservation Society
saves wildlife and wild places worldwide. We do so through science,
global conservation, education and the management of the world's largest
system of urban wildlife parks, led by the flagship Bronx Zoo.
Together these activities change attitudes towards nature and help
people imagine wildlife and humans living in harmony. WCS is committed
to this mission because it is essential to the integrity of life on
Join more than one million wildlife lovers working to save the Earth's most treasured and threatened species.
Thanks for signing up