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Press Release



Department of the Interior and Department of Commerce Submit Draft Legislation to Conserve Oceanic Birds



01/16/2009


Contact: Joan Moody
202-208-6416


WASHINGTON, D.C.--The Department of the Interior and the Department of Commerce today forwarded to Congress for consideration draft legislation titled the “Albatross and Petrel Conservation Act of 2009” to protect certain oceanic birds.

“The albatross and the petrel soar and glide, sometimes tens of thousands of miles each year. Though remarkably resilient, these majestic, well-traveled ocean wanderers face increasing threats to their survival,” said Deputy Secretary of the Interior Lynn Scarlett. “Today, we transmit to the Congress draft legislation to implement the ‘Agreement for the Conservation of Albatrosses and Petrels’ that, if passed by the Congress, will help to secure their future.”

This important international agreement entered into force on Feb. 1, 2004. On Sept. 26, 2008, President Bush transmitted the agreement to the U.S. Senate, recommending that it give its advice and consent to United States accession.

The draft legislation provides the United States, primarily through the Departments of the Interior and Commerce, with authority to adopt and implement conservation and management measures to address the most pressing threats to albatrosses and petrels in the wild, including habitat disturbance, nesting habitat degradation and loss, changes in food supply, pollution and marine debris, impacts from non-native species, and the incidental bycatch of birds in fisheries.