President Bush this weekend speechified and photo-op’ed for the environment, specifically courting the hunting and angling crowd through a fishing trip and wildlife refuge visit touting an executive order for sport fishing and conservation measures for migratory birds. The president’s migratory-bird plan involves asking Congress to increase tax incentives for landowners who donate conservation easements, and also includes a program that the administration called “recovery-credit trading,” that’s also aimed at property owners. Describing the trading system, Bush said, “Landowners can earn recovery credits for the habitat they improve and then they can sell those credits” — likely to federal agencies. Bush’s executive order prohibits the sale of two fish species prized by recreational fishers — striped bass and red drum — that are caught within 200 nautical miles of the U.S. If this sounds familiar, it’s because federal rules already prohibit the exact same thing. “It’s an executive order to close two fisheries that are already closed,” said Louis Daniels, director of North Carolina’s division of marine fisheries. “What’s the practical implications of this? Nothing.”

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