Bush may designate large marine reserves
Hoping to burnish President Bush’s conservation legacy, the White House is considering creating some of the largest marine reserves in the world, NPR reports. The plan — now being discussed, but not a sure thing — would have Bush use his powers under the Antiquities Act of 1906 to create “marine monuments,” which would not require the approval of Congress. In 2006, Bush used the Act to designate a vast marine reserve around the northwestern Hawaiian Islands. Last year, administration officials invited ocean advocates to a closed-door meeting to discuss the possibility of creating more reserves, where oil drilling, fishing, and other development would be banned. Areas under consideration include coral reefs in the Gulf of Mexico and in the Atlantic Ocean off the coasts of Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas, plus more far-flung spots near American-owned islands in the Pacific Ocean. A decision could be announced within a month.