Angling for Love in All the Wrong Places
Bush touts sport-fishing executive order
and migratory-bird conservation plan
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,” which is 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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