WASHINGTON — Ducks Unlimited commends President Obama’s proposed increase of $10 million to the North American Wetlands Conservation Act (NAWCA), one of the most successful conservation programs in history. The fiscal year 2010 budget request is a nearly 25 percent increase over the FY 2009 request.
“We are very pleased to see the administration recognize the success that NAWCA has had through its 20 year history,” said Scott Sutherland, Director of the Governmental Affairs Office for Ducks Unlimited. “The program has conserved more than 23 million acres across North America since 1989, and this increase is acknowledgment of that success.”
Sutherland and other Ducks Unlimited staff worked with members of the presidential transition team to identify effective and proven conservation measures, including the NAWCA program.
The budget summary also notes that it is the administration’s intent to have NAWCA reach its full funding of $75 million per year by fiscal year 2012.
“This is great news for wetlands and waterfowl habitat, and we look forward to working with Members of the House and Senate towards this goal,” said Sutherland.
In addition to wetlands conservation, economic studies have demonstrated NAWCA to spurs the creation of more than 3,700 jobs annually in the United States.
In addition to the increase to NAWCA, the budget proposal includes funding for monitoring and adapting wildlife habitat in the face of climate change and funding for wetlands restoration in Louisiana and along the rest of the Gulf Coast.
With more than a million supporters, Ducks Unlimited is the world’s largest and most effective wetland and waterfowl conservation organization with more than 12 million acres conserved. The United States alone has lost more than half of its original wetlands - nature’s most productive ecosystem - and continues to lose more than 80,000 wetland acres important to waterfowl each year.