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Submit Feedback on the Izembek Nationwide Wildlife Refuge Discover of Intent — The Nationwide Wildlife Refuge Affiliation


    The Izembek Nationwide Wildlife Refuge wants your voice! The Division of the Inside is presently within the strategy of as soon as once more doubtlessly permitting a highway to be constructed by means of the guts of this internationally-renowned wilderness. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) is accepting public feedback from people and organizations on this course of no later than June 20, 2023.

    Earlier this yr, Secretary Haaland rescinded a 2019 proposed land trade that may have allowed a highway to be constructed within the Izembek NWR as a result of the method that approved the trade was flawed and never in step with Departmental coverage. The proposed highway would join the village of King Cove with an all-weather airstrip in Chilly Bay with the intent to supply an choice for emergency medical evacuations for King Cove residents. Now, the Division has renewed the method to assessment proposals for a land trade that may enable a highway, utilizing the identical illegal pretense because the earlier administration. 

    The legislation that established the Izembek NWR and over 100 million acres of conservation lands in Alaska, the Alaska Nationwide Curiosity Lands Conservation Act (ANILCA), permits for land exchanges provided that the aim is to learn the conservation or subsistence values of the world. ANILCA doesn’t enable for land exchanges to construct roads, and it doesn’t present the authority to the Secretary to authorize a land trade for this objective. On this renewed effort to authorize a highway, the Biden Administration perpetuates the suggestion that the Secretary of the Inside has the authority to commerce away congressionally designated wilderness to non-public events to permit roads or different growth initiatives. Such authority would implicate all of Alaska’s conservation lands, setting a precedent that different wilderness areas may be subjected to related trades to permit growth initiatives.

    Earlier proposals to assemble a highway by means of the ecological coronary heart of this distinctive nationwide wildlife refuge have up to now been unsuccessful because of the vital and irreversible harm it could make to one of many world’s most important wetlands and waterfowl habitats. This highway would have devastating impacts on greater than half one million Pacific brant, emperor geese, swans, and different wildlife, leading to habitat fragmentation, disturbance, and air pollution. These impacts on wildlife would additionally inevitably influence subsistence looking and harvesting for Indigenous communities that depend on these assets.

    These critically vital wetlands have to be protected for future generations. Izembek NWR is one among America’s most ecologically vital nationwide wildlife refuges and have to be safeguarded from these continued threats. Please be part of us in urging the USFWS and Secretary Haaland to decide on a non-road various moderately than execute a land trade for a highway by means of the Izembek Nationwide Wildlife Refuge. 

    Public feedback are due June twentieth, 2023. If you need to submit a customized remark, you’ll be able to submit it right here.

    Thanks to your continued assist in defending our planet’s treasured wildlife and the Nationwide Wildlife Refuge System.