Conservation Roundup: Newspapers, Hunting, Fishing Save the Planet

Fish, wildlife experts to Obama: Stand firm on regulations
Sportsmen fighting industries to protect public fish and wildlife habitat are getting support from former heads of federal agencies that have managed these lands. Eight former agency chiefs sent a letter to President Obama urging him to stand firm on the regulatory reform that has reduced the impact of development on fish and wildlife habitat critical to sportsmen. Industries oppose many of the changes because it costs them money.

The letter came a few days after a federal judge in Cheyenne, Wyo., threw out a May 2010 order by the by BLM Director Bob Abbey requiring greater scrutiny of "categorical exclusions" - a process that allows regulators to exempt large sections of leases on public lands from certain [environmental reviews](http://www.blm.gov/wo/st/en/info/regulations/Instruction_Memos_and_Bulletin s/national_instruction/2010/IM_2010-118.html).

Could newspapers save the planet?
OK, that's an intentionally misleading headline from an old newspaperman. But this item from Tulane University at least approaches the idea. Seems researchers at New Orleans University have discovered old newsprint provides a bacteria that can [produce a biofuel](http://tulane.edu/news/newwave/082511_fuel.cfm?utm_source=nwe&utm_medium=ema il&utm_campaign=nwe ), which, in turn, would reduce our carbon footprint; which would reduce global warming -- which could save the planet!

You can't do that with the Internet.

Want to help fish and wildlife? Go hunting and fishing
Tough times in Texas brings a reminder that the most successful conservation model in history is still critical: User fees paid by sportsmen. After state budget cutters took a 21.5 percent bite out of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Division operating funds, Carter Smith, TPWD executive director, had this advice to sportsmen looking at reduced services: "These are challenging times for all state agencies, but if those who love wildlife and parks feel moved to help, there is an easy way to do so. It's this simple: go fishing and hunting, and visit your state parks. Regardless of how often you go, when you buy a license or a state park pass, it's an investment in the user-pay, user-benefit model of North American conservation. We will need healthy license sales and park attendance to get us through the next two years. Also, the legislature created a vehicle registration donation option that is very important for state parks."