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Legislation to Optimize Coordinated Conservation of Delaware Watershed

Press Release

Location: New Castle, DE

Rep. Castle Promotes Delaware River Basin Conservation Act

Today, Rep. Mike Castle (R-DE), co-chair of the Delaware River Basin Task Force (along with Reps. Dent, Hinchey, and Holt) in the U.S. House of Representatives, was joined by the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC), the Delaware River Basin Commission, and Delaware conservation organizations to promote the Delaware River Basin Conservation Act of 2010, federal legislation he recently introduced to further coordinate conservation efforts in the Delaware watershed. The Delaware River Basin includes parts of the states of Delaware, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania.

"Under this legislation, we will be creating a needed federal umbrella charged with carrying out a coordinated strategy for protection and restoration efforts in the Delaware watershed, one of the nation's most important water bodies and natural landscapes," said Rep. Mike Castle. "I am grateful to be working with so many great partners in Delaware on this bill, and remain committed to working with stakeholders on the conservation of this national treasure of great cultural, environmental, and ecological importance."

"The Nature Conservancy applauds Congressman Castle's legislation that helps foster collaborative conservation efforts between state, federal, and NGO entities throughout the Delaware River Basin," said Andrew Manus, Director of Conservation Programs for the Delaware Chapter.

"For more than 45 years, the Delaware River, Bay, and vicinity have been a central focus of the Delaware Nature Society's education programs and environmental protection initiatives," stated Jennifer Mills, Associate Director of the Natural Resources Conservation. "We applaud Congressman Castle's efforts to develop coordination among the various federal, state, and local stakeholders within the Delaware River Basin to maximize resources, share scientific data, and accomplish shared goals."

Unlike other geographic watershed programs, the Delaware River Basin lacks a Basin-wide coordinated conservation strategy and dedicated federal support. The Delaware River Basin Conservation Act of 2010 builds on current efforts in the Basin, and provides a non-regulatory framework for coordinating conservation and provides a competitive grant program and technical assistance for on-the-ground projects; it prioritizes living resources, restoring and protecting fish and wildlife habitat, and water quality.

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