Friday, December 01, 2006

Recovery plan for orcas: $50M, 30 years

Recovery plan for orcas: $50M, 30 years
By Warren Cornwall
Seattle Times staff reporter

Saving Puget Sound's orcas from extinction will mean protecting 2,500 square
miles of waterways, the possible regulation of whale watching, redoubling
efforts to recover salmon and scrutinizing environmental hazards from flame
retardants to ship noise, a new federal plan says.

And it could take nearly three decades and cost $50 million.

The proposed recovery plan released Tuesday by the National Marine Fisheries
Service is a first look at how the federal government wants to save the
orcas since it declared them endangered under the Endangered Species Act
last year.

But environmentalists offered mixed reviews, saying that it offers a
valuable framework but doesn't go far enough. On the other hand,
property-rights advocates who object to the listing in the first place
continue to warn that it could mean restrictions on everything from ship
traffic to development.

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