There are seven species of sea turtles in the whole world and five of them spend some of their time at North Carolina's Cape Hatteras National Seashore. Three return every year to lay eggs on the beaches. Sadly human activity remains the greatest threat to their survival, including the threat of off-road vehicles (ORV) driving on these beaches.
Early this year, the National Park Service (NPS), urged on by thousands of public comments in 2011, released a plan to limit ORV use at Cape Hatteras to protect sea turtles, rare birds and the beaches.
Unfortunately, Senators Kay Hagan and Richard Burr introduced a bill that would overturn the NPS plan. If passed, this legislation would endanger pedestrians, nesting sites for sea turtles and rare shorebirds at Cape Hatteras beaches.
Stop this bad beach driving bill. Tell Senators Hagan and Burr and N.C. House Representatives to oppose S. 2372 and instead to support the NPS plan to protect sea turtles, rare birds and our natural beaches.
I am extremely disappointed in Senator Hagan and Senator Burr's decision to introduce S. 2372, a bill which would overturn the National Park Service's reasonable plan to manage driving on the beaches at Cape Hatteras National Seashore. S. 2372 completely disregards sound science, federal laws and years of public participation and constituents' comments that support reasonable limits on beach driving on our natural beaches. For the same reasons, I also oppose the identical bill introduced by Rep. Walter Jones, HR 4094.
Cape Hatteras is a North Carolina coastal treasure, and a very sensitive region where rare sea turtles and shorebirds nest. The National Park Service plan ensures responsible vehicle operations in the presence of nesting sea turtles, rare birds, and pedestrians. The new National Park Service rule still designates off-road vehicle use on the majority of the national seashore and keeps all of the seashore's beaches open to pedestrians.
Please, do the right thing, and protect Cape Hatteras National Seashore's beaches and our threatened and endangered wildlife by opposing any attempt to weaken or repeal the National Park Service plan for Cape Hatteras National Seashore. Please oppose both S. 2372 and HR 4094.
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