Legislative Victories - 1960s

1960 - Sikes Act - This act requires all U.S. military reservations to develop, maintain, and coordinate conservation programs for wildlife, fish, and game.

1961 - Wetlands Loan Act - An advanced, interest-free appropriation to the Migratory Bird Hunting Stamp Fund (to acquire refuges and waterfowl pro¬duction areas) of up to $105 million for a 7-year period was authorized.

1963 - Clean Air Act - Acting on its own or at the request of a state, the De¬partment of Health, Education, and Welfare (and now the Environmental Protection Agency) can initiate public hearings, conferences, and court pro¬ceedings to effect compliance with air pollution regulations.

1964 - Wilderness Act - The National Wilderness System was created out of wilderness, wild, and canoe areas of the national forests and provision was made for a review system for the inclusion of additional wilderness areas.

1964 - Land and Water Conservation Fund Act - Monies collected primarily from offshore oil and gas leases are used to fund a variety of state and federal recreational programs and to acquire recreational lands. Later amendments to the act increased the total annual expenditure, increased the proportion of the fund to be contributed by the federal government, and allowed the fund to be used to acquire areas needed for conserving endangered and threatened species of plants or animals.

1966 - Endangered Species Preservation Act The secretary of the interior is directed to carry out a land acquisition program to "conserve, protect, restore, and propagate selected species of native fish and wildlife" in the United States. Up to $15 million from the Land and Water Conservation Fund can be used for acquisition.

1966 - National Wildlife Refuge System Act- This act provides for administration and management of all areas in a national system of wildlife refuges, areas for the protection and conservation of fish and wildlife that are threatened with extinction, wildlife ranges, game ranges, wildlife management areas, and waterfowl production areas. A major stimulating factor for the refuge system was the passage of the Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp Act, otherwise known as the "duck stamp act".

1968 - Wild and Scenic Rivers Act - Segments of seven major rivers in their free-flowing state were set aside for recreational and conservation purposes; provision was made to add to the system.

1968 - National Trails System Act - A national trail system was established, comprising National Recreation Trails and National Scenic Trails.

1969 - National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) - All federal agencies must prepare, and make public, environmental impact statements with respect to any proposed legislation or other action that would significantly affect the quality of the environment.

1969 - Endangered Species Conservation Act - Authority conferred on the secretary of the interior by the 1966 Endangered Species Act was expanded; types of wildlife under protection are defined. The secretary of the interior may promulgate a list of wildlife "threatened with worldwide extinction" and prohibit importation of any animal appearing on this list.

1969 - Water Bank Act - The secretary of agriculture was given the authority to enter into agreements with private landowners to protect wetlands in areas important to the nesting and breeding of waterfowl.


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