Environmental Protection Agency Denies Petition Aimed at Anglers
Frye, Bob, Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
Anglers can keep their lead sinkers and jigs after all.
The Environmental Protection Agency recently denied a petition by the Center for Biological Diversity to use the Toxic Substances Control Act to regulate the use of lead in fishing gear.
In a letter to the Center earlier this month, the EPA said, after careful review:
"While the petition does provide evidence of exposure and a risk to waterfowl in some areas of the United States, it does not provide a basis for finding that the risk presented is an unreasonable risk for which federal action ... is necessary.
"Your petition does not demonstrate why federal action is necessary given the mix of regulatory and education actions state agencies and the Federal Government already are taking to address the impact of lead fishing tackle on local environments."
The Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation, American Sportfishing Association and other groups applauded the decision, saying there is no science that supports a lead ban.
The Foundation wrote that "such a restriction is not biologically justified as no studies have shown that fishing tackle is impacting loon or other waterfowl populations."
"Sportsmen and wildlife won a big battle. Though we doubt the Center for Biological Diversity will stop this ideological attack on fishing, the EPA has decided against an unscientific restriction of lead fishing tackle," said Jeff Crane, president of the Sportsmen's Foundation.
Pennsylvania was the first state to adopt a mentored youth hunting program. Numerous states have since passed Pennsylvania and adopted even broader mentored programs that open hunting not only to children, but also adults.
Two more states may soon join that list.
The West Virginia and New Jersey legislatures have introduced bills that would allow adults as well as children to hunt as "apprentices," under the guidance of experienced sportsmen, without first having to take a hunter safety course. …