About the Author

  • Bob Marshall is an avid outdoorsman, conservation editor at large for Field & Stream, and the winner of two Pulizter Prizes for his work at The New Orleans Times-Picayune, where his reporting on outdoors sports and the issues that affect sportsmen have taken him across the globe.

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« Animal Poop: The New Pollution? | Main | Why Don't Sportsmen's Groups Rate Politicians on Conservation? »

October 26, 2006

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Is Richard Pombo (R-CA) the "Darth Vader of the Environment?"

It sounded like hyperbole when green groups started calling Rep. Richard “Dick” Pombo (R- CA) the “Darth Vader of the Environment.” But as they say in Texas “it ain’t braggin if you can do it”, and Pombo has shown he can – and will – do it to sportsmen and the environment at every turn.

As chair of the House Resources Committee Pombo pushed to allow road building in the Tongass National Forest, sell national parks to private industry, eliminate the moratorium on selling federal lands to mining companies, remove regulations that force energy companies to respect wetlands and wildlife values on public lands, weaken the Endangered Species Act, and rewrite the National Environmental Policy Act so industry would have a more profitable time on public lands at the expense of fish, wildlife, and sportsmen. No wonder real estate developers have paid almost $250,000 into his campaign chest over the years (Center for Responsive Politics.)

The looming election hasn’t made Pombo back off. Now he’s pushing a bill that would remove the popular 25-year ban on drilling for oil and gas off fragile coastlines. This stinks on its own, but it could also torpedo a Senate-passed drilling bill by Mary Landrieu (D-LA), that would actually help fish and wildlife. The Senate version opens new areas to drilling only in the northern Gulf, which already has lived with the industry for more than 50 years. In exchange, four coastal states would receive 37.5 percent of the royalties for habitat restoration. Louisiana urgently needs the money to help rebuild the nation’s most valuable coastal estuary, half of which has been destroyed by erosion over the last 50 years – a process largely a result of the many miles of canals dredged for oil and gas related work.

Pombo is hoping to push his agenda in a conference committee, a strategy the record shows could sorely cost fish, wildlife and sportsmen. For a full review of Pombo’s record, click here.


Ralph the Rifleman

I hope the voters read the blog...sounds like"Darth" Pombo needs to move to another planet.

Chad Love

Looks like Darth Vader has wielded his lightsaber for the last time...

c miller

I just read about the congressman and being a old time republican called his office just now. I asked the receptionist to relay my congratulations on his recent defeat at the poles. I told them that true republicans can't support his positions on conservation.

Hal Herring

I got an email plea from the Safari Club International, asking for money in a desperate bid to save Pombo's seat in Congress--SCI was saying that Pombo was their friend and best rep and that it would be a disaster if he was defeated.
Why would SCI - a hunting organization-- support somebody like this?
Does anybody know? This is a serious request for information.



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