Court Victory for the Neches River

March 16th, 2009

From a press release from the Texas Conservation Alliance on Thursday:

The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals Thursday affirmed the July 2008 decision by Judge Jorge A. Solis in favor of the Neches River National Wildlife Refuge. The City of Dallas and the Texas Water Development Board had filed suit hoping to overturn creation of the Neches River National Wildlife Refuge and make way for a reservoir Dallas predicts might be needed in fifty years. Instead, Judge Solis upheld the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s 2006 creation of the refuge.

“This is wonderful news!” said Janice Bezanson, executive director of Texas Conservation Alliance. “The Neches River Refuge is exceptional wildlife habitat – one of the most important wildlife areas left in Texas. Thousands of Texans wrote letters or signed petitions in support of its creation.”

Echoing Janet’s quote, above, TLCV Executive Director James Canup said today, “Assuring adequate clean water resources for Texas cities and Texas wildlife is one of the most important challenges facing our state. This ruling from the 5th Circuit is the right decision and it sends the right message: before we build more lakes and reservoirs that destroy habitat and take private land, we should make sure we’re doing all we can to conserve existing water resources.”

“Thanks to the Court’s ruling, Texas kids for generations to come will be able to enjoy a natural, scenic Neches River,” he added.