Jan 6, 2009 | 7
The environmental legacy of the Bush administration is a matter of some dispute but by designating three more marine monuments in the Pacific today, George W. Bush has entered the annals of history as the protector of 335,000 square miles of ocean. In fact, environmentalists and Bush himself likened the action to President Theodore Roosevelt's creation of the national parks more than a century ago.
"President Roosevelt left office with many achievements and the most enduring of all was his commitment to conservation. As he once said: 'Of all the questions which can come before the nation, short of the actual preservation of its existence in a great war, there is none which compares in importance with leaving this land even a better land for our descendants than it is for us,'" Bush said today at the signing ceremony. "That spirit has guided the conservation movement for a century; it's guided my administration. Since 2001, we have put common-sense policies in place, and I can say upon departure, our air is cleaner, our water is purer, and our lands are better protected."
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