Fax to Congress

Osha Gray Davidson osha at pobox.com
Tue Oct 26 14:48:06 EDT 1999

Dear List-members,

As per John Ogden's recent message, and by way of example (for what it's 
worth), here is the message I just sent to each of the following individuals:

Congressman Harold Rogers (Fax: 202-225-0940)
Congressman Jose Serano (Fax: 202-225-6001)
Congressman Bill Young (Fax: 202-225-9764)
Senator Judd Gregg (Fax: 202-224-4952)
Senator Fritz Hollings (Fax: 202-224-4293)

I haven't yet been able to get through to OMB director Jack Lew at 
202-395-3888. Anyone know if there's another number?

I encourage each of you to contact these people ASAP.
Dear Senator Hollings,

I’m writing in strong support of funding for coral reef initiatives in the 
Commerce Department funding bill. These biological treasures need and 
deserve full funding as requested by NOAA and the Administration. I’m not a 
marine biologist, but I’ve been diving around reefs long enough to know 
their incalculable value–and, unfortunately, to know the many threats that 
may spell their destruction.

Since I’m not a scientist, a brief word about my background is probably in 
order. As a science writer, I spent over a year traveling to reefs around 
the world, diving on them, interviewing scientists who are studying them, 
and talking with local people whose livelihoods depend upon coral reefs. 
The resulting book, "The Enchanted Braid: Coming to Terms with Nature on 
the Coral Reef," was a finalist for the BP Natural World Book Prize, a 
Discovery Channel Editor’s Choice, and is being made into a documentary by 
a Hong Kong -based company.

You’ve probably heard coral reefs called the “rainforests of the sea.” I 
believe that understates the importance of reefs. They are far more 
biodiverse at higher levels of taxa than are rainforests, and they play a 
tremendously important role in maintaining the integrity and life of the 
sea. Now–when coral reefs are experiencing unprecedented losses, and when 
scientists are just beginning to decipher the extraordinary secrets of this 
important ecosystem–is not the time to withdraw or seriously diminish 
funding for reef projects. If anything, this is the precisely the time to 
increase such funding.

Thank you for your attention in this important matter.

Osha Gray Davidson

Osha Gray Davidson
Adjunct Assistant Professor
International Programs, University of Iowa

14 S. Governor St.
Iowa City, IA 52240
Phone: 319-338-4778

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