AOC explains its position on protection of Alaska's habitats in the state departments of Fish and Game and Natural Resources
December 21, 2006 -- AOC’s number one purpose clearly stated in its bylaws is “To perpetuate the natural resource base upon which member groups activities depend;” Above all else that means first protecting Alaska’s habitats. The best answer is having both the Departments of Natural Resources (DNR) and Fish & Game (ADF&G) actively cooperating to protect these habitats.
Restoring the habitat protection function to ADFG sounds good. It may ultimately prove the best solution. But if Alaska can achieve an even better overall protection of its habitats by a blending of interagency functions, then Alaska should do that.
The original functions of the Habitat Division under ADF&G were:
Anadromous stream cataloging
What AOC would like to see is a review of Executive Order #107, which transferred some of the Title 16 functions to DNR, and the MOU between DNR and ADF&G regarding reviews of land and water activities.
After the new Commissioners of ADF&G and DNR have had the time to compare current levels of habitat protection with past records we would ask the Palin Administration to make corrections necessary to achieve habitat protection consistent with the “sustained-yield” clause enshrined in the Constitution of the State of Alaska.
AOC wants solid professional analysis on the best course of action from professionals in these state agencies. We are willing to wait for that before committing to support one course of action over another.
Here are some documents that are helpful to the understanding of this issue
Executive Order 107 in which Governor Murkowski transferred the habitat protection function from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game to the Department of Natural Resources
Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between ADF&G and ADNR to coordinate protection of fish and wildlife habitats
Criteria for OHMP Coordination with ADF&G on Resource
Development Activities, an attachment to the MOU above