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With only days left before Bush takes the oval office, President Clinton has been taking action to protect some of America's natural jewels. Over the past month (and since 1996), Clinton has used several legal mechanisms, including the Antiquities Act, to protect some of America's most spectacular natural areas. Passed in 1906, the Antiquities Act gives the President the power to grant national monument status to areas possessing significant historical, scenic, and/or scientific values. Of the seventeen presidents who have served office since 1906, all have used the Antiquities Act to protect national treasures except Nixon, Reagan, and Bush. However, because of its power, the Act is controversial, and some Republicans have vowed to restrict the Act's future use. In addition to recent presidential and congressional measures, several other positive environmental actions have reached the press. This week's In The News highlights recent environmental progress and offers background resources and links to further information.
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