STATEMENT BY THE PRESIDENT: "National Marine Sanctuaries Amendments Act of 2000"
                              THE WHITE HOUSE

                       Office of the Press Secretary
                          (Aboard Air Force One)


                        STATEMENT BY THE PRESIDENT

     Today I am pleased to sign the National Marine Sanctuaries Amendments
Act of 2000, further strengthening our nation?s commitment to ocean
conservation. This nation prides itself on its conservation ethic, as
embodied in our national parks and refuges. Our 13 marine sanctuaries
extend this ethic into the sea, ensuring a healthy ocean environment for
the next generation of swimmers and surfers, fishermen and explorers,
teachers and students.

     National marine sanctuaries enjoy broad bipartisan support, and I am
particularly grateful to the leadership of Senators Snowe and Kerry, and
Representatives Saxton, Faleomavaega, and Farr. I am especially pleased
that this act creates the Dr. Nancy Foster Scholarship Program, named in
memory of Dr. Foster, who passed away in June after a 23-year career
fighting for ocean conservation. It is a fitting tribute to Dr. Foster to
encourage scholarship, particularly by women and minorities, in the fields
of oceanography, marine biology, and maritime archeology.

     This legislation builds on the Clinton-Gore Administration?s work to
preserve our nation?s oceans.  Over the past seven years, the Vice
President and I have fought for healthier beaches and cleaner coastal
waters, greater protection for endangered and threatened marine species,
sound fisheries management, and support for marine protected areas. We have
worked with Congress to secure a fivefold increase in marine sanctuary
funding to $26 million, and add new sanctuaries off Massachusetts, Florida,
Washington, Hawaii, and, most recently, Michigan. Today, we extend this
program into the future, and with it our nation?s commitment to an ocean
ethic for the 21st century.


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