THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release April 19, 1997
NATIONAL WILDLIFE WEEK, 1997
BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
Our Nation is blessed with a wealth of wildlife, wild places, and natural resources that enrich the lives of all Americans. Conserving our wildlife -- whether antelope or grizzly bear, salmon or serpent, or plumed bird -- is of urgent importance. Our vast system of wildlife refuges has played a vital role in this endeavor. Helping to ensure greater harmony between people and nature, more than 92 million acres of land and waters are dedicated to wildlife conservation, encompassing 500 refuges, with at least one in every State and within a short drive of most major cities. These wonderful resources provide opportunities for people of all ages and from all walks of life, and from cities, suburbs, and the rural heartland, to learn about and participate in the effort to preserve the places and wildlife that contribute so much to our Nation's heritage and natural wealth.
The appreciation and protection of wildlife, particularly of endangered or threatened species, is both the right and responsibility of all Americans. Indeed, countless individuals and private volunteer organizations across the United States have already made a significant contribution to wildlife protection. Only by engaging communities in conservation, by taking note of and rewarding community service efforts, and by maintaining diverse approaches to wildlife protection, can we preserve our wildlife today and for future generations.
We set aside this week to celebrate the role that citizens and private volunteer organizations play in engaging in service activities, and in advancing the knowledge, appreciation, and protection of wildlife and the environment. Let us also work to spread this message to broader audiences and encourage all individuals and groups to contribute to this national goal. I urge all Americans, private organizations, businesses, community leaders, elected officials and governmental agencies to do all they can to preserve and value the role of wildlife resources in our lives. This tradition of nature education will continue to teach our children how to be lifelong stewards of the environment and help to build the knowledge and understanding essential to the protection of nature's abundant gifts.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, WILLIAM J. CLINTON, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim April 20 through April 26, 1997, as National Wildlife Week. I ask all Americans to find ways to promote the conservation and protection of our wildlife and wild places.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this nineteenth day of April, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and ninety-seven, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and twenty-first.
WILLIAM J. CLINTON
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