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Elly Pepper, Legislative Advocate, Washington, DC

Elly Pepper
Growing up on Maine’s Mount Desert Island, home of Acadia National Park, I spent most of my childhood investigating tide pools and sailing/island exploring with my parents and two younger brothers. I always felt so much better when I was outside -- a fact that became even clearer to me when I spent 2 months hiking the Appalachian Trail in high school. While my parents were appalled that I had worn the same t-shirt for the entire trip, and immediately threw it away upon my return, I loved the simplicity of life on the trail and the feeling of carrying everything I needed on my back. I entered college and, later, law school, with the intention of working in environmental policy. As such, I feel very lucky to advocate on behalf of our environment at NRDC.

Recent Posts

Don't Be Fooled: Rep. Hastings & Friends DON'T Care About the Fish & Wildlife Service

Posted April 8, 2014 by Elly Pepper in Saving Wildlife and WIld Places, U.S. Law and Policy

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They’re a tricky bunch, that’s for sure. As I watched today’s bogus House Natural Resources Committee hearing, led by Rep. Hastings (R-WA), I was stunned by the feigned sympathy he and his cohorts displayed for the Fish and Wildlife Service....continued

January/February/March 2014 Legislative Threats to the Endangered Species Act

Posted March 31, 2014 by Elly Pepper in Saving Wildlife and WIld Places, U.S. Law and Policy

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It may be a new year, but House Republicans seem bent on the same old resolutions including weakening the Endangered Species Act, all under the pretext of “improving it.” On February 4, the House’s “ESA Working Group,” which includes some...continued

The Right Way to Protect Elephants

Posted March 27, 2014 by Elly Pepper in Saving Wildlife and WIld Places, U.S. Law and Policy

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A few weeks ago, I read a fascinating study that elephants can determine a bunch of things including human gender, age, and even ethnicity from our voices. So I’m pretty sure they could have discerned my sadness as I read...continued

Administration Wants More Money for Wildlife Services But Still Won't Tell Us Where It Goes

Posted March 11, 2014 by Elly Pepper

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Accountability is typically critical to getting more money.  When you ask for allowance as a kid, your parents want to know what chores you'll do. When you ask for a raise, your boss wants to know what you've done. When...continued

New York Bill Would Ban Elephant & Mammoth Ivory Sales!

Posted February 21, 2014 by Elly Pepper in Saving Wildlife and WIld Places

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11,300. That's how many ivory items the last survey, conducted in 2008, found in New York City, making it, by far, the largest ivory market of any major U.S. city.  How many elephants were slaughtered for those items? It's difficult...continued

U.S. Limits Ivory Sales!

Posted February 11, 2014 by Elly Pepper in Saving Wildlife and WIld Places, U.S. Law and Policy

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The elephant poaching crises reached its peak last year with about 30,000 of these amazing species slaughtered for their tusks. Seizure data collected for 2014 so far shows that this year could be even worse.­­ But the U.S. is...continued

NRDC Asks New York to Restrict its Ivory Trade

Posted January 16, 2014 by Elly Pepper in Saving Wildlife and WIld Places, U.S. Law and Policy

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Seventy-two percent of elephants have been lost. An unprecedented amount of poaching is occurring in Africa. And preliminary indicators suggest that 2013 may have seen the highest levels of illicit ivory trade ever. Yet, despite the fact that elephants...continued

Polar Bear Countries Make Some Strides, But More Must Be Done!

Posted December 6, 2013 by Elly Pepper

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Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE The Polar Bear range states this week in Moscow during the meeting on the 1973 Polar Bear Agreement in Moscow made some important steps towards enhancing polar bear conservation. But with...continued

International Forum on Conservation of Polar Bears Must Address Climate Change and Unsustainable Trade

Posted December 3, 2013 by Elly Pepper in Saving Wildlife and WIld Places

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Carbon dioxide concentrations reached 400ppm this year, following a record-low Arctic sea-ice extent in 2012. At the same time, demand for polar bear parts has continued to skyrocket with the maximum hide price almost doubling from $12,514 to $22,000 since...continued

November 2013 Legislative Threats to the Endangered Species Act

Posted November 25, 2013 by Elly Pepper in Saving Wildlife and WIld Places, U.S. Law and Policy

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This month, Congress was very busy, apparently trying to get things done before the holidays, following which the budget battle will consume Hill activity for who knows how long. In the crazy bill introduction category, Sens. Paul (R-KY), Lee (R-UT)...continued

Fish & Wildlife Service Crushes Illegal Wildlife Trade

Posted November 15, 2013 by Elly Pepper in Saving Wildlife and WIld Places

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Who would want to live in a world without elephants? That’s the question I asked myself as I watched the Fish and Wildlife Service pulverize 6 tons of ivory jewelry, canes, decorative objects, and the like yesterday at Denver’s Rocky...continued

October 2013 Legislative Threats to the Endangered Species Act

Posted November 1, 2013 by Elly Pepper in Saving Wildlife and WIld Places, U.S. Law and Policy

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The first half of the month of October was largely consumed by the shutdown, which, at least initially, brought all other activity to a stop on Capitol Hill. However, a small group of Republicans calling themselves the “ESA Congressional Working...continued

Fish & Wildlife Service Proposes Endangered Species Act Protections for Red Knots!

Posted October 7, 2013 by Elly Pepper

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What bird travels approximately 18,000 miles each year on a 20-inch wingspan stopping only a few times to eat? The Red Knot! After traveling to Quebec’s Mingan Archipelago to tag these remarkable birds just a few weeks ago, I recently...continued

September 2013 Legislative Threats to the Endangered Species Act

Posted October 1, 2013 by Elly Pepper in Saving Wildlife and WIld Places, U.S. Law and Policy

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With much of this month’s focus on whether and how to fund the government, there wasn’t a whole lot going on in Congress regarding endangered species. However, Sen. Cornyn (R-TX) did file an amendment to the Shaheen-Portman energy efficiency bill...continued

Representatives, Groups Encourage Audit of Wildlife Services

Posted September 24, 2013 by Elly Pepper in Saving Wildlife and WIld Places, U.S. Law and Policy

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Last week, Representatives DeFazio (D-OR), Campbell (R-CA), and Peters (D-CA) sent a letter to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s internal watchdog, its Office of Inspector General (OIG), asking them to prioritize a planned audit of Wildlife Services’ predator control program...continued

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Switchboard is the staff blog of the Natural Resources Defense Council, the nation’s most effective environmental group. For more about our work, including in-depth policy documents, action alerts and ways you can contribute, visit NRDC.org.

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