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Ian Somerhalder to Congress: U.S. Must Take Lead in Conservation

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Ian Somerhalder, everyone’s favorite vampire (move over Rob Pattinson), has a busy day planned. Late last night he tweeted, “Just getting home from work. Nap, put suit on, mad dash to DC, testify b4 congress@10am, lunch w/ a few senators them back on plane to Atl…Whoa.”

So far his to-do list is on track. This morning, along with several other environmentalists, he implored Congress to help fund species conservation. He was speaking in particular about H.R. 50, the Multinational Species Conservation Funds Reauthorization Act of 2011, which would reauthorize several conservation acts from the 1990s.

The actor-activist spoke about the protection of numerous species, including tigers, rhinoceroses, elephants, marine turtles and great apes.

He focused on the United States’ role in protecting these species. “Looking around the world at these wildlife, it’s abundantly clear that humans have benefited from nature in so many ways but have also brought many species to the brink of extinction…The American people that I interact with through my IS Foundation work do not want to allow this to happen; they do not want to let these species go without a fight; and they see the way in which nature provides for people around the world. This is an issue that Americans care deeply about, and it is critical that the United States, as a world leader and global power, continue to lead the planet’s efforts in global species conservation.”

He also called on his fans to support the reauthorization of conservation funds, asking them to send a message to Congress in support of the bill and urge representatives to take action immediately. Somerhalder’s support of H.R. 50 is the latest in a growing list of environmental campaigns with which he is involved.

For more information on this morning’s hearing, click here.

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