A statewide coalition of environmental groups and advocates has submitted five thousand signed petitions to the National Park Service, urging the agency to do more to protect the Ozark National Scenic Riverways in Missouri. As St. Louis Public Radio's Véronique LaCapra reports, the coalition is pushing for more enforcement and a stronger management plan for the Current and Jacks Fork rivers.
The coalition says overdevelopment, overuse, and excessive vehicle traffic are taking their toll on the Ozark's Current River system. Speaking at a press conference, the director of the Missouri Chapter of the Sierra Club, John Hickey, said his group would like the National Park Service to block access to illegal roads, address E. coli contamination by restricting horseback riding…“… and number three, enforce the scenic easements in the park so that people aren't building buildings and cabins right on the river in the park.”
The National Park Service is expected to release a new draft management plan for the Ozark National Scenic Riverways by the spring of 2012.