Monday, August 19, 2019

Endangered Species Act - ENDANGERED!

Endangered Species Act Now Endangered


by Mel Edie


In 1973, the United States introduced the Endangered Species Act. This incredibly important legislation has served to conserve hundreds of threatened and endangered species as well as their habitats. Among the requirements to ensure successful protection include federal agencies working with environmental government services and the prohibition of "taking" (importing, exporting, etc) any of the listed species. To date, the Act protects over 1,600 domestic plant and animal species and has been 99% successful. However, under the Trump Administration, the strongest law protecting our biodiversity may itself be in danger. 

                        
1- Bald Eagle is one of the species negatively impacted by these policy changes.

To read more about the Endangered Species Act, follow this link:  https://www.fws.gov/endangered/laws-policies/

            This week, President Trump and the U.S. Department of Interior announced plans for significant cuts to the application of the Endangered Species Act. Not only does the public strongly support the law, but so do lawmakers on both sides of the political spectrum, so changes have been slow or altogether impossible. Until now. The President has proposed modifications to the bill that would open previously preserved lands to mining, oil and coal drilling, and urbanization. Additionally, if companies believe that they will lose revenue because due to the restriction of using protected habitat, endangered species may be removed to allow businesses to move in. 

2- Rates of deforestation will increase as businesses move into protected areas.
                        
The list of catastrophic changes goes on, and you can read more about them here: https://arstechnica.com/science/2019/08/whats-changing-about-endangered-species-act-enforcement-and-what-it-means/


            
3- Polar bears are the verge of becoming extinct if these policy changes are implemented.

Hopefully, these changes can be delayed from taking off. To help, write letters supporting the Endangered Species Act to your local politicians! Don’t support businesses who disregard wildlife by selling wildlife products or destroying their habitat! What every individual does to fight these bill changes does matter! 

Encourage your friends and family to do the same. Each one of us can make a huge impact. And, as always, be aware of your personal impact on the environment around you and globally. Fight to keep the Endangered Species Act strong to conserve all the listed species and to support increased biodiversity on our Mother Earth.


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