Trump Administration Guts Endangered Species Act

livescience.com | 8/12/2019 | Rafi Letzter
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Back in May, the United Nations warned that 1 million species are at risk of extinction, and that time is running out to save them — posing a severe risk to human life. Now, the Trump administration has significantly weakened the Endangered Species Act, a bipartisan 1973 law designed to prevent the most threatened species from going extinct.

The Endangered Species Act bans harassing, hurting or capturing species deemed endangered, and it requires agencies to enact rules designed to protect their ecosystems. Its goal, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), is to help species recover to the point that they no longer need federal protection. The most famous species that ecologists credit the FWS with preserving is likely the bald eagle. There were just a few hundred breeding pairs left in the U.S. in the 1970s, according to the American Bird Conservancy. Now, there are thousands.

Revisions - Fit - President - Mandate - Burden

"The revisions finalized with this rulemaking fit squarely within the President's mandate of easing the regulatory burden on the American public, without sacrificing our species' protection and recovery goals," Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross, an investor worth hundreds of millions of dollars, said in a statement.

The first key change to the act, according to The New York Times, involved requiring regulators to take economic costs into account when making decisions related to protecting species from extinction. The law previously required regulators to rely entirely on science in their decision-making.

Key - Change

The second key change has...
(Excerpt) Read more at: livescience.com
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