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OP-ED: BIDEN’S ENDANGERED SPECIES REGS ARE WREAKING HAVOC IN THE WEST


by Senators Cynthia Lummis, Dan Sullivan and Pete Ricketts as it appeared on Agri-Pulse

Last year, the Biden administration began the process of unrolling Trump-era Endangered Species Act reforms and using the law as a Trojan horse for its restrictive policies that drastically limit landowners and erode our way of life.

The purpose of the ESA is to recover endangered and threatened species and protect their habitats. However, in the time since this administration began its Green New Deal-driven ESA campaign, only 2% of species have been recovered. Despite this embarrassingly low recovery rate, the Biden administration has weaponized the ESA, causing significant economic harm in many of our rural communities.

The only thing the Biden administration's implementation of ESA does is hinder landowners, ranchers, and our permitting process for critical infrastructure projects. It may score political points with environmental extremists, but it hurts hard-working Americans in states like ours.

The Trump administration recognized the value in partnering with, not punishing, landowners to restore endangered species. They opted to implement commonsense reforms to the ESA that ensured a critical habitat designation didn't paralyze landowners.

President Trump realized part of creating a more workable ESA included eliminating the "blanket rule" under Section 4(d) that automatically provides endangered level protections to species listed only as threatened and instead required threatened species to be managed with tailored plans.

It also allowed the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to research and share the economic impacts of a listing determination under the ESA and provided flexibility in defining a critical habitat rather than completely ignoring the economic consequences communities must contend with.

To read the entire op-ed click here.


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