Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill Provides for Orphaned Wells Cleanup, Wildlife Crossings

DENVER — The bipartisan Infrastructure and Jobs Act signed into law by President Joe Biden contains significant investments for the cleanup of orphaned oil and gas wells and the construction of wildlife crossings, which will benefit wildlife and humans alike.

“We applaud President Biden and the bipartisan members of Congress who worked diligently to get this important legislation enacted into law. Investing in the cleanup of orphaned oil and gas wells will restore wildlife habitat, ensure clean air and drinking water for surrounding communities, and help reduce harmful methane emissions,” said David Willms, senior director for Western wildlife and conservation at the National Wildlife Federation. “This historic investment to cap orphan oil and gas wells and reclaim the land around them will ensure that future generations of Americans will be able to safely enjoy hiking, hunting, fishing and other outdoor pursuits on our public lands.”

“This bipartisan legislation includes the largest federal investment in wildlife crossings in our nation’s history, and provides critical resources for other programs like the Forest Service Legacy Roads and Trail Remediation Program to help support healthy habitats and connectivity for fish and wildlife on public lands and water,” said Mike Leahy, director of wildlife and hunting and fishing policy at the National Wildlife Federation. “We are grateful to the members of Congress and the Biden Administration who worked with hunters, anglers, conservationists and state wildlife and transportation agencies to get this bill across the finish line. The construction of wildlife crossings will reduce wildlife-vehicle collisions and is a key conservation strategy to help wildlife survive impacts from climate change and development."

The Infrastructure and Jobs Act invests $4 billion to clean up hundreds of thousands of orphaned oil and gas wells that leak methane and other toxins, and pose serious health risks to both wildlife and local communities. The wildlife crossings program authorized in the law is the first federal program dedicated entirely to supporting the development of wildlife crossings across the nation.


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