Debating the Endangered Species Act Without Discussing Dedicated Conservation Funding Insufficient to Addressing America’s Wildlife Crisis
Washington, DC — As House lawmakers gather to debate a series of bills to rewrite the Endangered Species Act, the National Wildlife Federation pressed lawmakers to have a more comprehensive conversation around how best to save the 12,000 at-risk species by providing dedicated funding for proactive, collaborative conservation efforts and focusing efforts on reforms that will accelerate specie recovery.
“America’s wildlife are in crisis — with more than one-third of all species at-risk or vulnerable to potential extinction in the decades ahead — and the Endangered Species Act is essential to bringing species back from the brink. Any changes to the Endangered Species Act should focus on accelerating the recovery of species through greater collaboration, not inadvertently worsening the outlook for wildlife facing extinction, as would likely occur by several of the bills before the committee,” said Collin O’Mara, president and CEO of the National Wildlife Federation. “We urge the committee to focus its attention on addressing the chronic under-investment in proactive, collaborative, on-the-ground wildlife conservation efforts and strengthening the Endangered Species Act to improve its ability to help wildlife populations recover.”
The National Wildlife Federation is working at the forefront of U.S. wildlife conservation policy and efforts to restore wildlife populations across the United States. The Federation worked with U.S. Representatives Jeff Fortenberry, R-Neb., and Debbie Dingell, D-Mich., to introduce the bipartisan Recovering America’s Wildlife Act earlier this session of Congress.
The Recovering America’s Wildlife Act would redirect $1.3 billion of existing revenue annually to the congressionally-mandated State Wildlife Action Plans. This legislation follows the recommendation of a diverse group of energy, business and conservation leaders, the Blue Ribbon Panel on Sustaining America’s Diverse Fish and Wildlife Resources. The bipartisan bill would address the needs of thousands of species, preventing them from needing to be added to the Endangered Species Act and accelerating the recovery of species listed as threatened or endangered.
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More than one-third of U.S. fish and wildlife species are at risk of extinction in the coming decades. We're on the ground in seven regions across the country, collaborating with 53 state and territory affiliates to reverse the crisis and ensure wildlife thrive.