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Demand a National Biodiversity Strategy

Delivery to President Biden

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What’s At Stake

We are living through a mass extinction of humanity’s making. Just recently, the U.S. government declared 23 more species extinct, and in the coming decades, thousands more species could disappear forever due to climate change and habitat loss. This extinction crisis means fewer pollinators for agriculture, depleted fisheries, and disappearing places like old growth forests that provide a long-term, low-cost source of clean air and water.

At the same time, we are witnessing a global mobilization to address the climate and biodiversity crisis. For example, President Biden has committed the United States to protect 30% of U.S. lands and waters by 2030.

Urge the Biden administration to follow through on this commitment and to establish a National Biodiversity Strategy to comprehensively address this crisis.

We need to ensure that we implement every initiative to expand the safety net for life on this planet. A National Biodiversity Strategy, coupled with the 30x30 commitment to protect habitat, would set us on a path toward global leadership in the fight to save the nearly one million species threatened by extinction in this century. For example, the Biden administration must restore, fully fund, and enforce the Endangered Species Act, which has been 99% effective in keeping plants and animals under its care from going extinct. The Act has given Earthjustice a critical means of going to court to force government agencies to protect habitat and stop human activities harming the most at-risk species. There are few other laws with as strong a mandate as the Endangered Species Act — which is why it is critical we protect it.

We can’t delay. This year represents an enormous opportunity to set new goals for addressing the biodiversity crisis, and a national strategy is needed. Earthjustice’s attorneys are among the best, but we can’t rest our hopes on litigation alone ⁠— we need you to contact the Biden administration and add your voice to those speaking up for wildlife and wild places.

Southern resident orca J16 makes rainbows while surfacing in Puget Sound.
Miles Ritter / CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Southern resident orca J16 makes rainbows while surfacing in Puget Sound. The southern resident orca population is protected under the Endangered Species Act.

Your Actions Matter

Your messages make a difference, even if we have leaders who don't want to listen. Here's why.

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You level the playing field.

Elected officials pay attention when they see that we are paying attention.

They may be hearing from industry lobbyists left and right, but hearing the stories of their constituents — that’s your power.

Our legislators serve at the pleasure of the people who gave them their job — you. When you contact your elected official, you’re putting a face and a name on an issue. Whether or not you voted for them, they work for you, for the duration of their term.

Make sure your elected officials know whose community and whose values they represent. (Find your local, state, and federal elected officials.)

Your action is with us in court.

If a federal agency finalizes a harmful action, the record of public comments provides a basis for bringing them into court.

Throughout each of the public comment periods we alert you to, Earthjustice’s attorneys are researching and writing in-depth, technical comments to submit — detailing how the regulation could and should be stronger to protect the environment, our communities, and our planet.

We need you to join us — your specific experiences, knowledge, and voice are crucial to add to the Administrative Record through the comment periods.

Lawsuits we file that challenge weak or harmful federal regulations rely on what was submitted during the comment period. The court can only look at documents that are in the Administrative Record — including the public comments — to decide if the agency did something improper.

Your actions aid our litigation. Taking action and submitting comments during a comment period is substantively important.

It’s the law.

Federal agencies must pause what they’re doing and ask for — and consider — your comment.

Many of us may have never heard of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), but laws like these require our government to ask the public to weigh in before agencies adopt or change regulations.

Regulations essentially describe how federal agencies will carry out laws — including decisions that could undermine science, or weaken safeguards on public health.

Public comments are collected at various points throughout the federal government’s rulemaking process, including when a regulation is proposed and finalized. (Learn more about the rulemaking process.) These comments become part of the official, legal public record — the “Administrative Record.”

When the public responds with a huge outpouring of support for environmental protections, these individual messages collectively undercut politicians' attempts to claim otherwise.

What this means is each of us can take a role in shaping the rules our government creates — and ensuring those rules are fair and effective.