Bush Administration Moves to Weaken Pesticide Regulation

Endangered species experts excluded from oversight


Patti Goldman, Earthjustice (206) 343-7340 ext. 32
William Lutz, Defenders of Wildlife (202) 772-0269

A Bush administration proposal could put endangered species such as sea turtles and salmon at greater risk by allowing the Environmental Protection Agency to approve pesticide use without consulting with wildlife experts. Current rules require the EPA to consult with federal fish and wildlife agencies to assess the effects of new pesticide use on endangered wildlife. The new regulations eliminate that requirement, leaving endangered species impact assessments up to the EPA, an agency with a history of failing to protect species from the harmful effects of pesticides.

“Pollution and pesticides are among the greatest threats to wildlife and habitat,” said Patti Goldman, managing attorney of Earthjustice’s Seattle office. “The Bush administration’s policy weakens long-standing regulations that protect species and will lead to more harmful chemicals in our environment.”

“The President’s policy benefits the chemical industry at the expense of the environment,” said Defenders of Wildlife President Rodger Schlickeisen. “It is another example of Americans paying the price as the President bows to the wishes of industry.”

“EPA has repeatedly demonstrated its unwillingness to adequately consult with wildlife experts when assessing the impact of chemical use on wildlife and habitat. In fact, EPA did not conduct a single investigation into the effects of pesticides on endangered species for more than a decade and only started when federal courts ordered them to do so. The President’s proposed regulation only serves to let EPA off the hook while further endangering hundreds of species and their habitat,” added Schlickeisen.


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