Earthjustice Blasts Attacks on Endangered Species Act in ‘America’s Wildlife Habitat Conservation Act’

New legislation would weaken the ESA while gutting species conservation programs


Geoffrey Nolan,

Today, the House Natural Resources Committee will hold a legislative hearing on Rep. Bruce Westerman’s America’s Wildlife Habitat Conservation Act. The bill represents a stark contrast from previous bipartisan conservation efforts like the Recovering America’s Wildlife Act and would instead cut funding for habitat conservation efforts while weakening the Endangered Species Act. In anticipation of the hearing, Earthjustice Legislative Director of the Lands, Wildlife, and Ocean Program Addie Haughey issued the following statement:

“The America’s Wildlife Habitat Conservation Act is a partisan exercise that undercuts the bipartisan effort behind the Recovering America’s Wildlife Act, guts key funding for habitat passed in the Inflation Reduction Act, and weakens protections for threatened and endangered species. Instead of pursuing a bipartisan bill to provide much needed resources for wildlife, House Republicans are using this bill to ram through toxic policy proposals that have no place in this legislation.

“The so-called habitat funding in this bill ignores the needs of tribes, and could be used for activities that destroy habitat, like ecologically harmful logging. Changes to the ESA would disregard science, undercut recovery for listed species, and threaten key habitats like mature and old growth forests. We urge House Natural Resources Committee members to reject this partisan bill and instead work on providing federal agencies, states, and Tribal governments with the tools and resources they need to protect biodiversity.”

Numerous conservation groups have expressed their opposition to the bill including:

Pelicans flying against a blue and pink sky over a marsh.
Pelicans flying home to roost over salt marsh at Hunting Island State Park in South Carolina near Beaufort. (Teresa Kopec / Getty Images)

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