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Trump Administration Releases Revisions that Endanger the Endangered Species Act

EDF statement from Holly Pearen, Senior Attorney, Ecosystems


The United States Departments of Commerce and Interior unveiled regulatory reforms to the Endangered Species Act, a cornerstone environmental statute that 83% of Americans, including 74% of self-identified conservatives, support.

“On the whole, the regulatory reform package finalized by the Trump Administration does more harm than good to our nation’s wildlife. Many of the rule changes are overtly political, do nothing to enhance science-based decision-making, and undermine key incentives for proactive and collaborative conservation. Further, they would allow the agencies to deliberately ignore how plants and animals, just like people, are affected by the impacts of climate change.

“A startling report by the United Nations recently showed that human activity is putting 1 million species of plants and animals at risk of extinction. To get ahead of this problem, we urgently need flexible and innovative policies that reward collaborative conservation on private lands, where wildlife is most threatened and where we can make the biggest advances in restoring habitat.

“Unfortunately this administration’s reform package falls far short and, in the end, will only increase litigation and delay implementation of a bedrock environmental law, while doing nothing to address the catastrophic loss of biodiversity and degradation of ecosystems on which we all depend.”

Environmental Defense Fund (, a leading international nonprofit organization, creates transformational solutions to the most serious environmental problems. EDF links science, economics, law and innovative private-sector partnerships. Connect with us on TwitterFacebook and our Growing Returns blog.

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