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Endangered Species Act: Trump administration overhauls protections of endangered species

Endangered Species Act: Trump administration overhauls protections of endangered species

The changes primarily alter two of the main sections of the ESA: Section 4, which deals in large part with adding species to or removing species from the act's protection; and Section 7, which covers consultations with other federal agencies. Trump rejects mainstream climate science.

He said the group would go to court to block the rewritten regulations, "which only serves the oil industry and other polluters who see endangered species as pesky inconveniences".

Price tag or no, Frazer said, federal officials would keep selecting and rejecting creatures from the endangered species list as Congress required, "solely on the basis of the best available scientific information and without consideration for the economic impacts".

The regulatory revisions, according to the department, "clarify that the standards for delisting and reclassification of a species consider the same five statutory factors as the listing of a species in the first place".

The changes will apply only to future listing decisions.

"Instead of undercutting the Endangered Species Act and other bedrock environmental laws, we should be strengthening these laws to improve their effectiveness for people and wildlife", said Jamie Rappaport Clark, president and CEO of Defenders of Wildlife. Such considerations had been prohibited since the law was passed, in 1973; instead, determinations had to be made based exclusively on science. With logging and other human activities and predators driving down the numbers of the south Selkirk caribou, Canadian officials captured and penned the last surviving members of the species over the winter and pinned them up for their protection.

MA and California will lead a multi-state lawsuit joined by conservation groups once the final rule is published in the Federal Register in the coming weeks, challenging what they say was an "illegal" process to revise it. This is detrimental for species that are strongly affected by climate change such as the American pika.

"They're going to tighten up the definition of foreseeable future, and make it something that can be predicted and has a known probability of being a threat to the species in a relatively short period of time", Scott said.

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The new rules will also prohibit designation of critical habitat for species threatened by climate change, the Center for Biological Diversity said.

Hopefully the American pika will move up in elevation where temperatures are cooler.

Now regulators can designate areas of a species' historical range or suitable but unoccupied areas as critical habitat.

"For far too long, the Act has been weaponized to stop the production of food, fuel and fiber that Americans need every day while turning a blind eye to how red tape actually inhibits the recovery of species", Sgamma said.

Under the new rule, it is hard to imagine the continued existence of species expected to be strongly affected by climate change. Both are proposed for threatened status, and if approved, both would be subject to the new rules.

Eliminate a rule extending the ESA's prohibition on "take" to threatened species. His "Extinction Countdown" column has run continuously since 2004 and has covered news and science related to more than 1,000 endangered species. We depend on biodiversity, many times unknowingly. "According to the Center for Biological Diversity", she wrote, "there have been at least 419 "legislative attacks" - that is, actions meant to weaken federal protection of endangered species - against the Endangered Species Act since 1996, 116 of which occurred during the current 115th Congress". The Senate voted 92-0 in favor of the bill, and the House voted in favor of the Senate's version of the bill 390-12.

The ESA is the major tool for saving wildlife from extinction in the United States.