PINEDALE – A Congressional working group examining the Endangered Species Act (ESA) released its final report and recommendations last week. The group seeks to update the act while focusing on both recovering listed species and, through conservation and habitat management, reducing the need for species to be listed in the first place. Conservation groups, however, find the results troubling.
“The report is the culmination of the working group’s eight-month effort to examine the ESA from a variety of viewpoints and angles, receive input on how the ESA is working and being implemented and how and whether it could be updated to be more effective for people and species,” a release states.
Wyoming Rep. Cynthia Lummis, who began working on ESA issues in the 1990s when she was a board member for the University of Wyoming’s Institute for Environment and Natural Resources, was one the congressional group’s leaders.
While the report itself is not legislation, Lummis hopes small bills will be drafted to address points identified by the group – rather than a large comprehensive bill.
“The current act is good, it just needs updating,” she said. “The general philosophy, which was adopted in 1973, is still valid and good today. The problem is how it was morphed in implementation over the years.”
For the complete article see the 02-11-2014 issue.
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