Congress Wants to Gut Conservation...Again

Here's a shocker.  The US House of Representatives Committee on Appropriations released a proposed budget for the Department of Interior that would halt new endangered species listings and gut the US Fish and Wildlife Service budget by 21%.   The National Park Service would also see a cut of 129 million dollars from last year's budget.

Bottom line: The spending bill would weaken most functions of the government that prevent the extinction of America's natural heritage and destruction of the public's land, while opening the gates to special interests that want to ravage wildlands for private profit. 

Here is the provision from page 8 of the draft bill that would bring the Endangered Species Act to a halt, preventing any funds from being used to add new plants or wildlife to the list. 
That none of the funds shall be used for implementing subsections (a), (b), (c), and (e) of section 4 of the Endangered Species Act...
The bill's sponsors proudly note that they rejected a proposal to raise fees on oil and gas companies extracting resources from the land.   Nevermind that those companies are ending each year with billions of dollars in surplus.  The bill would also overturn a ban on uranium mining near the Grand Canyon, which mostly affects foreign companies shipping the product overseas.

This is not a sustainable proposal.  If we cannot balance demands on natural resources with conservation, we end up with a classic Tragedy of the Commons.

Hopefully our elected "representatives" show some Pride in America and come back with a more sensible proposal.

If you want to give them a nudge, look up your Representative (here) and give them a call or email.


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