Now is the time to preserve the Endangered Species Act, not dilute it

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is considering removing ESA protections for the Yellowstone grizzlies in Wyoming, Montana and Idaho. But some scientists warn against it, saying climate change has devastated the white bark pine trees that provide a key food source for the bears.Yesterday, a working group of 13 House Republicans released a report calling for extensive dismantling of the US Endangered Species Act (ESA).

The decades-long offensive on the ESA has been historically mounted by certain members of Congress who consider the Act a threat to the private industries including petroleum, timber, livestock, private land ownership, and other land use practices. 

This is new attack is led by Rep. Cynthia Lummis of Wyoming and Rep. Doc Hastings of Washington state and House Natural Resources Committee Chair.

The report calls for an end to several aspects of the ESA, including federal oversight and litigation from wildlife advocates, and also proposes to limit funding for implementation.

Our reading of the political landscape indicates that this latest attack is not going to go far, however IFAW’s US Office will continue to keep watch and be ready to defend the ESA.

As a member of the Endangered Species Coalition, IFAW recently celebrated the ESA’s 40th anniversary by co-hosting a reception of more than 300 wildlife conservation advocates at the Library of Congress.

At the event, a beautiful book, A Wild Success: The Endangered Species Act at 40, was released, featuring an essay from IFAW CEO Azzedine Downes that summed things up perfectly: Now is the time to preserve – not dilute – the ESA.”

Make sure to let your members of Congress know the ESA has your support. 


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Azzedine Downes,IFAW President and CEO
President and Chief Executive Officer
Céline Sissler-Bienvenu, Director, France and Francophone Africa
Director, France and Francophone Africa
Dr. Elsayed Ahmed Mohamed, Regional Director, Middle East and North Africa
Regional Director, Middle East and North Africa
Dr. Maria (Masha) N. Vorontsova, Senior Advisor to the IFAW Marine Conservation
Senior Advisor to the IFAW Marine Conservation Program
Faye Cuevas, Esq.
Senior Vice President
Grace Ge Gabriel, Regional Director, Asia
Regional Director, Asia
Executive Vice President
Executive Vice President
Matt Collis, Director, International Policy
Director, International Policy
Pauline Verheij, Program Manager, Wildlife Crime
Program Manager, Wildlife Crime
Rikkert Reijnen, Program Director, Wildlife Crime
Program Director, Wildlife Crime
Country Representative, Germany
Country Representative, Germany
Staci McLennan, Director, EU Office
Director, EU Office
Tania McCrea-Steele, Project Lead, Global Wildlife Cybercrime
Project Lead, Global Wildlife Cybercrime
Vivek Menon, Director of IFAW partner, Wildlife Trust of India
Consulting Senior Advisor to the CEO on Strategic Partnerships & Philanthropy