Endangered species act

The 1973 Endangered Species Act (ESA) was enacted by Congress to prevent the extinction of threatened and endangered species of fish, plants and wildlife. The Act defines an endangered species as a plant or animal species that is on the verge of extinction. Threatened species include all species which are endangered - but have a better population growth. Threatened species outnumber endangered species. Poaching, killing, hunting, overharvesting or destroying their natural habitats are the most common reasons for a species to be endangered. Indisputably, the protections of the Endangered Species Act are strong. The ESA is used to determine the minimum flow-rate for rivers, the approval of pesticide use, and evaluating the environmental effects of proposed developments. Once a species is listed as endangered, taking its life or destroying its habitat becomes illegal. This listing often results in the loss of land for use or development.

Critics of the ESA listing and delisting process include oil, timber and mining interests, real estate developers and some farmers. They often disagree with the protection of what they consider are insignificant populations of species at the expense of land ownership rights.
ESA proponents claim successful habitat preservation and species-recovery programs have led to the recovery of many endangered species including the Bald Eagle, Brown Pelican, American Alligator, Gray Whale and the American and Arctic Peregrine Falcons.

Proposed Legislation: H.R.4348 - PAW and FIN Conservation Act of 2019
Prospective Sponsor: Rep. Raul Grijalva (AZ)

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May 22, 2023
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