09-26-16 NCBA-PLC News: USFWS Takes Steps to Address ESA Deficiencies

NCBA PLC logosU.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Takes Steps to Address ESA Deficiencies

WASHINGTON (Sept. 26, 2016) – Today, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service released a final rule that begins to address rampant abuse of the Endangered Species Act listing process. The rule limits petitions for new listings to one species and will require more substantive justification in order to file a petition for listing under the ESA. The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association and the Public Lands Council applaud FWS for taking steps to address these serious shortcomings.

“We have been pushing for reforms to the broken ESA listing process for quite some time, and this final rule is a great step in the right direction,” said Ethan Lane, NCBA federal Lands and PLC executive director. “Limiting petitions to one species at a time will provide some desperately needed focus, and notification to the states affected in a timely manner – even if only 30 days – is progress toward increasing local input into the process.”

The ESA, which is continuously abused by radical environmental groups, has a less than two percent recovery rate. Groups like the Center for Biological Diversity threaten litigation in order to force action on hundreds of species, without any regard for a recovery plan or actual species recovery. This continued abuse hampers real conservation efforts and species recovery by forcing arbitrary listing decisions that leave no time for sound research or science-based decisions.

“Serious groups from across the spectrum that are engaged in true conservation will applaud these changes,” said Lane. “By the same token, the habitual high-volume ESA abusers will be pretty easy to spot by their opposition to the rule.”

The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) has represented America’s cattle producers since 1898, preserving the heritage and strength of the industry through education and public policy.  As the largest association of cattle producers, NCBA works to create new markets and increase demand for beef.  Efforts are made possible through membership contributions. To join, contact NCBA at 1-866-BEEF-USA or membership@beef.org.

Public Lands Council (PLC) has represented livestock ranchers who use public lands since 1968, preserving the natural resources and unique heritage of the West. Ranchers who utilize public lands own nearly 120 million acres of the most productive private land and manage vast areas of public land, accounting for critical wildlife habitat and the nation’s natural resources. PLC works to maintain a stable business environment in which livestock producers can conserve the West and feed the nation and world.