NESARC Applauds Senate Hearing on Modernization of the Endangered Species Act15 February 2017
(WASHINGTON, DC) —The National Endangered Species Act Reform Coalition (NESARC) applauds Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee Chairman John Barrasso (R-WY) for convening today’s oversight hearing to address the need to modernize the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The hearing is an important first step early in the 115th Congress to inform lawmakers on significant problems with the law, while offering opportunities to advance improvements to benefit imperiled species across the nation.
“NESARC is pleased that Chairman Barrasso is moving quickly to begin a dialogue among stakeholders about opportunities to update the ESA,” said NESARC Chairman Ryan Yates. “We are looking forward to working with the Chairman, as well as all interested lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, to identify and implement long overdue changes to the law. Today’s hearing starts us on a path to achieving those critical objectives.”
The Endangered Species Act was signed into law in 1973, and has not been reauthorized since 1988. For nearly 25 years, the law has remained unchanged and continues to be enforced, despite the lack of Congressional authorization. Since its enactment over 43 years ago, less than two percent of species that have been listed as endangered or threatened have been successfully recovered.
“Chairman Barrasso’s desire to hold a hearing to collect input from a diverse group of witnesses with unique experiences related to the Endangered Species Act sends a clear message that he is willing to listen to a broad array of perspectives,” said NESARC Executive Director Jordan Smith. “The facilitation of an open and honest conversation about updating the ESA has the potential to translate to real policy solutions. NESARC and its members stand ready to assist in this effort.”
NESARC is the country’s oldest broad-based, national coalition dedicated solely to achieving improvements to the ESA and its implementation. The Coalition includes agricultural interests, cities and counties, commercial real estate developers, conservationists, electric utilities, energy producers, farmers, forest product companies, home builders, landowners, oil and gas companies, ranchers, water and irrigation districts, and other businesses and individuals throughout the United States. NESARC and its members are committed to promoting effective and balanced legislative and administrative improvements to the ESA that support the protection of fish, wildlife, and plant populations as well as responsible land, water, and resource management.# # #