Friday, January 10, 2014

Congressman Moran Champions Endangered Species Act


The Endangered Species Act was passed in 1973 because Americans believed that protecting our wildlife was an obligation to future generations, our nation’s environmental health, our fellow creatures, and the heart of the American way of life. It included wildlife ranges and habitats irrespective of political boundaries because these habitats, which are vital to species survival, cross arbitrary lines.  For nearly 40 years, the ESA has helped prevent the extinction of our nation's wildlife treasures

With extinction there is no turning back, no second chance. For species deserving protection, delaying a decision to provide protection and recovery will bring the most vulnerable species even closer to the brink of extinction, restrict the options available for achieving recovery, and increase the eventual cost of the recovery process.

Although the ESA is often considered the most successful piece of environmental legislation ever passed, it remains contested and controversial, particularly on the question of balancing economic and environmental health. Sadly, many of the industries and special interests responsible for the original habitat destruction which inspired the ESA have been fighting for years to destroy the Act itself, and have seized upon the wolf as the excuse to finally exterminate it.
Recently, the Wolf Conservation Center’s Advocacy Team launched a campaign in opposition to

 “The Endangered Species Management Self-Determination Act” (S. 1731), a bill that proposes to amend the Endangered Species Act of 1973 by permitting governors of states to regulate intrastate endangered species and intrastate threatened species. That means this bill can potentially threaten the heart and spirit of the ESA and the thousands of species it safeguards by allowing individual states to favor political special interests and ignore critical federal mandates which are vital to preserving the rich biodiversity that remains in the United States.

Based on the continued efforts of our campaign and the overwhelming response of our supporters, it is clearly evident that the American public will not tolerate this extreme assault to gut this law. In recognition of this growing voice, the WCC Advocacy Team reached out to Congressman Jim Moran who is currently serving his twelfth term as U.S. Representative from Virginia’s 8th District. A senior member of the Appropriations Committee, Congressman Moran serves as the Ranking Member on the Subcommittee on the Interior and Environment.  Throughout his two decades of service in the House of Representatives, Congressman Moran has demonstrated vigorous and unwavering leadership in support of the environment.  In response to our outreach regarding his position on Senate Bill 1731 and its companion bill in the House, H.R. 3533 he said,

“The ESA successfully brought the gray wolf back from the brink of extinction.  Unfortunately, easement of federal protections is allowing states to again treat these wolves as predators, rather than a necessary, important part of the ecosystem. Science, not prejudice and fear, should guide the federal Endangered Species Act. This legislation is not needed and would enflame a race to exterminate, not protect the gray wolf.”    ~Congressman Jim Moran, 8th District, Virginia

Those who seek to gut the Endangered Species Act are violating a decades-old bi-partisan consensus among Americans that wildlife and ecologies are invaluable and worth protecting. Just as the quality of our air and water cannot be left to the individual States, neither can the continued healthy survival of our critically endangered wildlife. On behalf of thousands our supporters who continue to participate in our campaign, we wish to express our sincerest gratitude to Congressman Moran for his steadfast commitment to defending and preserving the integrity of the most historically significant environmental law of our nation, the Endangered Species Act.

To add your voice to the groundswell of growing opposition to Senate Bill 1731, please click here.  When you sign the Popvox campaign, your vote goes directly to the lawmakers who represent you! If you like, you can also send a short *optional* message along with your vote. Please ask your representatives to oppose the bill too. Thank you!

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