Statement: New legislation would help species recover before time runs out

The bill would help iconic animals including wood bison, peregrine falcons, and West Indian manatees
For Immediate Release

WASHINGTON -- The Senate Committee on the Environment and Public Works held a hearing on Wednesday on the Recovering America’s Wildlife Act (S. 2372). The bill would dedicate funding to protect critical fish and wildlife species in every state and would allow for proactive conservation efforts to bolster species before they become federally designated as endangered.

States have previously had great success in restoring endangered and threatened species, such as bald eagles, white-tailed deer and striped bass. For example, though the wood bison had virtually disappeared from Alaska over the last few hundred years, it was recently reintroduced to the state with help from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, and other partners. As a result of this effort, wood bison herds in Alaska are growing and expanding their range. The Recovering America’s Wildlife Act aims to build on those accomplishments.

Like the Great American Outdoors Act — which Environment America championed because it funds the Land and Water Conservation Fund and national parks maintenance — the Recovering America’s Wildlife Act represents a significant opportunity to protect habitats, fish and wildlife across the country.

The bill still must pass out of House and Senate committees and through both chambers before becoming law.

Following the hearing, experts from Environment America and its state partner Environment Missouri issued the following statements:

Environment Missouri State Director Bridget Sanderson released the following statement: 

“The country’s fish and wildlife are in desperate need of protection while we witness declining populations, sometimes drastically, due to habitat loss and climate change. The good news is that the bipartisan Recovering America’s Wildlife Act would provide vital funding towards protection of Missouri’s treasured wildlife. With so many species at risk, wildlife conservation investments just make sense.”

Environment America Federal Legislative Associate Kevin Pollack issued the following statement: 

“This bill is a well-needed investment in wildlife at a critical time. With states identifying more than 12,000 species at risk of becoming endangered, it is time states have the resources to effectively implement plans and prevent that from happening.”