Three ways US Congress could act to protect imperiled wildlife
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🗞️ Driving the news: The United States, along with the rest of the world, is facing significant threats to its wildlife and ecosystems
• A report from NatureServe indicates that one-third of U.S. plants and 40% of its animals are at risk of extinction, while about 41% of U.S. ecosystems could face collapse
• Freshwater species like mussels and amphibians are especially vulnerable
🔭 The context: Three significant bills introduced in Congress this year offer potential relief
• These are the Recovering America’s Wildlife Act, the Extinction Prevention Act, and the Migratory Birds of the Americas Conservation Enhancements Act
🌎 Why does it matter for the planet: These proposed legislative actions could not only help safeguard U.S. wildlife and ecosystems but also contribute to global biodiversity conservation efforts
• They could serve as a model for other countries grappling with similar challenges.
⏭️ What's next: If passed, the proposed Recovering America's Wildlife Act, allocating over $1.3 billion for state wildlife agencies and $97.5 million for tribal programs, offering an unparalleled investment in habitat preservation
• Additionally, the Extinction Prevention Act pledges $20 million annually for critically endangered species
• While the Migratory Birds of the Americas Conservation Enhancements Act intends to expand and renew the expiring Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Act.
💬 One quote: "This funding would be a game changer for fish and wildlife professionals in their ability to conserve species that we all care about most." (Caroline Murphy, Government Relations Manager for The Wildlife Society)
📈 One stat: From 1998 to 2012, over 80% of all government spending went to support only 5% of all listed species, while the other 80% of listed species shared less than 5% of all funds
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