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Endangered Species Act meets economic reality

by Harvest Prude
Posted 8/13/19, 12:18 pm

WASHINGTON—For the first time, the U.S. government will assess the economic effect of placing a plant or animal on the endangered species list, the Trump administration announced Monday. The Endangered Species Act protects more than 1,600 species in the United States and its territories.

Why the changes? Interior Secretary David Bernhardt said the shift would modernize the 1973 act and reduce its regulatory burden. Regulators will also stop applying blanket protections to species recently tagged as under threat of extinction. Officials insist they will not use cost estimates as a factor in determining whether a species is endangered. But environmental activists said even calculating the cost will invite political interference. They argued the proposed changes could speed extinction for some species. Several states and Democratic lawmakers have already announced plans to challenge the proposed rule in court and in Congress.

Dig deeper: WORLD Magazine’s Sophia Lee and Angela Lu Fulton have written about the economic toll of protecting endangered fish in California.

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Harvest Prude

Harvest is a reporter for WORLD based in Washington, D.C.

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  • OldMike
    Posted: Wed, 08/14/2019 04:48 pm

    No!  Stop!  Hold up!  How can anyone place a monetary value on some tiny mollusk that lives in one obscure cave in the whole world, that only 10 people in the world have ever heard of, and only 2 people out of the entire human race have ever actually seen?  

    IT MUST BE PRESERVED!  Even if millions can’t heat their homes because a power generation facility won’t be built!  [for those who don’t know me, this is sarcasm]

    BTW, wind farms are murdering millions of birds, but selective outrage prevents most environmentalists from saying anything against wind farms.