Every few years, some anti-environmental member of Congress decides that the time has come to "reform" the U.S. Endangered Species Act (ESA). This typically consists of siding with logging, oil and gas, mining, and other polluting industries. Rep. Doc Hastings (R-WA) is the latest to join this group and his proposals consist of weakening the ESA into oblivion.
The ESA has been critical to the protection of imperiled wildlife on the verge of extinction, including the bald eagle and grizzly bear. We need to make it clear to Congress that they are our elected representatives and they need to be our voice in Washington.
Americans have clearly expressed that our nation's natural heritage must be protected for future generations. Allowing anti-environmental corporate interests to dismember the ESA would reverse decades of progress and prove that Congress doesn't represent the interests of their constituents.
Americans want to put wildlife protection ahead of corporate special interests and polluters. Tell Congress to reject anti-wildlife proposals and uphold the ESA.
Dear [Elected Representative],
40 years ago, when America faced the near extinction of some of our most iconic species like the bald eagle and grizzly bear, the nation collectively decided that our treasured natural resources needed protection, that they were too valuable to our way of life and our economy to let perish or further degrade. Americans came together to safeguard our nation's wildlife and our leaders passed one of this country's bedrock environmental laws: the Endangered Species Act. By doing so, we recognized that we have a responsibility as stewards of our natural resources.
Gutting the ESA has been a deregulation goal that polluting industries have sought for decades. The most common excuse is the myth that the ESA hurts our economy. The truth is, we can protect imperiled species and habitats for future generations, even as we grow our economy. In fact, economists estimate that value provided by natural habitat in the nation's 48 contiguous states amounts to $1.6 trillion annually — equivalent to more than 10 percent of the U.S. GDP.
So please think twice before you make a decision that will condemn us to a future without many of the incredible wildlife and plant species we have cherished for generations.
[Your comments here]
I urge you to oppose extinction and support the ESA by opposing Rep. Doc Hastings' and other anti-wildlife proposals that claim to 'reform' the ESA. Please don't turn your back on the values our nation embraced decades ago when we passed this law.
[Your name here]
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