As if George W. Bush hasn't done enough to destroy USA's environmental regulations, now he wants to further limit The Endangered Species Act.
The Bush administration wants federal agencies to decide for themselves whether highways, dams, mines and other construction projects might harm endangered animals and plants.
New regulations, which don't require the approval of Congress, would reduce the mandatory, independent reviews government scientists have been performing for 35 years, according to a draft first obtained by The Associated Press.
Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne said late Monday the changes were needed to ensure that the Endangered Species Act would not be used as a "back door" to regulate the gases blamed for global warming. In May, the polar bear became the first species declared as threatened because of climate change. Warming temperatures are expected to melt the sea ice the bear depends on for survival. CNN Link
As if this wasn't enough....the spotted owl, a threatened species in the Northwest is losing part of its old growth forest habitat.
The Bush administration has decided that the northern spotted owl can get by with less old growth forest habitat as it struggles to get off the threatened species list.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said Tuesday it would cut by 23 percent the federal forest land designated as critical habitat for the owl in Washington, Oregon and Northern California. Designating critical habitat for protection is a requirement of the Endangered Species Act.
Is the spotted owl no longet threatened?
owl numbers are dropping by 4 percent a year. AP Wire