"The Center for Biological Diversity ('CBD') has recently taken the first step toward using the Endangered Species Act ('ESA') to regulate industries accused of contributing to global warming. If CBD is successful, virtually every segment of U.S. industry will become subject to the ESA's standard to insure no harm to ESA-protected species."
Quotes on Endangered Species Act
"Property is surely a right of mankind as real as liberty ... The moment the idea is admitted into society that property is not as sacred as the laws of God, and that there is not a force of law and public justice to protect it, anarchy and tyranny commence."
"Over 1,900 species of plants and animals - 1,351 domestic and 570 foreign - are currently considered by the federal government to be in danger of extinction... Proponents of the ESA cite species that have recovered due to the Act. Yet, almost invariably these claims are untrue or exaggerated. For example, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service officially claims 46 delisted species - 19 due to recovery, 17 due to data error, 9 due to extinction and one due to partial recovery/data error. In reality, the delistings were due to the following:
Twenty-seven species have been removed due to data error - including the American alligator, which was delisted soon after its initial listing because it was found to be abundant, clearly indicating it was never endangered and was improperly surveyed. Nine species were determined to be extinct. Five species were delisted due primarily to factors unrelated to the ESA, including the ban on the pesticide DDT. Five species were delisted for a variety of other reasons including: private conservation; state, not federal, conservation efforts; and recovery despite harm done by the ESA."
"In the most basic terms, the [ESA] penalizes and thus discourages the creation and maintenance of species habitat on private land. According to University of Arizona economist Robert Innes, 'the possibility of uncompensated takings gives landowners an incentive to develop their property early on in order to reduce the risk that it will later be appropriated for public use.' Such incentives have consequences. As Robert J. Smith wrote in Regulation 15 years ago, 'The perverse incentive structure of the act accelerates destruction of the very habitat the act was designed to protect.'
Anecdotal accounts of landowners who have sought to avoid having 'endangered species problems' on their land are rampant. In Texas, property owners raze juniper tree stands favored by golden-cheeked warblers, while in California's Central Valley landowners disc brush and low-lying habitat favored by small endangered mammals such as kangaroo rats. There are even stories of landowners who 'shoot, shovel, and shut up' when they encounter endangered species on or near their land."
"'The purpose of these changes is to reduce ambiguity, improve consistency, and narrow interpretive differences, even within the Services. They are a positive step forward,' said Dale Hall, Director of the Fish and Wildlife Service. 'In 1986, our existing rules made sense. At that time very few Federal action agencies had any in-depth expertise with section 7 and listed species, but that is not the case today. We are not being good stewards of our resources when we pursue consultation in situations where the potential effects to a species are either unlikely, incapable of being meaningfully evaluated, wholly beneficial, or pose only a remote risk of causing jeopardy to the species or its habitat.'"
"The proposed rule is consistent with the FWS (Fishing and Wildlife Service) current understanding that it is not possible to draw a direct causal link between greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and distant observations of impacts affecting species. As a result, it is inappropriate to consult on a remote agency action involving the contribution of emissions to global warming because it is not possible to link the emissions to impacts on specific listed species such as polar bears."
"This special rule will ensure that this icon of the arctic retains important protections as we work with the State of Alaska and other nations within the polar bear's range to develop and implement conservation measures. But as President Bush and I have said before, the ESA is not the right tool to set U.S. climate change policy."
"Just five years ago, Charles Monnett was one of the scientists whose observation that several polar bears had drowned in the Arctic Ocean helped galvanize the global warming movement.
Now, the wildlife biologist is on administrative leave and facing accusations of scientific misconduct.
The federal agency where he works told him he was on leave pending the results of an investigation into 'integrity issues.' A watchdog group believes it has to do with the 2006 journal article about the bear, but a source familiar with the investigation said late Thursday that placing Monnett on leave had nothing to with scientific integrity or the article."