Washington Representative Dan Newhouse, the Congressional Western Caucus, and the House Committee on Natural Resources launched the Endangered Species Act Working Group.
The new group will look into how the Endangered Species Act is being implemented by federal agencies, the practical impacts on the American people, how litigation is driving ESA decision-making, and how success is currently defined under the act. The group intends to publish a series of policy recommendations that reform the ESA to the benefit of the American people and species conservation.
“It’s clear the ESA desperately needs reform,” Newhouse says. “Not just for the sake of our species, but for the people who are negatively impacted because of its land-use restrictions, impact on property values, and costly permitting requirements.”
Hundreds of species are listed under the act, but only three percent have been delisted. “Clearly, something is not working,” says Natural Resources Chair Bruce Westerman of Arkansas.