The Trump administration put forward plans to reduce federal regulatory protections for birds on Friday despite criticism from scientists and former federal officials that the move would likely be seriously damaging to the U.S. bird population.
The US Fish and Wildlife Service released its Final environmental impact statement on the proposed modification of 1918 Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA) which would severely limit federal power to sue industries for practices that kill migratory birds.
The law was first passed “to end the unregulated killing of migratory birds,” according to Friday’s report. By law, the Fish and Wildlife Service regulates the “taking” of migratory birds, which includes “chase, hunt, shoot, injure, kill, trap, capture, collect or attempt to hunt, shoot, injure, kill , trap, capture or collect. ”
The proposed change is intended to clarify the scope of the definition, although many have pointed out that the change will reduce the federal power to prosecute for threats faced by birds from the industry, including electrocution on power lines, wind turbines that strike them from air and oil. garbage pits on the land where landing birds can die in toxic water.
While the Fish and Wildlife Service acknowledged in its report that the regulatory change will have “negative” impacts on migratory birds, as well as “other living resources”, “cultural resources” and “ecosystem services”, the report states that the proposed change “is necessary to improve the consistency and effectiveness of the enforcement of MBTA bans across the country and to inform the public, businesses, government agencies and other entities what is and is not prohibited under the MBTA.
According to the Fish and Wildlife Service and recent studies, industry activities kill about 450 million to 1.1 billion birds each year, out of about 7 billion birds in North America.
A federal judge in New York in August rejected the push by the Trump administration for the rule change, although the agency pushed forward with the change, whatever.
According to the Associated Press, federal officials brought forward bird treaty changes to the White House, one of the last steps before adoption, just two days after the president-elect. Joe bidenJoe BidenTrump says he will leave the White House if Biden is declared winner of Electoral College The Memo: Biden faces tough road to pledge to heal American nation records 2,300 COVID-19 deaths as pandemic escalates with vacation PLUS was screened the winner of the 2020 election.
David Yarnold, President of the National Audubon Society, said in a statement Friday that Trump was “in a frenzy to finalize his bird killer policy.”
Yarnold added that “restoring this century-old basic law must be a top conservation priority for the Biden-Harris administration” and Congress.
The proposed change is the latest in a series of acts by the Trump administration aimed at passing pro-industry legislation before Biden takes office in January, including expanding Arctic drilling and a legislation that promotes industrial development over the protection of endangered species.