Rep. Susan Davis Amendment Keeps Effects of Climate Change Part of Conservation Decisions

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Washington, DC, February 5, 2014 | comments

Congresswoman Susan Davis (CA-53) joined her colleagues in offering an amendment to let the Secretary of the Interior include climate change in considering decisions on conservation and recreation on public lands.  The amendment was an effort to improve a House Majority bill attempting to undermine environmental protections for National Parks. 

“We have a responsibility to protect these federal lands for the enjoyment of future generations and the amendment I am cosponsoring would ensure the science of climate change stays a part of that effort,” said Davis. “Overall, this bill is not only unnecessary since most activities laid out are already allowed in federal lands, it rolls back protections from toxic chemicals putting sensitive species and environments at risk.  It’s disappointing that the House continues to focus on efforts to weaken environmental laws rather than address legislation to create jobs and expand the middle class.”

Described as an effort to promote hunting on federal land, the bill creates a committee within the Department of Interior. Yet such a committee already exists, whose charter is to promote and preserve America’s wildlife and hunting heritage. It also weakens the Toxic Substance Control Act to limit the definition of ‘chemical substance’ threatening to increase exposure to lead and other toxic chemicals.

Davis and a number of her House colleagues offered an amendment to improve the bill. The amendment stated that nothing in the bill should prohibit the Secretary of the Interior from taking into consideration climate change when making decisions on conservation efforts and recreation on public lands. Not surprisingly, the House majority blocked the amendment’s passage.

National Wildlife Federation, the Sierra Club, and the National Parks Conservation Association have endorsed the amendment by Davis and her colleagues.


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