Bush Wants to Shaft Endangered Species Before Leaving Office
He may be a lame duck, but the president still has the power to mess with America. His latest project: pushing through rule changes that would reduce protections for endangered species. Given the wonky complexities of the rule-changing process, it will be difficult for Barack Obama to undo the damage, but then that’s the whole point.
The proposed change would eliminate the input of federal wildlife scientists in some endangered species cases, allowing the federal agency in charge of building, authorizing or funding a project to determine for itself if it is likely to harm endangered wildlife and plants.
Current regulations require independent wildlife biologists to sign off on these decisions before a project can go forward, at times modifying the design to better protect species.