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David J. Hayes: Endangered Species Act Represents Crucial Environmental Safeguard, Must Be Protected

July 24, 2018
Contact: Christopher Gray
(929) 333-6213

Washington, D.C.David J. Hayes, executive director of the State Energy & Environmental Impact Center at NYU School of Law and former Interior deputy secretary in the Obama and Clinton Administrations, released the following statement in response to the Interior Department’s proposed changes to the Endangered Species Act:

“The Endangered Species Act is one of the most significant pieces of environmental legislation in U.S. history. Since its enactment in 1973, the ESA has saved hundreds of imperiled species, including our nation's symbol, the bald eagle, from extinction. The ESA is a powerful, science-based law that has developed practical tools that enable private and public landowners alike to help protect God's creation, without compromising landowner rights or industry needs.

“In proposing to undermine key, time-tested ESA processes and protections, Secretary Zinke is pandering to fringe elements of the extraction industry that consider any protection for wildlife an unacceptable constraint on profits. This is not the type of leadership we should expect, or tolerate, from the primary steward to our nation's natural resources. Our communities, and our wildlife, deserve better."


The State Energy & Environmental Impact Center is a non-partisan Center at the NYU School of Law that is dedicated to helping state attorneys general fight against regulatory rollbacks and advocate for clean energy, climate change, and environmental values and protections. It was launched in August 2017 with support from Bloomberg Philanthropies.