August 18, 2022

Court Nixes Trump-Era Rules Loosening Endangered Species Protections

2 min read
Court nixes Trump-era rules loosening endangered species protections

Protections for endangered animals that were relaxed during the Trump administration were reinstated by a federal court on Tuesday.

The contested regulations were overturned by Obama’s appointment of Judge Jon Tigar.

According to the Trump regulations, threatened species – those that are likely to go extinct soon — no longer received the same level of protection from the Fish and Wildlife Service as endangered species do.

Court nixes Trump-era rules loosening endangered species protections

As part of the regulations, it would have been possible to take into account the financial effects of protecting a species. The possibility that the guidelines would restrict consideration of climate change was another issue raised by conservationists.

Environmentalists filed the action as a result of their strong opposition to the Trump administration’s changes.

Kristen Boyles, an attorney with Earthjustice, told The Hill that the Endangered Species Act’s main goal is to provide protection for species that are in danger of going extinct.

Court nixes Trump-era rules loosening endangered species protections

Boyles continued, “The Trump regulations that were now rescinded did nothing to help animals and in fact did affirmative harm to how species are protected in this nation. “By the court’s decision today, we return to the regulation’s long-standing interpretation,” said the judge.

The modifications were finalized under the Trump administration, which claimed to be “reducing the regulatory load on the American citizen.”

Although the Biden administration did not urge the court to invalidate the new rules in the meantime, it did ask the court to request a second review of the Trump regulations last year.

Court nixes Trump-era rules loosening endangered species protections

The removal of the Trump regulations while it evaluates them “would cause confusion… by abruptly shifting the applicable regulatory framework and causing doubt about which standards to apply,” the report stated.

But in this instance, Tigar argued that since the Biden administration had said it would review the restrictions, it “seems improbable” that doing away with them completely would make things any more confusing.

Tyler Cherry, a representative for the Interior Department, responded when contacted for comment by saying that the department was “reviewing the decision.”

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