Last week, alongside our partners and supporters, CalWild mobilized to stop the passage of HR 2936, the Resilient Forest Act of 2017. This bill, if passed, would weaken the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), exempt activities dangerous to vulnerable wildlife from Endangered Species Act protections, and even allow for the revocation of Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument. While it’s tempting to say it is a poster child for Congress’ seemingly intransigent anti-conservationism, the reality is that there are many bills just as bad as this in both houses of Congress right now – and with President Trump leading them, they have no main obstacles to their passage.
HR 2936 unfortunately passed the House in a vote last week 232-188, showing the stark divide that exists between our elected officials and the will of the American people, who are not nearly as averse to environmental protections as our current lawmakers are. That’s because the majority of us enjoy our public lands, their wildlife, and the clean air, water, and soil that these places maintain.
Curious about who voted for this monstrous bill? Well, the entire California Republican delegation, for one (Calvert, Cook, Denham, Hunter, Issa, Knight, LaMalfa, McCarthy, McClintock, Nunes, Rohrabacher, Royce, Valadao, Walters), as well as Rep. Costa, a Democrat. Shameful! You can give them a piece of your mind here.
It hurts to see flagrant industry giveaways like this, but our advocacy and watchdog tactics must continue. If we can’t rely on our lawmakers to vote with the constituents’ best interests, we need to ramp up the volume of dissent. While we team with our national partners to defeat HR 2936 in the Senate, we will be focusing our energies on other threats like HR 3990 and retaining sage grouse protections in the short-term.
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