Do Not End Protections for Migratory Birds

Target: Ryan Zinke, Secretary of the Interior

Goal: Do not rollback the protections of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, allowing industries to cause the death of birds en masse without facing consequences.

The Trump administration is attempting to legalize the killing of massive numbers of migratory birds, as long as the industries that cause those deaths do so unintentionally. By narrowing the definition of what is covered under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, companies will no longer have to put measures in place to make their practices as safe as possible for wildlife. There will no longer be consequences for oil drilling companies who fail to store their toxic waste in closed containers, or for fishing boats that don’t use waited nets to avoid drowning seabirds.

This law protecting migratory birds is over a century old, and the Trump administration’s interpretation would make it nearly impossible to enforce. Seventeen former wildlife officials sent a letter opposing this rollback, and pointed out the way that it attacks fundamental conservation principles that both Democrats and Republicans have supported for decades. Currently, companies that violate these protections face criminal prosecution, but it does not hamper their industries. They receive warnings multiple warnings before prosecution, and then partner with the government to enact conservation efforts at minimal cost. For instance, communications towers whose lights were attracting and killing birds simply had to use flashing lights—which the towers were already equipped with—instead of steady ones to solve the problem. However, as the Nature Conservancy points out, this narrowed interpretation will “adversely affect birds and diminish the motivation for creative conservation partnerships.” Sign below to demand the prevention of thousands of unnecessary deaths of migratory birds.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Interior Secretary Zinke,

It is immoral and irresponsible to cancel protections for migratory birds that have been in place for decades. The Migratory Bird Treaty Act helps prevent countless unnecessary deaths of birds, massively benefits the environment, and does not put undue restrictions on industry. As it stands, companies receive warnings before they are prosecuted for violating these laws, and often partner with the government and find effective and affordable solutions to protect our wildlife.

This narrowing of interpretation is widely opposed by Republicans and Democrats alike, as well as by the vast majority of former Interior Secretaries and other high ranking officials of the Interior Department as a whole. It is an assault on environmental regulations and on our country’s fundamental principles of conservation. I urge you not to diminish the protections for migratory birds under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Brocken Inaglory

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2 Comments

  1. Remmeber the old adage, “the extinction of one is the extinction of the other.” One day, the other might be us. Protect all living beings.

  2. KEEP THE MIGRATORY BIRDS PROTECTED.

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