Shaheen Cosponsors Flagship Bipartisan Bill to Support Critical Fish & Wildlife Conservation NeedsMay 05, 2022
(Washington, DC) – U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) joined Senators Martin Heinrich (D-NM) and Roy Blunt (R-MO) in cosponsoring the bipartisan Recovering America’s Wildlife Act (RAWA). This landmark conservation legislation provides funding to state wildlife agencies, ramping up to $1.3 billion per year, to fully implement their State Wildlife Action Plans to address critical fish and wildlife conservation needs.
“New Hampshire’s landscapes and wildlife are integral to local ecosystems and draw outdoors enthusiasts from around the world. Conserving these national treasures must be a top priority – particularly amid rapidly evolving climate change that’s upending ecosystems. State fish and wildlife agencies need robust resources to carry out that mission and protect priority species, which is exactly what this bipartisan bill provides,” said Senator Shaheen. “I’m proud to join this landmark conservation legislation to proactively conserve habitats and support healthy fish and wildlife populations. I hope the bipartisan momentum behind this bill continues so we can get this across the finish line.”
Specifically, the bill includes provisions intended to:
- Fund conservation efforts for more than 12,000 species of wildlife and plants in need of assistance by providing dedicated annual funding for proactive, on-the-ground efforts across the country.
- Provide Tribal nations $97.5 million annually to fund proactive wildlife conservation efforts on roughly 140 million acres of land.
- Ensure wildlife recovery efforts will be guided by the Congressionally-mandated State Wildlife Action Plans, which identify specific strategies to restore the populations of species of greatest conservation need.
- Accelerate the recovery of 1,600 U.S. species already listed as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act.
Since introduction, the Recovering America’s Wildlife Act has gained significant momentum with 34 bipartisan sponsors and cosponsors, and is backed by over 60 Tribes and 1,500 organizations representing state fish and wildlife agencies, sportsmen and women, conservation groups, and industry associations and businesses. The bill was passed out of the Senate Committee on the Environment and Public Works last month.
Shaheen has led efforts to safeguard our natural environment. She urged the Biden administration to repeal an order and policy changes made in the final hours of the Trump presidency that would have hurt conservation efforts in New Hampshire. She also fought to secure full funding and permanent authorization for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), which has helped protect more than 2.5 million acres of land and supported tens of thousands of state and local outdoor recreation projects throughout the nation.
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