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Endangered Species Legislation Essay

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The latter half of the twentieth century was host to the greatest and most widespread advancements in environmental awareness in human history. It was during this time that people began to consider the effects of their polluting cars and their wasteful habits. People began to realize that something must be done to curb humans’ negative impacts on their surroundings and thus the environmental movement was born. One of the most important factors that resulted from this expansion of environmental consciousness occurring over the last several decades has been the protection of endangered species. Much has been done in the legal world to ensure the continued longevity of our planet’s diversity, including two major policies: CITES and the Endangered Species Act. Each of these policies has approached the welfare of endangered species in a different way, with varying degrees of success. Each strategy will be summarized and analyzed, beginning with the CITES treaty, as it was enacted before the Endangered Species Act. However, before examining the function and effectiveness of each strategy, it is important to understand the history behind each one of them.
In 1966, Congress passed the Endangered Species Preservation Act, a piece of legislation designed to provide limited protection to a list of native animal species. The Departments of Interior, Agriculture, and Defense were responsible for the protection of these species and the preservation of their habitats. It also allotted land to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to help maintain these natural habitats. In 1969, the Act was amended because further protection was necessary. With the threat of worldwide extinction, the amendment called for an international meeting and cha...


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...es rather than the officials that manage them, but all things considered, these two policies go a long way to improving the problem of human-caused extinction.



Works Cited

Doremus, Holly, and Joel E. Pagel. "Why Listing May Be Forever: Perspectives on
Delisting Under the U.S. Endangered Species Act." Conservation Biology, Vol. 15, No. 5 (Oct. 2001): 1258-68.
Hemley, Ginette. "CITES: How Useful a Tool For Wildlife Conservation?" Wildlife
Society Bulletin, Vol. 23, No. 4, Changes and Challenges in the Wildlife Profession (Winter, 1995): 635-39.
"History and Evolution of the Endangered Species Act of 1973, Including its
Relationship to CITES." Fish and Wildlife Service. 1 May 2008. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 2 Dec. 2008 .
Reibstein, Rick. "Endangered Species Act." CAS GE 521, Boston, MA. 19 Nov.
2008.


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