You can now read 5 articles in a month for free on BostonGlobe.com. Read as much as you want anywhere and anytime for just 99¢.

Red Sox Live

3

13

Final

GOP lawmakers urge overhaul of Endangered Species Act

BILLINGS, Mont. — Republicans in Congress called Tuesday for an overhaul to the Endangered Species Act to curtail environmentalists’ lawsuits and give more power to states, but specialists say broad changes to one of the nation’s cornerstone environmental laws are unlikely given the pervasive partisan divide in Washington

A group of 13 lawmakers released a report proposing ‘‘targeted reforms’’ for the federal law, which protects imperiled plants and animals.

Continue reading below

Proponents credit the law with staving off extinction for hundreds of species — from the bald eagle to the gray whale. But critics contend the law has been abused by environmental groups seeking to restrict development.

Led by Representative Cynthia Lummis of Wyoming and Representative Doc Hastings of Washington state, who chairs the House Natural Resources Committee, the Republicans want to amend the law to limit litigation from wildlife advocates that has resulted in protections for some species. And they want to give states more authority over imperiled species within their borders.

Also among the recommendations are increased scientific transparency, better economic impact studies, and safeguards for private landowners.

The Republicans said only 2 percent of protected species have been recovered despite billions of dollars in federal and state spending.

‘‘The biggest problem is that the Endangered Species Act is not recovering species,’’ said Hastings. ‘‘The way the act was written, there is more of an effort to list [species as endangered or threatened] than to delist.’’

The political hurdles for an overhaul are considerable. The law enjoys support among many environmentalists, whose Democratic allies have thwarted past proposals for change.

Federal wildlife officials had not yet seen the report from Hastings’ group and would not comment until they review it, said a press secretary for the US Fish and Wildlife Service.

Loading comments...
Subscriber Log In

We hope you've enjoyed your 5 free articles'

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com
Already a subscriber?
Your city. Your stories. Your Globe.
Yours FREE for two weeks.
Enjoy free unlimited access to Globe.com for the next two weeks.
Limited time only - No credit card required!
BostonGlobe.com complimentary digital access has been provided to you, without a subscription, for free starting today and ending in 14 days. After the free trial period, your free BostonGlobe.com digital access will stop immediately unless you sign up for BostonGlobe.com digital subscription. Current print and digital subscribers are not eligible for the free trial.
Thanks & Welcome to Globe.com
You now have unlimited access for the next two weeks.
BostonGlobe.com complimentary digital access has been provided to you, without a subscription, for free starting today and ending in 14 days. After the free trial period, your free BostonGlobe.com digital access will stop immediately unless you sign up for BostonGlobe.com digital subscription. Current print and digital subscribers are not eligible for the free trial.