May 16, 2019

Harris, Colleagues Introduce Legislation to Protect America’s Precious Biodiversity and Help Combat Mass Extinction Crisis

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Kamala D. Harris (D-CA) on Thursday joined Senator Tom Udall (D-NM) and Representative Don Beyer (D-VA), along with 8 of their colleagues, in introducing the bipartisan Wildlife Corridors Conservation Act of 2019 to begin reversing the tide of habitat loss and fragmentation for America’s fish, wildlife, and plant species – a major factor in species decline and extinction. The legislation would give authority to key federal agencies to designate National Wildlife Corridors on federal lands in order to create a comprehensive corridor network that would boost biodiversity, protect ecosystems, and help safeguard America’s most iconic species from a mass extinction crisis.

“Scientists and experts have sent us a warning, loud and clear: we must take bold action to safeguard the vitality and biodiversity of our planet in order to further our fight against the climate crisis. I’m proud to join my colleagues in this legislation to utilize our nation’s public lands to protect our nation’s wildlife,” said Harris. 

A sweeping new United Nation report found that one million plant and animal species are facing extinction – and that habitat destruction caused by human activity is a key threat. By connecting similar pieces of land into stretches of habitat to allow migration, wildlife corridors can reverse the process of habitat loss and fragmentation, protecting migration routes and safeguarding species from the devastating impacts of a changing climate and habitat loss due to development.

In addition to Harris, Udall, and Beyer, the legislation is co-sponsored by U.S. Senators Cory A. Booker (D-NJ), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Ron Wyden (D-OR), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Bernie Sanders (D-VT), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Jon Tester (D-MT), and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA). In the House, it is co-sponsored by Representative Vern Buchanan (R-FL).

The full text of the bill is available HERE.

A summary of the legislation can be found HERE.