Nearly 50 years ago, the Endangered Species Act was passed to safeguard endangered and threatened species and their habitats.
But now, the Endangered Species Act is under threat. H.R. 1—the so-called “Lower Energy Costs Act”—would allow for a complete exemption for all seismic blasting from the Endangered Species Act and the Marine Mammal Protection Act. These deafening surveys generate some of the loudest sounds humans put into our ocean and harm countless dolphins, fish, sea turtles and whales. Imagine if fireworks or explosives went off in your neighborhood every 10 seconds, all day and all night.
According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, these blasts disrupt marine mammal feeding, breeding and other vital behaviors more than one million times each year, with several hundred cases of permanent hearing damage.
The Endangered Species Act has helped preserve countless species and save them from extinction, and rollbacks to this legislation would quite literally be deadly. As we celebrate half a century of this vital law, let’s come together and tell the United States Senate to reject H.R. 1.