RIDER IN WATER INFRASTRUCTURE BILL THREATENS CA BAY DELTA, ENDANGERED WILDLIFE, WATER QUALITY AND FISHING JOBS
WASHINGTON (December 10, 2016) – The United States Senate passed the Water Infrastructure Improvement for the Nation Act (S. 612), which includes a disastrous rider for California water, fishing jobs and wildlife. On December 5, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), inserted a secretly negotiated anti-environmental rider into the bill that jeopardizes salmon, Delta smelt and other endangered species in California.
Statement from Defenders of Wildlife President and CEO Jamie Rappaport Clark:
“This rider harms both water quality and wildlife in California’s Bay-Delta. The legislation endangers salmon runs and other native fish, impairs water quality, and sets up years of legal battles.
“The bill passed over strenuous objections from Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA) , who did everything in their power to fight for salmon and other imperiled wildlife. Their efforts should inspire environmental champions in the next Congress.
“House Majority Leader McCarthy (R-CA) aided by Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) cynically used the Flint community’s need for clean water to gut environmental protections for fish and wildlife. However, this was a false choice created by opportunistic politicians who have signaled that they will use any means at their disposal to roll back important environmental protections. If this is the new way of business for the next Congress, we will fight them every step of the way, because voters did not vote to roll back protections for water, air and wildlife.”
Defenders of Wildlife is dedicated to the protection of all native animals and plants in their natural communities. With more than 1.2 million members and activists, Defenders of Wildlife is a leading advocate for innovative solutions to safeguard our wildlife heritage for generations to come. For more information, visit www.defenders.org. For the latest news from Defenders, follow us at @DefendersNews.