Endangered species protection essay

Monday, February 27, 2012

Essay 2- Protect endangered species

Protect endangered species

Have you ever thought about passing stricter laws to protect endangered species? Do you know what animals mean to us? Endangered animals need to be protected by us to live; they are part of the world. People should pass laws to protect our balanced environment, to have diversity and to preserve endangered animals.

Everything in the nature has a reason to be there. It’s important that every animal has necessary food, a place to live and a peaceful life. If they died, we wouldn’t have the same environment. The balance would be incomplete; it’s true that bad consequences will come. More weight in one side of our environment could affect us negatively.

Laws should be stricter because species can’t disappear. We are the people in charge of taking care of animals. Diversity means to have different species in order to develop a balanced world. Our planet is continually changing, causing habitats to be altered and modified; that affects our diversity. Every animal is important and needs to be there for our benefit.

Rapid habitat loss is the primary cause of species endangerment. The strongest forces in rapid habitat loss are human beings. Nearly every region of the earth has been affected by human activity. The extinction of these animals and various species in polluted habitats and changes in global climate brought about by release of greenhouse gasses are all results of us. Species in danger must be protected and saved so that future generations can experience their presence and value.

When species become endangered, it’s an indicator that the health of these vital ecosystems is disappearing. So, let’s think about the way we are taking care of them. For our benefit, we need to protect animals. Species are needed to supply us with food, conserve balance, interact with plants, and many others. Animals are alive; let’s make actions to take care of them!

Endangered Species Essay Sample

Get Full Essay

Get access to this section to get all help you need with your essay and educational issues.

Endangered Species Essay Sample

What is known as the Endangered Species Act began in mid-1960. In order for the Fish and Wildlife Service to expand their efforts to protect endangered species, Congress enacted the Endangered Species Preservation Act of 1966. This Act did little more than allow a list of endangered species to be made. The Act did not prohibit the killing of endangered species or the destruction of their habitat.

The lack of legal protection for the endangered species led the Fish and Wildlife Service to convince Congress to enact a second endanger species act called the Endangered Species Conservation Act of 1969. This law prohibited the commercial trade of wildlife and wildlife products, but did not prohibit the killing of endangered species. The 1969 law led to the United States holding and international meeting in 1972 where the Convention of International Trade in Endangered Species of Fauna and Flora (“CITES”) was drafted. The CITES treaty only dealt with the trade of endangered species, but it brought attention to the bigger issues that have caused their endangerment.

With environmental concern growing, both Congress and the Nixon administration were put on the task of expanding legislation to protect endangered species. (Bean, 2009). The implementation of the first Earth Day helped bring momentum to other environmental laws, including amendments to the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, the Marine Mammal Protection Act, the Coastal Zone Management Act, and in 1973, The Endangered Species Act. (Bean, 2009). Having had only a few amendments in 1978, 1982, and 1988, the Endangered Species Act has essentially remained the same since 1973. There are two primary agencies that enforce the Endangered Species Act’s regulations, the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service is responsible for the protection of land animals and freshwater animals, while NOAA is responsible for all marine species. With that being said, the Secretary of Agriculture has the responsibility of enforcing laws relating to the import and export of species, and the Department of Justice is responsible for enforcing criminal aspects of the Act and defending the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service and NOAA when the laws are challenged in court.

The joint regulations of the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior and National Marine Fisheries Service, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the Department of Commerce comprise the committee that write the regulations which can be found in the Code of Federal Regulations. Many of the key points of the Endangered Species Act can be found in Title 50 of the Code. For example, Section 4 explains the determinations of endangered species, provides for listing in the register, and planning for critical habitat planning. Section 6 in the code requires cooperation within the States and authorizes grants to states and landowners and Section 7 requires interagency cooperation, in which federal agencies are required to avoid jeopardizing or modifying the habitat of listed species. Section 9 prohibits the “take” or killing of a listed species and section 10 provides exceptions to the take prohibitions of Section 9. Then we have section 11, which explains penalties and enforcement of illegal “take” of a listed species and citizen suit provisions. (Matsumoto, 2003)

In Texas, endangered plants and animals are protected under the authority of State law through the Texas Parks and Wildlife and/or under federal law with the Endangered Species Act. Animals that are in trouble throughout its range, which may cover several states, are listed federally and are protected by the Endangered Species Act. (TPW, n. d.). Examples of animals included on the federal list are the black-capped vireo, the golden cheeked warbler, and the Texas poppy mallow. Endangered animals can also be listed on the state endangered list, which means they are only endangered within the Texas borders. Animals such as the Texas horned lizard and the Texas Kangaroo Rat are protected under state law. The protection of ecosystems is extremely important and extinction of plants and animals points to more significant problems in the environment. Our ecosystem is like a spider web, where each strand in the web are held together by animals, plants, nutrients, water, and air. When strands are taken away, it weakens the web until it eventually falls apart. The fact is, we have already lost the majority of the large animals in Texas, but with the Landowner Incentive Program , Texas Parks and Wildlife gives grants to landowners to encourage the protection of state and federally listed species.

There are many benefits to the Endangered Species Act. The ESA has protected the bald eagle, the California condor, and the Florida manatee, among others. According to “Defenders of Wildlife” (n. d.), “less than one percent of the more than 2,000 plants and animals protected by the Act worldwide have ever been formerly delisted due to extinction”. The Endangered Species Act benefits people by maintaining natural systems that provide us with water, food, clean air, and medicine. It also helps preserve the aesthetics of the environment by preserving the experience of seeing species roaming in their natural habitat. While most people support the conservation of species, there are many that feel restrictions on land use of protected habitats has a negative impact on businesses and tourism, resulting in loss of jobs.

Growing population means more land is needed to support that growth, restricted land use means less property for urbanization or industrial growth. Also, many of the listed endangered species occur on private land, restricting the landowner’s use of their own property. Cost is another source of conflict with the Endangered Species Act. Large amounts of money are spent in order to aid in the recovery of endangered animals, an example of this would be with the recovery of the California condor. Tens of millions of dollars have been spent on recovery programs in the past 2-3 decades and currently, five million every year is spent in aiding their recovery.

I believe the Endangered Species Act contains laws that are adequate to achieve its conservation purpose. Laws are in place to protect species on the verge of extinction and because of the protection from the ESA, iconic species such as bald eagles, gray wolves and grizzly bears were able rebound and recover. Without the ESA we could potentially lose species that are vital to our ecosystem and our existence

Endangered Species

David Byerly Mrs. Taylor English 1010 9a. m. Explanation Essay 26 Sept. 2011 Endangered Species: Watching them Disappear Earth has roughly 40 million species right now. Earth has held 10 times that many animals since its inception. Of that 40 million, 99 percent of the species on the planet have gone extinct (Acherman xii-xiii). With only a fraction of the species on the planet that have ever existed it is important to keep the ones that we have. Before a species is completely wiped out, it is called an Endangered Species. People have noticed over the years the animals disappearing but Endangered Species is a relatively new term.

Endangered Species will never recover with the lack of classification, protection and destruction of habitat. Endangered Species is a group of animals that faces a high risk of extinction in the wild in the near future (Audesirk 616). Endangered Species are classified into seven different specific categories which are extinct, extinct in wild, critically endangered, endangered, vulnerable, near threatened and least concern. Extinct species are species that are no longer alive on the planet like Dinosaurs. Extinct in wild species only live in captivity like the Wyoming Toad that only survives in zoos and laboratories.

The critically endangered species are those with extremely high risk of extinction in immediate future like the Sea Turtle. Endangered species are classified as species with high risk extinction in the near future like the Blue Whale. Vulnerable species are those that have a high risk of extinction in medium term like the African Elephant. The near threatened species are species that may be threatened in near future like the Magellanic Penguin. The last category of endangered species is those of the least concern which are the species with no immediate threat to survival of species like the Bald Eagle.

Scientist feel that the three in the middle (Critically Endangered, Endangered, and Vulnerable) are threatened. Scientists made a list of these three categories called the red list. All of the animals on the red list are protected by law. In May of 2000 there were 1789 total species on the red list protected worldwide. The protected animals numbered 1051 and the protected plants numbered 738 (Defenders of Wildlife). There are still a lot of animals world-wide that still have not been classified into the above categories.

To assess the conservation status of a species scientist must know the change in population (increase or decrease), the percent of breeding success and the known threats. To classify species into these groups scientists and researchers need the funding, time to study the species in the field, and people to help. Realizing that animal, plant and insect populations were decreasing worldwide, scientists came together at the first major international conference in 1972 called the Stockholm Conference. Of the attending countries 96 percent established environmental protection agency’s (EPA).

These were to be government funded agencies to study the wildlife and habitats in their countries. A few examples are the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the US Fish & Wildlife. The largest agency today is the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). This agency consists of 200 government agencies, 800 conservation related organizations, and 11,000 Scientists and experts in over 160 different countries (Audesirk 586). Afterwards in 1973 congress passed the Endangered Species Act which stated: Authorizes the determination and listing of species. Endangered or Threatened) Prohibits unauthorized taking, possession, sale, and transport of Endangered Species. Provides authority to acquire land for conservation of listed species. Authorizes establishment BLM and for US Fish & Wildlife. Authorizes civil and criminal penalties for violating acts. Authorizes payment and rewards for information leading to the arrest and conviction for violation of this act, (Defenders of Wildlife ). Until recently the general public has never really paid much attention to the impact they have on the environment.

New York Harbor has been one of the busiest and dirtiest harbors in the United States since the early 1900’s. Until the mid-1980’s it was dumped in two places of the coast of New Jersey called the “Mud Dump” and the “Twelve Mile Sewage Sledge. ” In March of 1987 seven hundred and fifty Bottlenose Dolphins washed ashore along the eastern sea coast. The Dolphin exhibited respiratory trouble and had lesions along their bodies. Scientists didn’t know how to explain this so they tested the water and traced the problem to these areas.

In the Mud Dump scientist found enough dredge materials from the harbor to fill three World Trade Center towers for each year since 1983. In the Twelve Mile Sewage Sledge scientists found 166 billion pounds of wet sludge in 80 feet of water (Caldara 34). That could be spread out over the whole state of Wyoming. After the reports were out this outrage threw Endangered Species and Conservation into the public eye. People had no idea this amount of abuse and destruction was happening to the Earth. In September of 2011, there are 20,123 total endangered species on the red list worldwide.

There are 10,801 protected animals and 9,322 protected plants (Defenders of Wildlife). Although things have been done to address this problem many people are left wondering are they too late to save the animals. Species on the red list have grown to ten times the number on the red list of endangered species in May of 2000. Over the last 500 years the extinction rate has been one species per year. Without changes being made all that is left to wonder is what is the next Endanger Species to become extinct? (word count is 913) Work Cited Acherman, Diane.