Enviros to Bush: You stink!

President lambasted for his 11th-hour assault on the endangered species act

It didn’t seem conceivable that environmentalists could like George W. Bush any less before he leaves the White House in a few short months. But enviros have got to hand it to the 43rd president, who on his way out the door is attempting to bastardize the Endangered Species Act.

Last week, The Associated Press reported that his administration is considering changes to the law that would exempt thousands of federal activities from review. Currently, when it comes to determining whether a project is likey to harm an endangered species or habitat, federal agencies are required to consult with scientists from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service or the National Marine Fisheries Service.

Dirk Kempthorne, secretary of the Interior Department, countered that the changes were a way to keep the law from setting policy related to greenhouse-gas emissions. If adopted, the changes would apply to all projects funded, built or authorized by a federal agency.