Original Press Release
NAM Says Proposed Overturn of Interior Rule Will Delay Energy Development, Construction
Press release date: March 3, 2009
Business Group Sees Contradiction With Stimulus Legislation
WASHINGTON, D.C., March 3, 2009 -The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) today urged federal policymakers not to overturn a U.S. Department of the Interior rule that streamlines procedures under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) in order to expedite badly-needed energy development and construction projects.
The NAM statement came in response to an announcement earlier today by President Barack Obama that he opposes the Interior rule in question that was adopted last December. The President made the comment during an event at the Department of Interior celebrating the agency's 160th Anniversary.
"This decision, if carried out, would appear to work against the job creation goals of the recently-signed stimulus legislation," said Keith McCoy, NAM Vice President of Energy and Resources Policy. "Reinstating bureaucratic hurdles will only delay energy development and other construction projects which help create jobs."
The Department of Interior rule, finalized in December 2008, removed the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service from a review process of development projects initiated by other federal agencies. It does not, however, shield a federal agency from liability for posing dangers to ESA-protected wildlife in the event the agency's independent judgment proves inadequate to carry out the law's provisions.
"In a time of serious economic crisis, it is more important than ever that we move forward with energy development and construction wherever feasible," McCoy said. "The inevitable result of upending this Interior rule will be to delay and possibly deny badly-needed development projects. This will not stimulate economic growth, it will undermine it. The NAM looks forward to working with the Obama Administration and members of Congress to implement federal policies that promote economic expansion while protecting environmental quality and health, including the health of manufacturing workers and their families."
The National Association of Manufacturers is the nation's largest industrial trade association, representing small and large manufacturers in every industrial sector and in all 50 states. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., the NAM has 11 additional offices across the country. Visit the NAM's web site at www.nam.org for more information about manufacturing and the economy.