WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Senator John Barrasso (R-WY), chairman of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works (EPW), and committee ranking member Sen. Tom Carper (D-DE), released the following statements in response to President Trump signing the bipartisan Wildlife Innovation and Longevity Driver (WILD) Act into law.

The WILD Act was included in S. 47, the Natural Resources Management Act, which passed the Senate by a vote of 92 to 8. Barrasso and Carper worked to have the legislation included in the Natural Resources Management Act. On February 26, 2019, the legislation passed the House of Representatives by a vote of 363 to 62.

“This law will support wildlife conservation and protect some of the world’s rarest and most beloved animals,” said Barrasso. “The WILD Act will help innovators protect threatened wildlife, manage invasive species, and combat poaching across the globe. It is a wonderful example of how we can work across party lines to conserve wildlife. I want to thank Senator Carper for partnering with me to pass this important law."

“The United States ought to be a global leader in protecting our planet’s wildlife,” said Carper. “Species throughout the world continue to face an evolving set of challenges, and overcoming these will require new and advanced methods of conservation. By encouraging innovation in endangered species protection, better managing human-wildlife conflicts, and preventing poaching and wildlife trafficking, the WILD Act – now law – will help do just that. I’m proud of the bipartisan work that Chairman Barrasso and I put into seeing the WILD Act come to fruition, and I am pleased that we were able to help get this legislation to the president’s desk.”

Barrasso and Carper introduced the legislation. The WILD Act is also cosponsored by Sens. Jim Inhofe (R-OK), Cory Booker (D-NJ), John Boozman (R-AR), and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI). The bill passed the EPW committee by voice vote on February 5, 2019.

The WILD Act will promote wildlife conservation, assist in the management of invasive species, and help protect endangered species. The bipartisan legislation will reauthorize government conservation programs. It will also establish prize competitions to prevent illegal poaching and trafficking, manage invasives, promote conservation, and protect endangered wildlife. Companion legislation was introduced in the House of Representatives by Reps. Alan Lowenthal (CA-47-D) and Don Young (AK-1-R).

Specifically, the WILD Act will:

  • Reauthorize and fund the Department of the Interior’s Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program until fiscal year 2023;
  • Require federal agencies to implement strategic programs to control invasive species;
  • Reauthorize legislation to protect imperiled species such as elephants, great apes, turtles, tigers, and others until fiscal year 2023;
  • Establish monetary-prize competitions for technological innovation in the following categories:  
    • the prevention of wildlife poaching and trafficking;
    • the promotion of wildlife conservation;
    • the management of invasive species;
    • the non-lethal management of human-wildlife conflicts; and
    • the protection of endangered species.

To view full text of the legislation, click here.

Background Information:

On March 15, 2017, the EPW Committee held an oversight hearing on “Examining Innovative Solutions to Control Invasive Species and Promote Wildlife Conservation.”

Barrasso, Carper, Inhofe, Booker, Boozman, and Whitehouse originally introduced the WILD Act in the 115th Congress. The legislation passed the Senate in the 115th Congress as well.