PREDATORS Act establishes a Theodore Roosevelt Genius Prize for reducing human-predator conflict.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, U.S. Senators John Barrasso (R-WY), Tom Carper (D-DE), Kevin Cramer (R-ND), and Cory Booker (D-NJ) introduced S. 2194, Promoting Resourceful and Effective Deterrents Against Threats Or Risks involving Species (PREDATORS) Act. This legislation would establish a new Theodore Roosevelt Genius Prize for reducing human-predator conflict through innovative, non-lethal technologies. The Theodore Roosevelt Genius Prizes were established as part of The Wildlife Innovation and Longevity Driver (WILD) Act that became law earlier this year.
Barrasso and Carper are chairman and ranking member of the Committee on Environment and Public Works (EPW). Cramer and Booker are members of EPW. The committee will hold a legislative hearing on the PREDATORS Act on Wednesday, July 24.
“We can reduce rare but deadly conflicts between humans and wildlife predators,” said Barrasso. “In Wyoming, grizzly bear attacks have tragically resulted in severe injury and even death for hikers and hunters. Across the country, similar attacks by sharks, mountain lions, and alligators have had similar results. The bipartisan PREDATORS Act will encourage innovators to develop new technologies to reduce dangerous human-wildlife interactions. This legislation is another example of how we can work across party lines to help protect people and wildlife.”
“Conflicts between humans and predatory animals not only threaten public safety, but also endanger these species, which are critically important in their ecosystems,” said Carper. “More work can be done to make sure both humans and wildlife populations can live near one another without dangerous confrontations. This bipartisan bill is one step to foster innovation and advance the latest science and technology to reduce human-predator conflicts. I look forward to continuing to work together to address the fundamental drivers of human-predator conflicts, including habitat loss and climate change.”
“Western states often have to deal with the dangers and interference of wildlife,” said Cramer. “This legislation is meant to encourage innovative, nonlethal solutions to protect wildlife and local communities.”
“Climate change, habitat loss, and over-exploitation endanger many species of wildlife,” said Booker. “Due to these persistent pressures, it is important that we prioritize non-lethal options to prevent potential conflicts with humans. I look forward to continuing to work with my colleagues on solutions that protect our communities and wildlife.”
To read full text of the legislation, click here.
On March 12, 2019, President Trump signed the bipartisan Wildlife Innovation and Longevity Driver (WILD) Act into law. Among other things, the WILD Act established Theodore Roosevelt Genius Prizes to incentivize technological innovation in wildlife and invasive species conservation and management.
On February 13, 2019, the WILD Act passed the Senate as part of S.47, the Natural Resources Management Act, 92-8.
Barrasso, Carper, Booker, and several other committee members originally introduced the WILD Act in the 115th Congress. The legislation passed the Senate in the 115th Congress as well.