WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Senator John Barrasso (R-WY), chairman of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works (EPW), joined with committee ranking member Sen. Tom Carper (D-DE), to reintroduce S. 268, the Wildlife Innovation and Longevity Driver (WILD) Act. Wildlife conservation groups are voicing their support for the WILD Act.

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.

What They Are Saying About the WILD Act:

“The National Wildlife Federation believes that collaborative conservation and innovation are essential to ensuring that wildlife thrive in our rapidly changing world,” said Collin O’Mara, CEO of the National Wildlife Federation. “We are proud to support the WILD Act, sponsored by Chairman Barrasso and Ranking Member Carper — as well as Rep. Lowenthal and Rep. Young — which will spur unprecedented conservation partnerships and unleash innovation to overcome some of the greatest threats facing wildlife.”

“The WILD Act will advance the cause of wildlife conservation, both in the United States and around the world,” said Carter Roberts, president and CEO of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF). “This bipartisan bill will catalyze innovative solutions to combat wildlife trafficking and improve wildlife management. And it reauthorizes critical U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service programs that help developing countries protect their wildlife while creating economic opportunities around conservation. The Senate unanimously approved the WILD Act in 2017, and we encourage the House to move quickly to advance this important legislation and score an early win for wildlife in the 116th Congress.”

“This bipartisan legislation will strengthen wildlife populations and promote conservation across the country,” said Whit Fosburgh, president and CEO of the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership. “This bill supports our nation’s robust hunting and fishing economy by reauthorizing important conservation initiatives such as the Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program and advancing new initiatives to tackle invasive species. We want to thank Chairman Barrasso and Ranking Member Carper for working together to push this bill forward.”

“The need for conservation support remains great, and we appreciate the sponsors of the WILD Act for their leadership,” said Cristián Samper, president and CEO of the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS). “Elephant populations are plummeting due to ivory trafficking, great ape populations are being decimated due to habitat destruction and the bushmeat trade, and tigers currently occupy only seven percent of their historical range. Marine turtle species and rhinos continue to be poached and traded to the brink of extinction, and freshwater turtles and tortoises are in danger as well. I hope Congress will quickly take up and pass this bipartisan bill.”

Conservation Groups that support the WILD Act Include:

National Wildlife Federation

World Wildlife Fund

Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership

Wildlife Conservation Society

Family Farm Alliance

Association of Zoos and Aquariums

Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation

National Wildlife Refuge Association

International Fund for Animal Welfare

Conservation International

Cheetah Conservation Fund

Izaak Walton League of America

Pheasants Forever

Quail Forever

Background Information:

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).

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 endangered species such as elephants, great apes, turtles, tigers, and others;
  • 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.