The Trump administration is looking at ways to curb the sale of banned chickens, deer antlers and a whole lot more that may be bad for the environment in the country’s record sales of federal lands, a first for a major party, Politico reports.
The names of items the Bureau of Land Management is reviewing for possible regulation make for rather alarming reading: ergot, mountain lion pelts, red wolf eggs, diamondback rattlesnakes, four-head chowchins, muzzleloader pellets, wood ticks, grizzly bear antlers, deer antlers, and a wide variety of dried and pulverized dried red snake eggs.
Even the certainties don’t make it seem any less ominous. A selection of the DOI products that are likely to be eligible for regulation does include cars bought by the EPA, legislative hammers made with red pheasant eggs, a signature 2014 Jason Derulo album cover, a spring climbing vest, and a set of work-release jewelry made of a bison toothpick from the state of Washington.
For their part, BLM officials maintain that they are simply keeping an eye on an array of over-the-counter miscellaneous items that can potentially damage wildlife habitat. “[W]e are using this rule to clarify our zero tolerance policy for those products and will consider further rulemaking, including banning these products outright if they can be shown to cause significant harm to waterfowl or other wildlife,” the BLM posted in a Wednesday regulatory filing.
Agency officials concede, however, that the number of items under review is nowhere near the range of 10,000,000 available on the BLM marketplace, with which the agency hopes to see the sale of faux-monarch butterflies reduced, a feat that may prove tough to achieve given the strength of the Obama administration’s rule that limited the sales.
Still, the Obama administration’s 2014 rule was controversial, spawning a lengthy public backlash against what critics saw as an overreach of their ability to write and enforce their own rules.
An unnamed BLM source told Politico that the latest round of inquiries has also put “a ton of pressure” on the bureau to revise their rule as quickly as possible before the Trump administration changes the rules yet again.
The number of items being reviewed is up significantly from the number being reviewed prior to Trump’s presidency, according to Politico. “Because the rules under review were published for public comment prior to the election, a green light was not given. But the Trump administration has made it clear it intends to work around the Environmental Protection Agency, a decision that may lead to a rule-making barrage by the BLM if the agency is unable to navigate the process swiftly.”
Read the full story at Politico.
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