Photo: Protesters block tarsands in Cherokee County, Texas, in 2012 during the long struggle to halt the flow of tar sands oil from Alberta, Canada, to the U.S.
Unprecedented Lawsuit Launched: Trump's deranged authoritarianism reaches new levels in the destruction of the environment and fast-tracking dirty fuel development
Center for Biological Diversity
WASHINGTON— The Center for Biological Diversity filed a notice today of its intent to sue President Donald Trump for his recent executive order directing all federal agencies to exploit the Endangered Species Act’s emergency provisions to rubber-stamp the approval of fossil fuel pipelines, oil and gas drilling and other routine infrastructure projects.
The unprecedented legal action would mark the first time Trump has been sued for violating the Endangered Species Act, under which it’s illegal for any person to solicit — that is, cause another person to commit — an act that harms protected wildlife or plants.
Trump’s June 4 order directed all federal agencies to waive compliance with environmental laws to expedite infrastructure and other projects, including pipelines like Keystone XL and other fossil fuel infrastructure. The order requires every agency to claim emergency authority to approve as many infrastructure projects as possible within 30 days, regardless of potential harm to people or the environment.
“Trump’s authoritarianism seems to reach deranged new levels every week,” said Kierán Suckling, the Center’s executive director. “The president’s not above the law. Inciting federal agencies to violate the Endangered Species Act is part of a pattern he’s displayed throughout his presidency. He’s encouraging officials to ignore the rules and obey his whims.”