Governor Healey Signs Executive Order To Protect State’s Wildlife And Ecosystems

HYANNIS – Governor Maura Healey recently signed an executive order to address challenges facing wildlife and plant life in the state.

The order called on the Commissioner of the Department of Fish and Game to take bolder steps to reverse the loss of a variety of species and habitats in Massachusetts, an order extending to policy changes and conservation investment targets related to land protection in an effort to give species a “foothold on survival”.

The order prompted a response from Kelsey Lamp, Director of Environmental Massachusetts’ Protect Our Oceans Campaign.

“From the massive North Atlantic right whale off our coast to the small, buzzing American bumblebee, too many are struggling to gain a foothold on survival. It’s a global problem that we’re also witnessing here in Massachusetts,” said Lamp.

“We can’t retroactively fix extinction,” she said, “but we can take steps now to protect what’s left of our natural world. That’s why it’s great to see Governor Healey’s biodiversity pledge and the series of conservation goals in it.”

Although the Massachusetts Endangered Species Act protects 432 plant and animal species in the state, researchers estimate that 40% of animals and 34% of plant species in the US are at risk of extinction.

The order corresponds with a greater statewide effort to protect the state’s natural resources, coming alongside an announcement by Healey that state agencies will no longer be allowed to buy single-use plastic water bottles in a measure to reduce pollution on the state’s coastlines, and a series of grant awards to return aged cranberry bogs to functional wetlands.

By, Matthew Tomlinson, NewsCenter

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