260 pages, 26 b/w photos and illustrations, 17 tables
Now forty years old, the Endangered Species Act (ESA) remains a landmark act in conservation and one of the world's most comprehensive laws designed to prevent species extinctions and support recovery efforts for imperiled species. A controversial law and often subject to political attack, the ESA is successful overall but not without difficulties. Those who enforce the ESA, for example, struggle to achieve viable recovery goals for many species.
At the forefront of challenges is a reactive framework that sometimes leads to perverse incentives and legal battles that strain support and resources. Further, few species have been delisted. Proactive Strategies for Protecting Species explores the perspectives, opportunities, and challenges around designing and implementing pre-listing programs and approaches to species conservation.
Proactive Strategies for Protecting Species brings together conservation biologists, economists, private and government stakeholders, and others to create a legal, scientific, sociological, financial, and technological foundation for designing solutions that incentivize conservation action for hundreds of at-risk species – prior to their potential listing under the ESA.
This forward-thinking, innovative volume provides a roadmap for designing species conservation programs on the ground so they are effective and take place upstream of regulation, which will contribute to a reduction in lawsuits and other expenses that arise after a species is listed. Proactive Strategies for Species Protection is a guidebook for anyone anywhere interested in designing programs that incentivize environmental stewardship and species conservation.
"This book is an invitation to innovation, bristling with fresh ideas. Some suggestions may not work; others will surely move us forward. A must-read for those who are rethinking the future of the Endangered Species Act."
– Bruce Babbitt, former United States Secretary of the Interior
"This is the first book I have seen that makes a real attempt to suggest ways to outflank the Endangered Species Act so that species preservation actually happens."
– Randy Simmons, Utah State University, and coauthor of Wilderness and Political Ecology
"For those who agree that incurring the cost of upstream conservation is preferable to waiting for the Endangered Species Act to sound the alarm of pending species endangerment, this primer provides an important and pragmatic guide while also promoting responsible stewardship of the incredible natural resources entrusted to our care."
– Jamie Rappaport Clark, Executive Director, Defenders of Wildlife
"There's a big idea at the heart of this book – the kind of big idea that promises to transform how we conduct the business of species and habitat conservation. Everyone wins when the public and private sectors work together to sustain wildlife and natural resources through the use of proactive incentives instead of only relying on regulation. These types of approaches are at the foundation of environmental health, economic opportunity, and cross-sectorial cooperation."
– Craig Hanson, Global Director of Food, Forests & Water at the World Resources Institute
"Donlan and his contributors have captured an essential insight: conservation works best when we take early and sustained action to protect species and ecosystems. This book will serve as an indispensable guide for those who want not only to save endangered species, but also to prevent those species from becoming endangered in the first place."
– Peter Alagona, UC Santa Barbara, and author of After the Grizzly: Endangered Species and the Politics of Place in California
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C. Josh Donlan is director and founder of Advanced Conservation Strategies, an organization that makes livelihoods and environments better through science, human-centered design, and innovation. He is a recipient of Fulbright and Guggenheim fellowships and has published over eighty scientific and public articles in venues such as Nature, Conservation Biology, and PNAS.