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Policy & Legislation

The Xerces Society, Center for Food Safety, and Defenders of Wildlife, represented by Stanford Environmental Law Clinic, announced they are appealing a November 2020 decision by the Sacramento County Superior Court that determined that the California Fish and Game Commission lacks authority to list four threatened bumble bee species as candidate species under the California Endangered Species Act.
The Xerces Society today announced that only 1,914 monarch butterflies were recorded overwintering on the California coast this year. This critically low number follows two years with fewer than 30,000 butterflies—the previous record lows—indicating that the western monarch butterfly migration is nearing collapse. In only a few decades, a migration of millions has been reduced to less than two thousand butterflies.
On Tuesday, 12/15/20, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced that listing the monarch butterfly under the Endangered Species Act is warranted, but precluded by other priorities. This decision does not provide the protection that monarchs, and especially the western population, so desperately need to recover.
A group of health and environmental organizations filed a legal petition today, calling upon the California Department of Pesticide Regulation to regulate the planting of crop seeds coated with neurotoxic neonicotinoid insecticides (neonics) and close a loophole that allows the unchecked use of neonic-treated seeds in California’s farms. The petition follows a scientific report released today finding these seeds may result in the use of over half a million pounds of unregulated pesticides per year in the state. 
As the Environmental Protection Agency prepares to determine whether to renew dicamba product registrations for the 2021 growing season, a new report details how the herbicides pose serious threats to wild plants and the wildlife that depend upon them. The report from the National Wildlife Federation, Prairie Rivers Network and the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation, Drifting Toward Disaster: How Dicamba Herbicides are Harming Cultivated and Wild Landscapes, reviews the state of the science on the potential far-reaching impacts of dicamba use.
More than 15 years after the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation initially submitted a petition asking for federal protection for the island marble, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) announced today that the butterfly warrants protection as an endangered species under the Endangered Species Act.