WASHINGTON (CNN) – The Obama administration is revoking a Bush-era regulation that officials say "undermined" the 1973 Endangered Species Act.
The decision by the Commerce and Interior Departments means federal agencies will once again be required to consult with federal wildlife experts at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration before taking action that might affect threatened or endangered species. Environmental groups had argued the Bush rule severely weakened the Endangered Species Act.
"By rolling back this eleventh-hour regulation, we are ensuring that threatened and endangered species continue to receive the full protection of the law," Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said in a written statement announcing the decision.
Last month, as part of the omnibus spending bill, Congress authorized the Commerce and Interior Departments to revoke the regulation.