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Gunnison Sage-Grouse Endangered Species Act Litigation Documents 8-11-17

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By M. Reed Hopper

Designating non-habitat as "critical habitat?" Where does it stop?

In 2014, the US Fish and Wildlife Service listed the Gunnison sage-grouse as “threatened” under the Endangered Species Act and designated over 14 million acres as “critical habitat” in Colorado and Utah For years, the affected states, counties, and landowners have partnered to conserve the species while maintaining economic viability Over 90% of sage-grouse habitat in the State of Utah is found on private land Local landowners have provided 28,000 acres of their land for conservation management After the expenditure of over $18 million, these cooperative efforts have increased the primary bird population by 30% and exceeded the government-established recovery goal In combination with habitat areas that are

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By Brian T. Hodges

Decision stands in sage grouse case

Last February, Chief US District Judge B Lynn Winmill sustained the US Fish and Wildlife Service’s finding that listing the sage grouse under the Endangered Species Act was warranted, but precluded by more pressing projects  Today, the judge denied a motion by Western Watersheds Project and other environmental groups that sought to amend the February ruling  Today’s order means the February ruling—and the Service’s finding that listing the sage grouse is warranted-but-precluded—will stand

In order to uphold the Service’s decision, the court had to find that the Service was making “expeditious progress” on making a final determination to list or not list the sage grouse  The court ruled that the

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Alternatives to the Endangered Species Act forthcoming?

Author: Brandon Middleton

Ron Micheli, Republican candidate for the Wyoming governorship, wants states to come up with a better approach to wildlife management:

Micheli said federal influence on wildlife and land management is a "huge issue" and that "no issue affects Wyoming more"

America’s founders intended the states to be "incubators of new
ideas," he said, a role they have failed to fulfill in issues
ranging from health care to wildlife management to energy
development

"With cap-and-trade, we should be leading the charge," he
said

Micheli said federal wildlife managers eventually listing the
greater sage grouse as an endangered species "could shut down this
state"

The Endangered Species Act "needs a major overhaul" and Wyoming and
other "states need to offer

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