May 8, 2009

Polar Bear 4(d) rule to remain in place

By Damien M. Schiff Senior Attorney

Secretary Salazar announced today that the Service will be retaining the rule.  Here is PLF's press release:

U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar announced today that his department will keep in place a regulation that attempts to limit the adverse economic impact of the Endangered Species Act listing of the polar bear. Under the regulation, only economic projects in Alaska — not in the lower 48 states — are reviewed for possible impact on the polar bear through generation of CO2.

Pacific Legal Foundation attorneys are currently challenging the polar bear ESA listing in federal court, and PLF Principal Attorney Reed Hopper issued this statement about Salazar’s announcement today:

"In a welcome show of common sense, the administration acknowledged the polar bear is adequately protected under a range of existing laws, without the need to regulate CO2 and other greenhouse gases in the lower 48 states. The administration apparently realizes that you can’t stimulate the economy if job-creating projects throughout the country are held hostage to heavy-handed environmental regulation."

"Nevertheless, Pacific Legal Foundation attorneys will continue to press the legal case for overturning the ESA listing of the polar bear, because under the science — for instance, the fact that there are more polar bears in the arctic today than any time on record — it is fundamentally unjustified."

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