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The U.S. Supreme Court today declined to hear a last‐ditch effort by the State of Alaska to exempt America’s largest national forest from a national rule protecting undeveloped, road‐free national forest areas from logging and road construction. The State sought to overturn a Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruling that kept the Roadless Area Conservation Rule in effect in the vast Tongass National Forest in Southeast Alaska. The Ninth Circuit agreed with a federal District Court in Alaska that the Bush administration improperly exempted the Tongass from that landmark conservation measure.
Conservationists today filed a legal challenge to the National Park Service’s decision to reverse a long-standing agency policy by giving the State of Wyoming wildlife management authority on private and state inholdings inside Grand Teton National Park. The decision has already led to the killing of bison within park boundaries and exposes a host of park wildlife, including coyotes and foxes, to unregulated killing as vermin under state law.
Defenders of Wildlife, The Sierra Club and Santa Clara Valley Audubon Society brought a lawsuit in California state superior court yesterday to set aside the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW)’s Incidental Take Permit (ITP) for the Panoche Valley Solar Project. The Panoche Valley Solar Project is owned by Renewable Energy Trust and ConEdison Development Company, an unregulated subsidiary of the New York utility, Consolidated Edison. The case concerns a massive development project in an irreplaceable area of significant ecological importance critical to the survival and recovery of highly endangered species, including the blunt-nosed leopard lizard and the giant kangaroo rat. The conservation partners are asking the court to set aside the permit, because CDFW violated both California’s Endangered Species Act and the state’s fully protected species laws when it issued a permit for a project that would harm blunt-nosed leopard lizards as well as harm almost 1,000 giant kangaroo rats, a species that has declined drastically over the last few years.
Defenders of Wildlife Calls on Senate to Consider Supreme Court Nominee Merrick Garland
Eight members of Congress will be recognized today by leading national conservation groups for their critical role in protecting the Endangered Species Act.
A new poll released at the fourth Gunnison Sage-Grouse Summit today shows that a majority of voters (66 percent) from across the political spectrum who live in the heart of the Gunnison sage-grouse range support protecting the iconic bird as “threatened” under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) until they are fully recovered. By a margin of more than 3-to-1, two-thirds (67 percent) of voters in the four-county area believe listing the Gunnison sage-grouse as threatened under the ESA has encouraged local efforts to conserve these iconic birds.
Defenders of Wildlife is closely reviewing the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s proposal announced today to delist the population of grizzlies in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem under the Endangered Species Act and assessing the extent to which long-standing threats to the population have been adequately addressed.
A bill that would legislatively delist wolves – and open the door for the legislature to make politically driven decisions about the fate of imperiled animals across Oregon -- was passed yesterday evening by the Oregon legislature and will now go to Governor Brown for her consideration.
Today, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (the Service) agreed to complete a final recovery plan for the giant garter snake by September 29, 2017.
Oregon’s emphasis on proactive and nonlethal wolf management has helped allow the state’s small wolf population to increase by 36 percent this year, according to the annual population count released this week.