Jeff Aardahl

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California Representative

Jeff Aardahl, California RepresentativeAreas of Expertise:  California desert, desert tortoise, Mohave ground squirrel, desert bighorn, Endangered Species Act, Federal Land Policy and Management Act, National Environmental Policy Act, NPS Organic Act, public land management policy

Jeff's work as the California Representative focuses on California desert issues related to renewable energy development. He will work closely with staff from Defenders of Wildlife, California Department of Fish and Game, California Energy Commission, Bureau of Land Management, and Fish and Wildlife Service in the environmental review process for individual energy project proposals, and in developing a long-range conservation plan associated with renewable energy development in the California desert. Defenders supports renewable energy development that is done in an environmentally responsible manner that results in the protection and long-term viability of native species and their habitats, as well as recovery of listed and at-risk species.

Jeff retired from Federal service in 2005 after a 30+ year career as wildlife biologist, environmental coordinator, and natural and cultural resources staff supervisor. After finishing military service with the Army, he began his career in 1974 working for the Bureau of Land Management in the California Desert Planning Program. Most of his career was with the Bureau of Land Management in the California Desert as wildlife biologist and staff supervisor in Ridgecrest and Barstow Field Offices. He worked in the Washington, D.C. office of the Bureau for three years as a wildlife biologist in the special status species management program. Jeff also worked for the National Park Service at Death Valley National Park for six years at the Chief of the Resources Management Division.

Jeff has an Associate degree in forestry from Pasadena City College and a Bachelor degree in wildlife management from Humboldt State University in California.

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Desert Tortoise, Photo: Justin Ennis / Flickr user Averain
Defenders Event
Attend this public meeting to discuss the future of the Mojave Trails, Sand to Snow and Castle Mountains as national monuments. This is your only chance to tell the Obama administration, in person, how important the California Desert is to you.
bighorn sheep, © David Lamfrom
How You Can Help
We’re turning to President Obama to ask him to permanently protect 1.3 million acres of vital desert lands by designating the Sand to Snow, Castle Mountains and the Mojave Trails including the Pisgah Valley as national monuments!
Mohave Ground Squirrel, © Dr. Phil Leitner
The Mohave ground squirrel is one of the more elusive animals of the California desert.