The Administration is taking another bite out of the Endangered Species Act by proposing carve-outs, exceptions to habitat protection based on balancing other things like, well, you know, development! Washing over this with talk of schools and wildfire prevention we know this is just a veneer. And how would they measure whether the impact would not lead to species’ extinction? Do you believe they have the means or the will to figure that out and follow through if it is even possible to obtain protection when a piece of a species habitat is missing?
“Section 4(b)(2) of the ESA gives the Secretary of the Interior the authority to exclude any particular area from a critical habitat designation if the benefits of exclusion outweigh the benefits of inclusion for that area, so long as excluding the habitat will not result in the species’ extinction.
The proposed rule provides the framework for how the Service will take into consideration the economic impact, impact on national security and other relevant impacts of designating critical habitat. Additionally, the proposed regulations would provide categories of “other relevant impacts” that the Service may consider, including public health and safety, community interests and the environment, such as increased risk of wildfire or pest and invasive species management.” https://www.fws.gov/news/ShowNews.cfm?ref=proposal-clarifies-critical-habitat-designations-&_ID=36764