WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senate Western Caucus Chair Cynthia Lummis (R-WY) joined Senate Western Caucus Members Jim Risch and Mike Crapo (both R-ID) in sending a letter to Senate leadership urging the continued Endangered Species Act (ESA) listing prohibition for the greater sage-grouse. Keeping the greater sage-grouse off the endangered species list allows science-based, state-led plans to continue benefitting the species in a tailored and measurable way that does not overreach on the lives of landowners and businesses out west.
“Each of the eleven western states which hold sage-grouse habitat have adopted their own collaborative, science-based conservation plans, tailored specifically to address localized landscape needs and recover the species,” the senators said. “Despite this transparent and scientific approach, the greater sage-grouse has constantly been the subject of continuous litigation and baseless, counterproductive listing petitions for years.”
The letter was also signed by Senators John Barrasso (R-WY), John Hoeven (R-ND), Kevin Cramer (R-ND), Steve Daines (R-MT), Mitt Romney (R-UT) and Mike Lee (R-UT), all members of the Senate Western Caucus.
The letter can be found here.
Without an ESA listing prohibition, the greater sage-grouse remains subject to a cycle of activist litigation that costs taxpayers and undermines states’ conservation efforts. In an effort to combat this, a listing prohibition has been included in every annual appropriations bill since Fiscal Year 2015 to allow state conservation efforts to proceed.
Senator Lummis led ten of her colleagues in sending a letter in July to Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior, Environment and Related Agencies Chairman Jeff Merkley (D-OR) and Ranking Member Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) requesting that the subcommittee take action on five major issues that significantly impact the economic and environmental well-being of the west, including to continue the prohibition on the greater sage-grouse listing.