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Photo: Bob Wick, Bureau of Land Management, via The New York Times
Late last week, the Trump Administration announced its decision to open up for oil and gas drilling nine millions of acres of critical habitat for the Sage Grouse, a bird whose endangered status hinged on whether the habitat would be saved. According to The New York Times, the plan to eliminate protections on the Sage Grouse habitat was engineered by the Acting Secretary of Interior, David Berhnardt, a former oil and gas industry lobbyist, who has now been nominated to fill the top job permanently.
Why This Matters: As Juliet Elperin of The Post said, in a tweet, the “sage grouse lives nowhere else besides America, and it could disappear altogether. As the Trump Administration makes it easier to drill in the bird’s habitat, can environmentalists save it?” The battle will now surely shift to the courts as these groups will have to sue to force the Trump Administration to list the sage grouse as endangered, but even then the leasing might already have taken place — it may be too late. The Obama Administration’s “compromise” was controversial at the time, and now puts the bird’s existence in jeopardy — hindsight is, of course, 20/20.
by Ashira Morris, ODP Staff Writer As the world warms, it’s not just people who are feeling the heat. Bats are also susceptible to extreme heat, and overheated bat boxes can be “a death trap,” the Guardian reports. In the wild, bats move between rock and tree crevices in search of a perfectly moderated temperature. […]
by Natasha Lasky, ODP Staff Writer A new report entitled The World’s Forgotten Fishes from the World Wildlife Fund has found that there has been a “catastrophic” decline in freshwater fish, with nearly a third of all freshwater fish species coming perilously close to extinction. The statistics paint a sobering picture: 26% of all critically […]
by Amy Lupica, ODP Staff Writer Move over Dolly, there’s a new clone in town and her name is Elizabeth Ann the Black-Footed ferret. You read that right; the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) announced on Thursday that it had successfully cloned the first U.S. endangered species. Elizabeth Ann was born on December 10, […]
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