Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Defenders of Wildlife v. Jewell, No. 14-5284 (D.C. Cir. 2016)

Appellants filed suit challenging the Service's withdrawal of its 2010 proposal to list the dunes sagebrush lizard, whose habitat is in New Mexico and Texas, as endangered. Between the time the Service proposed listing the lizard and the time it decided to withdraw that proposal, the Service received updated information about the conservation efforts in the two States and by the Bureau of Land Management in New Mexico. Based on this information, the Service concluded that “current and future threats are not of sufficient imminence, intensity, or magnitude to indicate that the . . . lizard is in danger of extinction (endangered), or likely to become endangered within the foreseeable future (threatened), throughout all or a significant portion of its range.” The court concluded that appellants failed to show the Service did not rationally apply its policy in evaluating the Texas plan inasmuch as the Service’s factual conclusions are supported by substantial evidence in the record. Accordingly, the court affirmed the judgment. Download PDF

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