Bishop: Sage Grouse Decision Is De Facto Listing Aimed at Controlling the West
September 22, 2015
House Committee on Natural Resources Chairman Rob Bishop (R-UT) today issued the following statement in response to the Obama Administration’s decision on the greater sage grouse.
“Do not be fooled. The announcement not to list the sage grouse is a cynical ploy. With the stroke of a pen, the Obama Administration’s oppressive land management plan is the same as a listing. Now, successful conservation done at the state level will be in vain. The new command and control federal plan will not help the bird, but it will control the West, which is the real goal of the Obama Administration. Some Western governors see this for what it is and I will work with them to ensure the rational plans created at the grassroots level that solve the problem will be the way forward to protect this bird."
- In 2011, as part of a “mega-settlement” with the WildEarth Guardians, the Department of the Interior (DOI) agreed to review the status of hundreds of candidate species, including the Sage Grouse. DOI was under a court-ordered September 30, 2015 deadline to make the resource management plans leading to its final listing determination.
These 98 Bureau of Land Management (BLM) land management plans, which rarely are ever amended, will regulate energy, agricultural, and other economic activities on hundreds of millions of acres in Western states, restricting local, tribal, state and private property owners use of their own lands as BLM dictates.
The measures announced today in the BLM’s plans cater to the Interior Department’s arbitrary, court settlement deadlines negotiated with litigious groups as opposed to transparent data, actual scientific or effective conservation.
The Committee will hold a full committee hearing entitled “Respecting State Authority, Responsibilities and Expertise Regarding Resource Management and Energy Development” on September 30th.