Greater Sage Grouse Protections Hatching Lawsuits
The Obama administration’s greater sage grouse protection plan has spawned multiple lawsuits. The administration’s plan to protect the sage grouse, while avoiding listing the ground-dwelling bird as “endangered” under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), places strict limits on the use of more than 180 million acres of federal, state, and private lands which covers 11 Western states. The article cites a study conducted by the Western Energy Alliance (WEA) which estimates the sage grouse restrictions will result in estimated job losses totaling 9,170–18,250. The WEA also estimates the restrictions will reduce economic growth by $2.435 billion to $4.847 billion in the four main states affected: Colorado, Montana, Utah, and Wyoming. The Administration’s plan will cost jobs and revenue, harm American consumers, and even decrease the quality of privately owned land for sage grouse breeding.