Interior: Grouse listing warranted but precluded






  1. JB Avatar

    Interior is now regularly using “warranted but precluded” findings as a technique for delaying listings. This finding is not surprising given the controversial nature of this listing.

  2. kt Avatar

    If Salazar or Audubon think that an oil well and windmill every square mile will make any difference – they are dreamin’.

    The longer they delay, the harder it will be for them when it happens.

    I can’t wait to see how BLM-Interior handles its next really big decision. That is whether or not to issue the Ruby Pipeline right-of-way for El Paso Gas’s horribly destructive gas line. It would run right through one of their precious Wyoming core areas (and the ink isn’t even dry on that “corpse” area distraction). And it rips across 60 or more leks – including one of the largest blocks of remaining sagebrush habitat in the northern Black Rock country south of Sheldon.

    If BLM authorizes Ruby – it will be a Poster Child for why Listing is urgently needed.

  3. Ken Cole Avatar

    One of the things that is most concerning about this approach is that delaying listing for the most isolated populations, such as those in the Cambridge, Idaho, Mono Basin, and Washington State, is that these particular populations are teetering on the edge. Delaying listing of these populations is a death sentence for them and there is no excuse.

  4. Virginia Avatar

    Disgraceful! I wonder what those “higher priorities” might be.

    1. ProWolf in WY Avatar
      ProWolf in WY

      That’s what I would like to know as well.

  5. kt Avatar


    Investments of the Usual Suspects like the Carlyle Group in industrial wind farms, and investments at all levels – like Colorado and other Big Dems in industrial “renewables”, massive and massively destructive transmission projects, and the Ruby pipeline, etc.

    The next big bubble – the Carbon Bubble – involves trying to do the Interior West with Industrial Renewables what Oil and Gas did in Wyoming. And the Big Developers betting and speculating on that and scamming taxpayers for all the federal handouts they can get.

  6. kt Avatar

    Salazar and Audubon are going to “WOW” the world with maps of where grouse are claimed to be thriving. Too bad no one will be telling the grouse.

    And: What is going to be really interesting is how the cowboy-hatted Audubon grouse mappers who’ve done all the schmoozing in Wyoming are likely to run afoul of various state game agencies.

    i think Interior thinks they can use Audubon to hide info, and prevent ready public access to info, on sage-grouse. Harder to do FOIAs, public is likely to be provided with much-massaged and inconclusive info, and pathetic recommendations – and “corpse areas” that write off important habitat to development

    Some of the state game agencies are already completely paranoia about the public having access to basic grouse numbers info.

    I’m just waiting for the feathers to fly when Audubon does something with a state’s data for BLM purposes that the state fellows don’t like.

  7. Robert Hoskins Avatar
    Robert Hoskins


    Well, this is really what we expected, isn’t it? The brass tack question is–when is the lawsuit?


  8. JimT Avatar

    Ask Western Watersheds or Center for Biological Diversity. I would foresee a targeted suit for those populations in serious trouble…and I would like to see an effort by BLM to replant sage instead of non native grasses…

  9. JB Avatar

    I haven’t yet read the Final Rule, but this might be a good candidate for formally challenging the Solicitor’s memorandum on the “significant portion of its range” phrase.

  10. timz Avatar

    In the midst of all this promised “hope and change” the environment continues to take a beating. I’m not even holding out hope any longer that Malloy will re-list the wolf.

  11. JimT Avatar

    Don’t be throwing negative waves out there towards Malloy..he is the best hope that we and the wolves have right now.

  12. timz Avatar

    Can’t help it. The hunting decision, followed by the helicopter ruling has left me a little nervous.

  13. kt Avatar

    Rancher Salazar is responsible for allowing the de-listing to stay in place. The New York Times has a sappy piece on the sage-grouse Listing about him being middle of the road, or something. No! He’s just like the Bushies. Only with him, there is no leadership in the agencies, no clear agenda except muddling along. BLM is just adrift … nothing has changed except amped up “renewables” destruction for “Sally’s” Colorado energy buddies and various financial sharks.

    AND he is responsible for the continued persecution of Tim DiChristopher.

  14. Devin Avatar

    When I heard this I immediately thought it was politics over science and I wonder if:

    1. By not listing the grouse, the Obama administration and the DOI are attempting to appease a growing sagebrush movement in the western states and all of the industry money backing it?

    and if

    2. the US is giving the states and other interest groups who would rather die than see the bird listed (aka Big Ag) their final notice that if they can’t fix this problem on their own, the federal gorilla in the closet will be released and take control?

    and if

    3. this ruling cement what many of us were thinking: the only CHANGE to public lands policy that Obama has is that now alternative energy like windmills and solar panels have replaced the oil drilling policies that Bush was so fond of….wildlife getting the raw end of the deal?

    Any thoughts?

  15. kt Avatar

    Devin: Here is my take. Salazar is a seamless extension of the Bush years – only much more hyped up on industrial wind and solar.

    The wind development is going to destroy some of the last best remote sagebrush places that no one thought would ever be developed.

    Plus the Colorado cabal (and Carl Pope’s of the world) that Salazar fronts for is way big on “natural gas a bridge fuel”. Hence we see huge new gas development proposals sprawling across the western states like the Ruby pipeline. And BLM sits back and contemplates its navel letting any and all industry run over it. I’m sorry for even bringing up that a scary thought. BLM contemplating its navel …

  16. william huard Avatar
    william huard

    Sage Grouse populations are what 200,000 to 500,000 when previous there were 16 million? The DOI and Salazar have no legal footing here. They should have been listed in 2004 when Julie McDonald pulled her unethical and illegal meddling into several of these cases. These other species that deserve protection- any thoughts as to who these other candidates other than the wolf are- if the wolf is even one of the species that they have in mind?


Ken Cole is a 5th generation Idahoan, an avid fly fisherman, wildlife enthusiast, and photographer. He is the interim Idaho Director for Western Watersheds Project.

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Ken Cole