Governor Brown: “Sage-Grouse Decision a Big Win for Oregon” – Northeast Oregon Business News

Governor Brown: “Sage-Grouse Decision a Big Win for Oregon”

(Salem, OR) — This morning the U.S. Department of the Interior announced that sage-grouse will not be listed under the federal Endangered Species Act (ESA). Oregon has been highlighted as one of the key states that led the way to this federal finding.
 
“This is truly a historic effort – one that represents extraordinary collaboration across Oregon and the American West,” said U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell. “The leadership of Oregon Governor Brown has been an important part of the epic collaboration and helps to demonstrate that the Endangered Species Act can be a vital catalyst for conservation – ensuring that future generations can enjoy the diversity of wildlife that we do today. This historic landscape level conservation effort will benefit Westerners and hundreds of species that call this iconic landscape home, while giving states, businesses and communities the certainty they need to plan for sustainable economic development.”
 
“Oregonians have reason to be very proud of the work done by partners supporting healthy Oregon ecosystems, rural communities, and economies,” said Governor Brown. “The work of the SageCon partnership and our action plan helps our wildlife and its habitat while also addressing threats to the vitality of our farms and ranches, outdoor recreation, energy development, and other sectors.”
 
Land use, economic development, and wildlife management are normally governed by state and local laws. An ESA listing would have imposed new federal jurisdiction, process, and liabilities in those areas. The U.S. Department of the Interior’s finding that a listing is “not warranted” supports the ability of the state to manage its own future, based on partnerships and factors within Oregon’s own borders.
 
Specific actions the state took include:
 
Oregonians worked together through the Sage-Grouse Conservation Partnership (SageCon), which resulted in a prioritized conservation strategies contained in a state action plan and backed by an executive order, as well as new rules that ensure future land use and economic development is consistent with conservation of sage-grouse.
The Oregon Legislature and Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board significantly expanded resources to address: wildfire risk, invasive species, and jobs connected with habitat restoration work.
 
Rural communities adopted new measures that advance conservation and protection of rangeland health through Candidate Conservation Agreements with Assurances as well as enhanced Rangeland Fire Protection Association capacity.