Oct 9, 2014 Multi-Association Comments to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on its Proposed Rule on Exclusion of Federal Lands from Critical Habitat Designations Under the Endangered Species Act
Independent producers drill about 95 percent of American oil and natural gas wells, produce about 54 percent of American oil, and more than 85 percent of American natural gas. Many of the wells they develop and operate require federal permits because they involve activities that are regulated by federal law. As a result, those activities, if conducted in an area that has been designated as critical habitat, must be conducted so that they are not likely to result in the “destruction or adverse modification” of that habitat. For the reasons explained in detail below, the Independent Petroleum Association of America (IPAA) and cooperating associations respectfully request that the draft “Policy Regarding Implementation of Section 4(b)(2) of the Endangered Species Act,” as it pertains to the exclusion of federal lands from critical habitat designations, be withdrawn.