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Apr. 5, 2021
A bill to direct the Secretary of the Interior to reissue a final rule relating to removing the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem population of grizzly bears from the Federal list of endangered and threatened wildlife. (Congressional Record: 26 February 2021 [House] Pages H855-H859)
Mar. 26, 2021
USFWS proposes to reclassify (downlist) the Hawaiian stilt (Himantopus mexicanus knudseni) from endangered to threatened under the ESA. After a review of the best available scientific and commercial information, they find that the subspecies' status has improved such that it is not currently in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its range, but that it is still likely to become so in the foreseeable future. They also propose a rule under section 4(d) of the ESA that provides for the conservation of the Hawaiian stilt. Additionally, they also recognize the name "aeo" as an alternative common name. USFWS will accept comments received or postmarked on or before 24 May 2021. POC is Katherine Mullett, Field Supervisor, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Pacific Islands Fish and Wildlife Office, 300 Ala Moana Boulevard, Room 3-122, Honolulu, HI 96850; tel 808-792-9400. (Federal Register 25 March 2021 [Proposed Rule] pages 15855-15876)
Mar. 19, 2021
A bill to exempt certain wildfire mitigation activities from certain environmental requirements. (Congressional Record: 8 February 2021 [House] Pages H479-H483)
Mar. 15, 2021
A bill to amend the Endangered Species Act of 1973 to provide that nonnative species in the United States shall not be treated as endangered species or threatened species for purposes of that Act. (Congressional Record: 8 February 2021 [House] Pages H479-H483)
Mar. 9, 2021
USFWS determine endangered species status for the Missouri distinct population segment (DPS) of eastern hellbender (Cryptobranchus alleganiensis alleganiensis), a salamander species. This rule adds this DPS of this species to the Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife. This rule is effective 8 April 2021. POC is Karen Herrington, Field Supervisor, Missouri Ecological Services Field Office, 101 Park DeVille Drive, Suite A, Columbia, MO 65203; tel: 573-234-2132. (Federal Register 9 March 2021 [Rule] Pages 13465-13475.
Mar. 8, 2021
USFWS removed Bradshaw's lomatium (Lomatium bradshawii, also known as Bradshaw's desert parsley), a plant found in western Oregon and southwestern Washington, from the Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Plants. Their review of the best available scientific and commercial data indicates that the threats to Bradshaw's lomatium have been eliminated or reduced to the point that the species no longer meets the definition of an endangered or threatened species under the ESA. This rule is effective 7 April 2021. Paul Henson, State Supervisor, USFWS, Oregon Fish and Wildlife Office, 2600 SE 98th Avenue, Suite 100, Portland, OR 97266; tel: 503-231-6179. (Federal Register: 8 March 2021 [Rule] pages 13200-13215)
Mar. 5, 2021
A bill to amend the Endangered Species Act of 1973 to vest in the Secretary of the Interior functions under that Act with respect to species of fish that spawn in fresh or estuarine waters and migrate to ocean waters, and species of fish that spawn in ocean waters and migrate to fresh waters. (Congressional Record: 5 February 2021 [House] Pages H466-H469)
Mar. 4, 2021
USFWS announced a 12-month finding on a petition to list the Arizona eryngo (Eryngium sparganophyllum), a plant species native to Arizona and New Mexico in the United States, and to Sonora and Chihuahua in Mexico, as an endangered species and to designate critical habitat in Arizona under the ESA. After a review of the best available scientific and commercial information, they find that listing the species is warranted. Accordingly, they propose to list the Arizona eryngo as an endangered species under ESA. If finalized this rule as proposed, would add this species to the List of Endangered and Threatened Plants and extend the Act's protections to the species. USFWS also propose to designate critical habitat for the Arizona eryngo under the Act. In total, approximately 13.0 acres (5.3 hectares) in Pima and Cochise Counties, Arizona, fall within the boundaries of the proposed critical habitat designation. Comments will be accepted on or before 3 May 2021. POC is Jeff Humphrey, Arizona Ecological Services Field Office, 9828 North 31st Ave. C3, Phoenix, AZ 85051-2517; tel:602-242-0210. Click here for more
Mar. 2, 2021
A bill to amend the Endangered Species Act of 1973 to include a prohibition on the listing of a living nonnative species as a threatened species or an endangered species. (Congressional Record: 8 February 2021 [Senate] Pages S571-S573)
Feb. 17, 2021
A bill to require the Secretary of the Interior to prohibit the use of lead ammunition on United States Fish and Wildlife Service lands. (Congressional Record: 21 January 2021 [House] Pages H220-H224)
Feb. 17, 2021
This edition highlights proactively considering environmental consequences and acting accordingly, in support of Environmental Operating Principle #2. Content includes commentary from Dr. Edmond Russo, U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center (ERDC) Environmental Laboratory Director, and highlights initiatives across the Army environmental community.
Feb. 10, 2021
A bill to amend the Endangered Species Act of 1973 to exclude the gray wolf from the authority of such Act, to remove the gray wolf from the lists of threatened species and endangered species published pursuant to such Act. (Congressional Record: 12 January 2021 [House] Pages H148-H149)
Feb. 9, 2021
On 7 January 2021, FWS, published a final rule ("MBTA rule") defining the scope of the MBTA as it applies to conduct resulting in the injury or death of migratory birds protected by the MBTA. FWS are delaying the MBTA rule's effective date until 8 March 2021, in conformity with the Congressional Review Act (CRA). They request public comments to inform our review of this final rule and to determine whether the further extension of the effective date is necessary. As of 5 February 2021, the effective date of the rule that published on 7 January 2021, at 86 FR 1134, is delayed until 8 March 2021. POC is Jerome Ford, Assistant Director, Migratory Birds, at 202-208-1050. (Federal Register: 9 February 2021 [Rule] Pages 8715-8717)
Jan. 22, 2021
A bill to amend the Endangered Species Act to prevent a species that is not native to the United States from being listed as an endangered species or a threatened species, to prohibit certain types of financial assistance. (Congressional Record: 4 January 2021 [House] Pages H43-H51)
Jan. 19, 2021
USFWS proposes to reclassify (downlist) Furbish's lousewort (Pedicularis furbishiae) from an endangered species to a threatened species under the ESA. This information is based on a thorough review of the best available scientific and commercial information, which indicates the threats to the species have been reduced to the point that the species no longer meets the definition of an endangered species under the Act. They request information and comments from the public on this proposal. They will accept comments received or postmarked on or before 16 March 2021. POC is Project Leader, Maine Ecological Services Field Office, 306 Hatchery Road, East Orland, ME 04431; tel: 207-902-1567. (Federal Register: 15 January 2021 [Proposed Rule] Pages 3976-3986).
Jan. 13, 2021
USFWS are removing the inland population of the least tern (Interior least tern) (Sterna (now Sternula) antillarum), from the Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife due to recovery. This determination is based on a thorough review of the best available scientific and commercial data, which indicates that the Interior least tern has recovered and the threats to the Interior least tern have been eliminated or reduced to the point that the species no longer meets the definition of an endangered species or threatened species under ESA. Accordingly, the prohibitions and protections provided by the Act will no longer apply to the Interior least tern. This rule is effective 12 February 2021. Stephen Ricks, Field Supervisor, USFWS, Mississippi Ecological Services Field Office, 6578 Dogwood View Parkway, Jackson, MS 39213; tel (601) 321-1122. (Federal Register: 13 January 2021 [Rule] Pages 2564-2581)
Jan. 11, 2021
NMFS, announced revisions to their 9 December 2014, proposed designation of critical habitat for the Arctic subspecies of the ringed seal (Pusa hispida hispida) under ESA. The revised proposed designation comprises an area of marine habitat in the Bering, Chukchi, and Beaufort seas. Based on consideration of national security impacts, they also propose to exclude a particular area north of the Beaufort Sea shelf from the designation. NMFS seeks comments on all aspects of the revised proposed critical habitat designation and will consider information received before issuing a final designation. Comments must be received by 9 March 2021. Public hearings on the revised proposed rule will be held in Alaska. POC is Tammy Olson, NMFS Alaska Region, (907) 271-5006; Jon Kurland, NMFS Alaska Region, (907) 586-7638. (Federal Register 8 January 2021 [Proposed Rule] Pages 1452-1474)
Jan. 11, 2021
NMFS proposes to designate critical habitat for the Beringia distinct population segment (DPS) of the Pacific bearded seal subspecies Erignathus barbatus nauticus under the ESA. The proposed designation comprises an area of marine habitat in the Bering, Chukchi, and Beaufort seas. NMFS seeks comments on all aspects of the proposed critical habitat designation and will consider information received before issuing a final designation. Comments must be received by 9 March 2020. Public hearings on the proposed rule will be held in Alaska. POC is Tammy Olson, NMFS Alaska Region, (907) 271-5006; Jon Kurland, NMFS Alaska Region, (907) 586-7638. (Federal Register 8 January 2021 [Proposed Rule] Pages 1433-1452)
Jan. 11, 2021
UFWS define the scope of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA) as it applies to conduct resulting in the injury or death of migratory birds protected by the Act. USFWS determine that the MBTA's prohibitions on pursuing, hunting, taking, capturing, killing, or attempting to do the same, apply only to actions directed at migratory birds, their nests, or their eggs. This rule is effective 8 February 2021. POC is Jerome Ford, Assistant Director, Migratory Birds, tele: 202-208-1050. (Federal Register 1 January 2021 [Rule] Pages 1134-1165)
Jan. 4, 2021
USFWS is reclassifying the June sucker (Chasmistes liorus) from endangered to threatened under the ESA, due to substantial improvements in the species' overall status since its original listing as endangered in 1986. This action is based on a thorough review of the best scientific and commercial data available, which indicates that the June sucker no longer meets the definition of an endangered species under the Act. The June sucker will remain protected as a threatened species under the Act. This rule is effective 3 February 2021. POC is Yvette Converse, Field Supervisor, Utah Ecological Services Field Office, 2369 Orton Circle, Suite 50, West Valley City, UT 84119; tele: 801-975-3330. (Federal Register 4 January 2021 [Rule] Pages 192-212).
Dec. 18, 2020
USFWS amended portions of their regulations that implement section 4 of the ESA. The revisions set forth a process for excluding areas of critical habitat under section 4(b)(2) of the Act, which mandates their consideration of the impacts of designating critical habitat and permits exclusions of particular areas following a discretionary exclusion analysis. These regulations outline when and how the Service will undertake an exclusion analysis, including identifying a non-exhaustive list of categories of potential impacts that they will consider. This rule, reflects agency experience, codifies some current agency practices, makes some modifications to current agency practice, and responds to applicable Supreme Court case law. The intended effect of this rule is to provide greater transparency and certainty for the public and stakeholders. This final regulation is effective on 19 January 2021. POC is Gary Frazer, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior, Washington, DC 20240, tel: 202/208-4646. (Federal Register 18 December 2020 [Rule] Pages 82376-82389)
Dec. 16, 2020
USFWS and NMFS, added a definition of "habitat" to their regulations that implement section 4 of the ESA. This rulemaking responds to Supreme Court case law regarding the designation of critical habitat and provides transparency, clarity, and consistency for stakeholders. This final regulation is effective on 15 January 2021. POCs are Gary Frazer, USFWS, Department of the Interior, Washington, DC 20240, tel: (202) 208-4646; or Samuel D. Rauch, III, NMFS, Office of Protected Resources, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910, tel: (301) 427-8403. (Federal Register 16 December 2020 [Rule] Pages 81411-81421)
Dec. 15, 2020
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announces a 12-month finding on a petition to list the northern spotted owl (Strix occidentalis caurina) as an endangered species under the ESA. After a thorough review of the best available scientific and commercial information, they find that reclassification of the northern spotted owl from a threatened species to an endangered species is warranted but precluded by higher priority actions to amend the Lists of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants. They will develop a proposed rule to reclassify the northern spotted owl as our priorities allow. The finding in this document was made on 15 December 2020. POC is Paul Henson, State Supervisor, Oregon Fish and Wildlife Office, tel: 503-231-6179, email: paul_henson@fws.gov. (Federal Register 15 December 2020 [Rule] Pages 81144-81152)
Dec. 1, 2020
The USFWS recently proposed to change the status of the red-cockaded woodpecker from "endangered" to "threatened." The Service also proposed a "4(d) rule" – new regulations that will govern how landowners can manage their forests when this species is present. In this webinar, the General Counsel & Director of Regulatory Affairs at Forest Landowners Association will provide an overview of the USFWS proposal, an analysis of how it affects forest landowners, a summary of the key issues.
Nov. 23, 2020
This edition highlights fostering sustainability as a way of life, in support of Environmental Operating Principle #1. Content includes: commentary from Maj. Gen. Jeffrey Milhorn, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Deputy Commanding General for Military and International Operations, discussing how sustainability ensures mission success in the present and future; and features sustainability initiatives across the Army environmental community. This issue also recognizes Mike Pomeroy, Detroit Dam Power Plant Operator with USACE Portland District, who in addition to protecting himself and our infrastructure during a wilderness wildfire, took additional action to protect the water supply for Salem, Oregon.
Nov. 3, 2020
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service have evaluated the classification status of the gray wolf entities currently listed in the lower 48 United States and Mexico under the ESA. Based on that evaluation, they are removing the gray wolf entities in the lower 48 United States and Mexico, except for the Mexican wolf (C. l. baileyi), that are currently on the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife. The effect of this rulemaking action is that C. lupus is not classified as a threatened or endangered species under the Act. This rule does not have any effect on the separate listing of the Mexican wolf subspecies (Canis lupus baileyi) as endangered under the Act. In addition, they announce a 90-day finding on a petition to maintain protections for the gray wolf in the lower 48 United States as endangered or threatened distinct population segments. Based on our review, they find that the petition does not present substantial scientific or commercial information indicating the petitioned actions may be warranted. Therefore, they are not initiating status reviews of the petitioned entities in response to the petition. This rule is effective 4 January 2021. POC is Bridget Fahey, Chief, Division of Classification and Conservation, Ecological Services, USFWS, Headquarters Office, MS: ES, 5275, Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041-3803; tel: 703-358-2163. (Federal Register: 3 November 2020 [Rule] Pages 69778-69895)
Oct. 29, 2020
USDA is adopting a final rule to exempt the Tongass National Forest from the 2001 Roadless Area Conservation Rule (2001 Roadless Rule), which prohibits timber harvest and road construction/reconstruction with limited exceptions within designated inventoried roadless areas. In addition, the rule directs an administrative change to the timber suitability of lands deemed unsuitable, solely due to the application of the 2001 Roadless Rule, in the 2016 Tongass National Forest Land and Resource Management Plan (Tongass Forest Plan or Forest Plan), Appendix A. The rule does not authorize any ground-disturbing activities, nor does it increase the overall amount of timber harvested from the Tongass National Forest. This rule is effective 29 October 2020. POC is Ken Tu, Interdisciplinary Team Leader, at 303-275-5156 or akroadlessrule@usda.gov. (Federal Register: 29 October 2020 [Rule] pages 68688-68703)
Oct. 22, 2020
The Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation) is amending its regulations to add a definition for electric bikes (E-bikes) and exclude E-bikes from the regulatory definition of an off-road vehicle where E-bikes are being used on roads and trails where mechanized, non-motorized use is allowed, where E-bikes are not propelled exclusively by a motorized source, and appropriate Reclamation Regional Directors expressly determine through a formal decision that E-bikes should be treated the same as non-motorized bicycles. This change facilitates increased E-bike use where other types of bicycles are allowed in a manner consistent with existing use of Reclamation land, and increases recreational opportunities for all Americans, especially those with physical limitations. This rulemaking is effective 23 November 2020. POC: Ryan Alcorn, Asset Management Division, Bureau of Reclamation, tel: (303) 445-2711; email: ralcorn@usbr.gov. (Federal Register: 23 November 2020 [Rule] Pages 67294-67299)
Oct. 22, 2020
The USDA Forest Service announced it is now accepting applications for approximately $10 million in funding through the 2021 Wood Innovations Grant and the 2021 Community Wood Energy and Wood Innovation Grant. These grants seek to support local economies through wood products and wood energy innovations while reducing hazardous fuels and improving forest health.
Oct. 15, 2020
USFWS reclassify (downlist) the American burying beetle (Nicrophorus americanus) from endangered to threatened on the Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife. This determination is based on a thorough review of the best available scientific and commercial information, which indicates that the threats to this species have been reduced to the point that it is not currently in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its range, but that it is likely to become so within the foreseeable future. They also finalize a rule under the authority of section 4(d) of the Act that provides measures that are necessary and advisable to provide for the conservation of the American burying beetle. This rule is effective 16 November 2020. POC Jonna Polk, Field Supervisor, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Oklahoma Ecological Services Field Office, 9014 East 21st St., Tulsa, OK 74129; tel: 918-382-4500. (Federal Register 15 October 2020 [Rule] Pages 65241-65261)
Oct. 13, 2020
USFWS announced a 12-month finding on a petition to list the Puerto Rican harlequin butterfly (Atlantea tulita), a species from Puerto Rico, as a threatened species and designate critical habitat under the ESA. USFWS propose to list the Puerto Rican harlequin butterfly as a threatened species with a rule issued under section 4(d) of the Act ("4(d) rule"). If they finalize this rule as proposed, it would add this species to the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and extend the Act's protections to the species. They also propose to designate critical habitat for the Puerto Rican harlequin butterfly under the Act. In total, approximately 41,266 acres (16,699.8 hectares) in six units in the municipalities of Isabela, Quebradillas, Camuy, Arecibo, Utuado, Florida, Ciales, Maricao, San Germán, Sabana Grande, and Yauco are within the boundaries of the proposed critical habitat designation. USFWS will accept comments received or postmarked on or before 14 December 2020. POC is Edwin Muñiz, Field Supervisor, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Caribbean Ecological Services Field Office, P.O. Box 491, Road 301 km 5.1, Boquerón, PR 00622; tel: 787-851-7297. (Federal Register: 13 October 2020 [Proposed Rule] Pages 64908-64937)
Oct. 13, 2020
USFWS withdraw the proposed rule to list the distinct population segment (DPS) of the North American wolverine (Gulo gulo luscus) occurring in the contiguous United States as a threatened species under the ESA. This withdrawal is based on their conclusion that the factors affecting the species as identified in the proposed rule are not as significant as believed at the time of the proposed rule. They base this conclusion on our analysis of current and future threat factors. They also find that North American wolverines occurring in the contiguous United States do not qualify as a DPS. Therefore, They are withdrawing our proposal to list the wolverine within the contiguous United States as a threatened species. The proposed rule that published 4 February 2013 (78 FR 7864), to list the distinct population segment of the North American wolverine occurring in the contiguous United States as a threatened species is withdrawn on 13 October 2020. POC is Jodi Bush, Field Supervisor, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Montana Ecological Services Office. (Federal Register 13 October 2020 [Proposed Rule] Pages 64618-64648).
Oct. 8, 2020
USFWS determined threatened species status under the ESA for the coastal distinct population segment (DPS) of Pacific marten (Martes caurina), a small mammal from coastal California and Oregon. They also issue final regulations that are necessary and advisable to provide for the conservation of this DPS under section 4(d) of the Act (a "4(d) rule"). This final rule extends the Act's protections to the coastal DPS of Pacific marten, subject to the 4(d) rule's exceptions. This rule is effective 9 November 2020. POC is Dan Everson, Field Supervisor, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Arcata Fish and Wildlife Office. (Federal Register 8 October 2020 [Rule] Pages 63806-63831)
Oct. 8, 2020
USFWS determined threatened species status for the eastern black rail (Laterallus jamaicensis jamaicensis) under the ESA. Accordingly, they list the eastern black rail, a bird subspecies known from as many as 35 States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Canada, Brazil, and several countries in the Caribbean and Central America, as a threatened species under the Act. The effect of this regulation will be to add this subspecies to the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife. They also finalize a rule under the authority of section 4(d) of the Act that provides measures that are necessary and advisable to provide for the conservation of the eastern black rail. They have determined that designation of critical habitat for the eastern black rail is not prudent. This rule is effective 9 November 2020. POC is Tom McCoy, Field Supervisor, South Carolina Ecological Services Field Office, 176 Croghan Spur Road, Suite 200, Charleston, SC 29407; tel: 843-727-4707. (Federal Register: 8 October 2020 [Rule] Pages 63764-63803)
Oct. 2, 2020
The Invasive Species Leadership Team (ISLT) has been the Corps of Engineers' go-to team for invasive species expertise since 2005. The 26 members and liaisons of the ISLT represent the Corps of Engineers on interagency committees, promote Engineer Research and Development Center (ERDC) research programs, and actively contribute to the Invasive Species Management Community of Practice. ISLT success is a result of working together, blending policy and science with action to respond to threats to our nation's water resources.
Sep. 30, 2020
U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE's) Wind Energy Technologies Office (WETO) has worked on ways to protect bats at wind farms. One solution is the development of an ultrasonic bat deterrent technology, from initial concept to recent commercial deployment at wind farms domestically and abroad.
Sep. 30, 2020
USFWS designated critical habitat for the trispot darter (Etheostoma trisella) under the ESA. They are designating as critical habitat for this species six units, totaling approximately 175.4 miles (282.3 kilometers) of streams and rivers and 9,929 acres (4,018 hectares), in Calhoun, Cherokee, Etowah, and St. Clair Counties in Alabama; Gordon, Murray, and Whitfield Counties in Georgia; and Bradley and Polk Counties in Tennessee. This rule extends the Act's protections to the trispot darter's designated critical habitat. This rule is effective 30 October 2020. POC is William Pearson, Field Supervisor, USFWS, tel: 251-441-5184. (Federal Register: 30 September 2020 (Rule) Pages 61619-61638)
Sep. 29, 2020
BirdCast provides real-time predictions of bird migrations: when they migrate, where they migrate, and how far they will be flying. Knowledge of migratory behavior can support decisions about conservation actions on the ground to mitigate numerous hazards birds face and to prevent deaths of millions of birds annually. Accurate migration models can have broad application, allowing researchers to understand behavioral aspects of migration, how migration timing and pathways respond to changing climate, and whether linkages exist between variation in migration timing and subsequent changes in population size.
Sep. 25, 2020
EPA is designating one ocean dredged material disposal site (ODMDS), the Isles of Shoals North Disposal Site (IOSN), located in the Gulf of Maine off the coast of southern Maine and New Hampshire, pursuant to the Marine Protection, Research, and Sanctuaries Act (MPRSA). This action is necessary to serve the long-term need for an ODMDS for the possible future disposal of suitable dredged material from harbors and navigation channels in southern Maine, New Hampshire, and northern Massachusetts. The basis for this action is described herein and in the Final Environmental Assessment (FEA). The FEA identifies designation of the IOSN as the preferred alternative from the range of options considered. The Site Management and Monitoring Plan (SMMP) is provided as Appendix G of the FEA. The Final rule is effective on 26 October 2020. POC is Ms. Regina Lyons, EPA, Region 1, 5 Post Office Square, Suite 100, Mail Code: 06-1, Boston, MA 02109-3912, tel: (617) 918-1557; email: lyons.regina@epa.gov. (Federal Register: 25 September 2020 [Rule] Pages 60370-60383)
Sep. 1, 2020
USFWS have reconsidered whether designating critical habitat for the rusty patched bumble bee (Bombus affinis) would be prudent. On 11 January 2017, they published a final rule listing the rusty patched bumble bee as an endangered species under the ESA. In that final rule, they stated that designation of critical habitat may be prudent, but not determinable. They have now determined that such a designation would not be prudent. The present or threatened destruction, modification, or curtailment of habitat is not the primary threat to the species, and the availability of habitat does not limit the conservation of the rusty patched bumble bee now, nor will it in the future. The determination announced in this document was made on 1 September 2020. POC is Sarah Quamme, Field Supervisor, Minnesota-Wisconsin Ecological Services Field Office, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 4101 American Blvd. E, Bloomington, MN 55425; tel: 952-252-0092. (Federal Register: 1 September 2020 [Rule] Pages 54281-54285)
Aug. 27, 2020
EPA announces the release of How's My Waterway. How's My Waterway is a tool that assembles publicly available water quality data into a user-friendly package that provides information on water quality in our nation's waters. Map-centric and mobile-friendly, How's My Waterway works on all different screen sizes, from desktop computers and tablets to mobile phones
Aug. 18, 2020
This edition of The Corps Environment highlights creating mutually supporting economic and environmentally sustainable solutions, in support of Environmental Operating Principle #3. It features articles that illustrates the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers efforts to advance Army readiness through environmental compliance and stewardship, including projects to improve waterway navigation, protecting historic sites while managing ever-changing training missions, improving hazardous material management, protecting endangered species, reducing energy costs, leveraging alternate water sourcing, recycling initiatives, bee pollinators, responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, preparing for the 2020 hurricane season, and more.
Aug. 11, 2020
The U.S. Department of Agriculture is correcting a final rule that appeared in the Federal Register on 10 July 2020. The final rule amends existing special use regulations to implement section 512 of the Federal Land Policy and Management Act, as added by section 211 of division O, Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2018 (hereinafter "section 512"). Section 512 governs the development and approval of operating plans and agreements for maintenance and vegetation management of electric transmission and distribution line facilities (powerline facilities) on National Forest System (NFS) lands inside the linear boundary of special use authorizations for powerline facilities and on abutting NFS lands to remove or prune hazard trees. Effective 10 August 2020. POC is Reggie Woodruff, Energy Program Manager, Lands and Realty Management, 202-205-1196 or reginal.woodruff@usda.gov. (Federal Registry: 11 August 2020 [Rule] pages 48475-48476)
Jul. 28, 2020
Hear from five presenters from around the country who will share their experiences and lessons learned in moving their programs to a virtual platform. They will cover topics ranging from things you can do in your own backyard to large-scale conferences. This event is open to everyone, but is targeted for natural resources professionals who are considering organizing virtual events in the future.
Jul. 23, 2020
USFWS announced findings that four species are not warranted for listing as endangered or threatened species under the ESA. After a thorough review of the best available scientific and commercial information, USFWS find that it is not warranted at this time to list the Upper Missouri River DPS of Arctic grayling, Elk River crayfish, rattlesnake-master borer moth, and northern Virginia well amphipod. The findings in this document were made on 23 July 2020. (Federal Register: 23 July 2020 [Rule] Pages 44478-44483).
Jul. 1, 2020
Representatives from USACE collectively share management strategies, lessons learned, local challenges, and the importance of partnerships and strategic planning when controlling wild pig populations.
Jun. 30, 2020
USFWS designate critical habitat for the elfin-woods warbler (Setophaga angelae) under the ESA of 1973. In total, approximately 27,488 acres (11,125 hectares) in the Maricao, San Germán, Sabana Grande, Yauco, Río Grande, Canóvanas, Las Piedras, Naguabo, Ceiba, Cayey, San Lorenzo, Guayama, and Patillas municipalities in Puerto Rico fall within the boundaries of the critical habitat designation. The effect of this regulation is to extend the Act's protections to the elfin-woods warbler's critical habitat. This rule is effective on 30 July 2020. POC is Marelisa Rivera, Deputy Field Supervisor, USFWS, Caribbean Ecological Services Field Office, P.O. Box 491, Road 301 km 5.1, Boquerón, PR 00622; tel: 787-851-7297. (Federal Registry: 30 June 2020 [Rule] Pages 39077-39095)
Jun. 25, 2020
EPA Administrator signed a proclamation designating the week of June 22 as National Pollinator Week. Administrator Wheeler is the first EPA Administrator to sign such a proclamation – joining leadership from the DOI, the USDA, all 50 Governors and hundreds of governments and organizations around the world.
Jun. 23, 2020
USFWS designated critical habitat for the Sonoyta mud turtle (Kinosternon sonoriense longifemorale) under the ESA. In total, 12.28 acres (4.97 hectares) in Pima County, Arizona, located entirely within the Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument, fall within the boundaries of the critical habitat designation. This rule extends the Act's protections to this subspecies' designated critical habitat. This rule is effective on 23 July 2020. POC is Jeff Humphrey, Field Supervisor, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Arizona Ecological Services Field Office, 9828 North 31st Ave. #C3, Phoenix, AZ 85051-2517; 602-242-0210. (Federal Register: 23 July 2020 [Rule] Pages 37576-37590).
Jun. 11, 2020
USFWS are removing the Borax Lake chub (currently listed as Gila boraxobius), a fish native to Oregon, from the Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife on the basis of recovery. This final rule is based on a review of the best available scientific and commercial information, which indicates that the threats to the Borax Lake chub have been eliminated or reduced to the point where the species no longer meets the definition of an endangered or threatened species under the ESA. This rule is effective 13 July 2020. POC is Paul Henson, State Supervisor, Oregon Fish and Wildlife Office, 2600 SE 98th Avenue, Suite 100, Portland, OR 97266; tel: 503-231-6179. (Federal Register: 11 June 2020 [Rule] pages 35574-35594)
May. 18, 2020
USACE, as part of an interagency effort with the EPA, the FWS and the NRCS, is announcing the availability of the final 2018 National Wetland Plant List (NWPL). The NWPL provides plant species indicator status ratings, which are used in determining whether the hydrophytic vegetation factor is met when conducting wetland delineations under the Clean Water Act and wetland determinations under the Wetland Conservation Provisions of the Food Security Act. The list will become effective on 18 May 2020 and will be used in any wetland delineations performed after this date. Delineations completed prior to this date may still use the 2016 NWPL. POC is Brianne McGuffie, Headquarters, USACE, Operations and Regulatory Community of Practice, Washington, DC 20314-1000; tele: 202-761-4750; email: brianne.e.mcguffie@usace.army.mil. (Federal Register 18 May 2020 [Final Rule] Pages 29689-29691)
May. 15, 2020
The Department of Defense (DoD) has announced the 2020 Secretary of Defense Environmental Awards winners. The awards recognize installations, teams, and individuals for their accomplishments in innovative and cost-effective environmental management strategies supporting mission readiness.
Mar. 25, 2020
"Igniting the Science of Outdoor Recreation" is a multi-agency effort led by the USDA Forest Service that has engaged over one hundred outdoor recreation and tourism researchers, practitioners, and advocates to strategize about how research programs can better serve the evolving needs of sustainable recreation and tourism managers on public lands. In this webinar, the presenters will set the stage for the need for a new research strategy with key arguments from a recent report authored by 17 recreation thought leaders. They will then take the audience on an annotated tour through the research strategy, highlighting the interdisciplinary and cross-sector research areas and partnerships prioritized for a reinvigorated national recreation and tourism research program. Finally, they will share upcoming opportunities to engage with an expanding and evolving community of practice dedicated to implementing the research prioritized in the strategy.
Mar. 25, 2020
Climate change is already affecting the ability of individuals to participate in outdoor recreation. In the coming decades these impacts are expected to become more noticeable. Some geographic regions and outdoor recreation activities will see increased participation rates while others will be negatively impacted, potentially significantly. These impacts will have numerous ripple effects, including shifts in the economic vitality of recreation-dependent communities to the sustainability of existing management approaches used by local, state, and federal agencies. This webinar will present the state- of-the science about what is known about how climate change will affect outdoor recreation across the United States. The presentation will highlight specific geographic regions and outdoor recreation activities that will continue to be impacted in the near future. The presentation will finish with a discussion of solutions that local, state, and federal management agencies can put in place to adapt to future impacts.
Feb. 27, 2020
USFWS designated critical habitat for the black pinesnake (Pituophis melanoleucus lodingi) under the ESA. In total, approximately 324,679 acres (131,393 hectares) in Forrest, George, Greene, Harrison, Jones, Marion, Perry, Stone, and Wayne Counties, Mississippi, and in Clarke County, Alabama, fall within the boundaries of the critical habitat designation. The effect of this regulation is to designate critical habitat for the black pinesnake under the Act. This rule becomes effective on 27 March 2020. POC is Stephen Ricks, Field Supervisor, USFWS, Mississippi Fish and Wildlife Office, 6578 Dogwood View Parkway, Jackson, MS; tel: 601-321-1122.(Federal Register; 26 February 2020 [Final Regulations] pages 11238-11270).
Feb. 27, 2020
USFWS adopted a rule under section 4(d) of the Endangered Species Act for the Louisiana pinesnake (Pituophis ruthveni), a reptile that is listed under the statute as threatened. This rule will provide measures to protect the species, which is from Louisiana and Texas. This rule is effective March 30, 2020. POC is Joseph Ranson, Field Supervisor, USFWS, Louisiana Ecological Services Office, tel: 337-291-3113. (Federal Register 27 February 2020 [Rules and Regulations] Pages 11297-11306)
Feb. 20, 2020
The U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center-Environmental Laboratory's Unmanned Aircraft Systems team has created a comprehensive map for a 700-acre installation. The UAS team has conducted numerous geophysical data collections and has utilized UAS for coastal monitoring applications, assessing plant health, identifying cracks in airfield pavements and other aerial applications.
Feb. 3, 2020
This February 2020 edition of The Corps Environment is an online quarterly news magazine published by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and is intended to provide information about USACE and Army environmental initiatives, policies and technologies.
Nov. 11, 2019
The presentations from the 2019 Federal Environmental Symposium held on October 30-31, 2019 at the NIH campus in Bethesda, MD, are now available for viewing or download at https://www.fedcenter.gov/symposium2019-proceedings.
Sep. 30, 2019
Laws and regulations related to cultural and natural resources often require participatory processes that can be mired in conflict and misunderstanding. Projects frequently can be more effectively navigated when stakeholders use collaborative processes and mutual gains negotiation during consultation to resolve problems and develop win-win solutions. Through interactive exercises and role plays, learn to understand conflict management styles, practice negotiation skills, and design a stakeholder consultation process to address issues in a timely manner and prevent conflict from escalating.
Sep. 30, 2019
Learn about environmental impact analysis, cultural resource management, and historic preservation responsibilities and relationships. Assess practical applications for effectively integrating the analyses required by the National Environmental Policy Act, related environmental regulations, and the National Historic Preservation Act.
Aug. 26, 2019
Smoke from wildfires in the United States is adversely affecting air quality and potentially putting more people at health risk from smoke exposure. EPA, the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) and other federal, state and community agencies and organizations are working together to identify ways the public can prepare to reduce their health risk before a wildfire. Public health officials and others can use the resources in the Smoke-Ready Toolbox to help educate people about the risks of smoke exposure and actions they can take to protect their health.
Aug. 14, 2019
The "Fish and Shellfish Program Newsletter" is published monthly by EPA's Office of Water. It highlights current information about fish and shellfish -- providing a snapshot of recent advisories, federal agency activities, publications, awarded research, and future meetings and conferences. Click here for the June 2019 edition.
Aug. 7, 2019
August 2019 version of the quarterly publication of "The Corps Environment" newsletter published by the USACE Environmental Community of Practice. The purpose of this newsletter is to provide information about USACE and Army environmental actions, issues, policies and technologies. This edition highlights how the Corps employs an open and transparent process, in support of Environmental Operating Principle #7. In the spirit of transparency, this issue provides insight into the valuable role the Corps' National Program Managers (NPMs) play in championing environmental activities across the enterprise. It also includes content from some of the NPMs on the programs they support as well as highlights from the field.
Feb. 1, 2019
February 2019 version of the quarterly publication of "The Corps Environment" newsletter published by the USACE Environmental Community of Practice. The purpose of this newsletter is to provide information about USACE and Army environmental actions, issues, policies and technologies. This edition focuses on risk management and NEPA.
Jan. 24, 2019
In this introduction to the basics of cultural landscapes, learn about designed, vernacular, and ethnographic landscapes, and historic sites. Review applicable laws and regulations, and discuss how to identify and inventory character-defining features of a landscape. Explore the concepts of preservation planning and documentation, and the development of the cultural landscape report for use in managing historic and cultural landscapes. Case studies illustrate realistic approaches to effective landscape management and preservation. This seminar is offered by the National Preservation Institute.
Dec. 3, 2018
The "Fish and Shellfish Program Newsletter" is published monthly by EPA's Office of Water. It highlights current information about fish and shellfish -- providing a snapshot of recent advisories, federal agency activities, publications, awarded research, and future meetings and conferences. Click here for the October edition.
Nov. 14, 2018
Pollinators are a key part of the economy and vital to the production of many of our favorite foods. In 2014 federal facilities were directed to help reverse pollinator losses and restore populations for this crucial group of animals. Since receiving this direction many federal facilities have been working to increase their pollinator habitat and reporting their successes to the Federal Green Challenge (FGC). This FGC webinar recorded on 18 July 2018 will help facilities focus on increasing the amount of milkweed available for monarchs though the use of new mapping tools and a case study from a federal facility that has increased the amount of milkweed on its landscape.
Nov. 13, 2018
The "Fish and Shellfish Program Newsletter" is published monthly by EPA's Office of Water. It highlights current information about fish and shellfish -- providing a snapshot of recent advisories, federal agency activities, publications, awarded research, and future meetings and conferences. Click here for the September edition.
Oct. 9, 2018
The "Fish and Shellfish Program Newsletter" is published monthly by EPA's Office of Water. It highlights current information about fish and shellfish -- providing a snapshot of recent advisories, federal agency activities, publications, awarded research, and future meetings and conferences. Click here for the August edition.
Aug. 30, 2018
In 2014, federal facilities were directed to help reverse pollinator losses and restore populations for this crucial group of animals. Since receiving this direction many federal facilities have been working to increase their pollinator habitat and reporting their successes to the FGC. This Federal Green Challenge webinar presented 18 July 2018 will help facilities focus on increasing the amount of milkweed available for monarchs though the use of new mapping tools and a case study from a federal facility that has increased the amount of milkweed on its landscape.
Aug. 21, 2018
The Summer 2018 issue of Natural Selections, the DoD Natural Resources Program quarterly newsletter, is attached. The newsletter highlights training within DoD and includes updates from various DoD programs, initiatives, and partnerships.
Aug. 7, 2018
The "Fish and Shellfish Program Newsletter" is published monthly by EPA's Office of Water. It highlights current information about fish and shellfish -- providing a snapshot of recent advisories, federal agency activities, publications, awarded research, and future meetings and conferences. Click here for the June edition.
Jun. 19, 2018
The "Fish and Shellfish Program Newsletter" is published monthly by EPA's Office of Water. It highlights current information about fish and shellfish -- providing a snapshot of recent advisories, federal agency activities, publications, awarded research, and future meetings and conferences. Click here for April, here for May.
May. 17, 2018
April 2018 version of the quarterly publication of "The Corps Environment" newsletter published by the USACE Environmental Community of Practice. The purpose of this newsletter is to provide information about USACE and Army environmental actions, issues, policies and technologies.
Apr. 23, 2018
(WASHINGTON, April 20, 2018) The Defense Department is honoring nine winners with the 2018 Secretary of Defense Environmental Awards for exceptional environmental achievements and innovative, cost-effective environmental practices. The department has honored individuals, teams and installations each year since 1962 for remarkable achievements in these environmental management strategies that successfully support mission readiness, Ellen M. Lord, the undersecretary of defense for acquisition and sustainment, said in the memorandum announcing the recipients.
Apr. 11, 2018
The "Fish and Shellfish Program Newsletter" is published monthly by EPA's Office of Water. It highlights current information about fish and shellfish -- providing a snapshot of recent advisories, federal agency activities, publications, awarded research, and future meetings and conferences.
Oct. 3, 2017
Offered through support from the Nature Conservancy, this curriculum, consists of three, self-paced, online courses, provides a basic level of understanding of the basics of climate change, deforestation and forest degradation, and the REDD concept.
Sep. 26, 2017
ATTAINS allows for the submission of 303(d)/305(b) water quality data, Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) information, and support program goals aligned with both submissions processes. The ATTAINS system replaces the existing Assessment Database (ADB), the National TMDL Tracking System (NTTS). ATTAINS also replaces the Clean Water Act Integrated Reporting, Water Quality Assessment, Impaired Waters -OWIR data exchange
Sep. 11, 2017
This USFWS course is an overview of the species status assessment (SSA) framework, which is an analytical approach developed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to deliver foundational science information for all Endangered Species Act decisions. The overview will cover the basic concepts and minimum requirements of an SSA and will show you how to diagnose the level of complexity and expertise required to complete an SSA. Although the overview won't cover technical methods in detail, it will introduce the participant to some of the tools and resources available to conduct SSA's with an emphasis on those of low to moderate complexity.
Jul. 20, 2017
The DoD Chesapeake Bay Program has released the 2017 Summer Journal highlighting stewardship activities conducted by Department of Defense installations throughout the watershed.
Jun. 23, 2017
CESCL certification is required by the Washington State Department of Ecology, Construction Stormwater General Permit for personnel responsible for monitoring stormwater at construction sites disturbing one or more acres of land, or are part of a larger common plan of development. NWETC's 2-day CESCL course is a dynamic interaction between traditional classroom style lecture and hands-on field exercises. Interactive dialogue between the attendees and the trainers is also promoted, to encourage a shared learning environment.
Jun. 9, 2017
EPA has produced a guide to encourage partnerships between park agencies and stormwater agencies to promote the use of green infrastructure on park lands. Green infrastructure can help to maximize the environmental, economic, and social benefits of parks. By building strong partnerships, agencies can improve park lands and access to parks, better manage stormwater, increase community resiliency to shifting weather patterns, and provide funding to implement and maintain park enhancements that benefit the community.

The guide is designed to provide a stepwise approach for building relationships with potential partners, and includes information on how to identify and engage partners, build relationships, involve the community, leverage funding opportunities, and identify green infrastructure opportunities. It includes recommendations on the types of projects that are most likely to attract positive attention and funding, and which provide a wide range of benefits.

Case studies are included to illustrate the approaches presented in the guide. These real-life examples portray how partnerships between municipal stormwater agencies and parks departments have improved recreational resources in the community, enhanced environmental protection, and reduced risks and burdens.

Apr. 21, 2017
The Department of Defense (DoD) has announced the winners of the 2017 Secretary of Defense Environmental Awards. Each year since 1962, the Secretary of Defense has recognized individuals, teams, and installations for their outstanding achievements and innovative work protecting the environment while sustaining mission readiness. Military Services and Defense Agencies may submit one nomination for each of the nine award categories. A diverse panel of judges representing Federal and state agencies, academia, and the private sector select the winners.
Mar. 2, 2017
The Winter 2017 issue of Natural Selections, the DoD Natural Resources Program quarterly newsletter, is attached. The newsletter highlights training within DoD and includes updates from various DoD programs, initiatives, and partnerships.
Feb. 9, 2017
January 2017 version of the quarterly publication of "The Corps Environment" newsletter published by the USACE Environmental Community of Practice. The purpose of this newsletter is to provide information about USACE and Army environmental actions, issues, policies and technologies.
Jan. 17, 2017
Fall 2016 edition of the DoD Chesapeake Bay Program Journal, published quarterly and sponsored by the DOD/Navy Chesapeake Bay Program Office. See attached.
Jan. 13, 2017
The final "Policy to Mitigate the Acute Risk to Bees from Pesticide Products," describes methods for addressing acute risks to bees from pesticides. Applications of acutely toxic pesticides would be prohibited under certain conditions when bees are most likely to be present. While the restrictions focus on managed bees, EPA believes that these measures will also protect native bees and other pollinators that are in and around treatment areas.
Dec. 8, 2016
Safeguarding the Nation from the Impacts of Invasive Species
8 December 2016
This EO amends EO 13112 and directs Federal Agency actions to continue coordinated Federal prevention and control efforts related to invasive species.
Oct. 24, 2016
The Fall 2016 issue of Natural Selections, the DoD Natural Resources Program quarterly newsletter, is attached. The newsletter highlights training within DoD and includes updates from various DoD programs, initiatives, and partnerships.
Oct. 3, 2016
Summer 2016 edition of the DoD Chesapeake Bay Program Journal, published quarterly and sponsored by the DOD/Navy Chesapeake Bay Program Office. See attached.
Jul. 22, 2016
The Climate Ready Estuaries program (CRE) works with the National Estuary Programs and the coastal management community to assess climate change vulnerabilities, develop and implement adaptation strategies, and engage and educate stakeholders. Recently added resources to the CRE website address how much the sea has risen, how much it might rise, and what the impacts might be.
Jun. 21, 2016
The Summer 2016 issue of Natural Selections, the DoD Natural Resources Program quarterly newsletter, is attached. The newsletter highlights training within DoD and includes updates from various DoD programs, initiatives, and partnerships.
Jun. 13, 2016
For raising awareness and addressing the impacts of climate change on America's natural resources, seven awardees were recently recognized as the first recipients of the Climate Adaption Leadership Award for Natural Resources. The new award recognizes the outstanding leadership by organizations and individuals who develop innovative approaches to prevent changes that are affecting wildlife and natural resources. The Department of the Interior established the award as part of the Administration's Priority Agenda for Enhancing the Climate Resilience of America's Natural Resources.
Jun. 8, 2016
Published April 2016, this report highlights DoD's FY2015 key accomplishments, FY2014 and FY2015 programmatic milestone progress, and future planning efforts of the DoD Chesapeake Bay Program. See attached.
Jun. 3, 2016
April 2016 version of the quarterly publication of "The Corps Environment" newsletter published by the USACE Environmental Community of Practice. The purpose of this newsletter is to provide information about USACE and Army environmental actions, issues, policies and technologies.
May. 12, 2016
This newly released report collating data from the 2011 survey finds that less than half of wetland area, 48%, is in good condition based on plant community. Of the stressors the NWCA examined, physical alterations to wetland habitat such as surface compaction, ditches, or plant removal are the most widespread: 27% of wetland area nationally has high stress levels for surface hardening and vegetation removal, and 23% of wetland area has high stress levels for ditching. This is the first national monitoring study of the overall condition of wetlands conducted with a statistically-valid random sample approach.
May. 4, 2016
American Wetlands Month is a time when EPA and their partners in federal, state, tribal, local, non-profit and private sector organizations celebrate the vital importance of wetlands to our Nation's ecological, economic and social health. Wetlands help improve water quality, increase water storage and supply, reduce flooding and provide critical habitat for plants, fish and wildlife. Checkout activities and ways you can celebrate at this website.
Apr. 22, 2016
The Department of Defense (DoD) has announced the winners of the 2016 Secretary of Defense Environmental Awards. Each year since 1962, the Secretary of Defense has recognized individuals, teams, and installations for their outstanding achievements and innovative work protecting the environment while sustaining mission readiness. Military Services and Defense Agencies may submit one nomination for each of the nine award categories. A diverse panel of judges representing federal and state agencies, academia, and the private sector select the winners.
Mar. 30, 2016
Fall 2015 edition of the DoD Chesapeake Bay Program Journal, published quarterly and sponsored by the DOD/Navy Chesapeake Bay Program Office. See attached.
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Last Updated: March 09, 2007