Press Releases

Viewing recent news releases in program Public Lands .

32 Colorado Groups Support Biden’s Expected Pledge to Halt New Fossil Fuel Leasing, Permitting on Public Lands

January 26, 2021

DENVER— As President Biden prepares to announce a ban on new oil and gas leasing and permitting on public lands and oceans, 32 climate, conservation, religious and business groups in Colorado today announced support for the move in a letter to the president.

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Millions of Americans, Hundreds of Groups Support Halting Fossil Fuel Leasing, Permitting on Public Lands, Oceans

January 25, 2021

WASHINGTON— Environmental justice, Indigenous, climate and conservation groups from across the country announced today that in recent years they’ve delivered millions of petitions and public comments, and letters from hundreds of organizations, supporting a halt on new fossil fuel leasing and permitting on public lands and oceans.

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Lawsuit Challenges Trump Administration Review of Massive Arizona Copper Mine That Would Destroy Sacred Oak Flat

January 25, 2021

PHOENIX— Tribal and conservation groups sued the U.S. Forest Service Friday to stop a land trade that would hand over thousands of acres in the Tonto National Forest in central Arizona to a London-based mining company. The Oak Flat area, considered sacred by Apache and other Native people, would be destroyed by multinational mining company Rio Tinto for a massive copper mine.

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Trump Administration Flouts Law to Push Utah Highway Through Protected Conservation Lands

January 14, 2021

ST. GEORGE, Utah— The Trump administration issued a decision today to allow construction of the Northern Corridor Highway, a controversial four-lane highway through the protected Red Cliffs National Conservation Area in southwest Utah.

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Letter to Forest Service: Stop Cutting Down Centuries-old Trees on Grand Canyon’s North Rim

January 14, 2021

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.— The Center for Biological Diversity called on the U.S. Forest Service today to stop cutting down old-growth trees on northern Arizona’s Kaibab Plateau, an antiquated practice that worsens climate change, increases wildfire risk and damages forest ecosystems. In recent months commercial logging companies have felled hundreds of ancient, yellow-barked ponderosa pines on the Grand Canyon’s North Rim.

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Lawsuit Launched to Protect Endangered Fish From Drilling, Fracking in Nevada

January 13, 2021

LAS VEGAS— The Center for Biological Diversity issued a formal notice today of its intent to sue the Bureau of Land Management for failing to protect the endangered Railroad Valley springfish from oil drilling and fracking in central Nevada.

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Trump Administration Refuses to Address Significant Flaws in Greater Sage-grouse Plans

January 12, 2021

BOISE, Idaho— The Bureau of Land Management announced Monday that it is standing by its 2019 greater sage grouse land-use plans for seven western states, making no changes to the plans after reanalyzing them in supplemental environmental impact statements.

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Groups Challenge Trump Administration’s Sale of 58,000 Acres for Drilling in Montana, North Dakota

January 12, 2021

GREAT FALLS, Mont.— A coalition of groups today challenged five Bureau of Land Management oil and gas lease sales encompassing 112 parcels and 58,297 acres of federal public lands in Montana and North Dakota. The lawsuit claims the agency failed to fully assess the potential harm oil and gas extraction would have on the area’s groundwater and ignored cumulative climate impacts.

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Lawsuit Launched Over Trump Plan to Accelerate Clearcutting, Herbicide Spraying, Fuel Breaks Across Six Western States

January 12, 2021

RENO, Nev.— Conservation groups filed formal notice today of their intent to sue the Trump administration for violations of the Endangered Species Act stemming from two last-minute decisions authorizing widespread clearcutting, herbicide spraying, grazing, plowing and prescribed fire across 223 million acres of Bureau of Land Management public lands in the Great Basin.

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Instan a México a oponerse al muro de Trump y ayudar a restaurar los recursos naturales y culturales

January 12, 2021

CIUDAD DE MÉXICO— Grupos conservacionistas mexicanos, científicos y los líderes tradicionales O'odham de México instaron hoy al gobierno mexicano a oponerse a que se siga construyendo el muro fronterizo, condenar la destrucción ambiental y trabajar con la administración Biden para reabrir los corredores de vida silvestre cortados por el muro de Trump.

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Letter Urges Mexico to Oppose Trump’s Wall, Help Restore Natural, Cultural Resources

January 12, 2021

MEXICO CITY— Mexican conservation groups, scientists and the Traditional O’odham Leaders of Mexico today urged the Mexican government to oppose further border-wall construction, condemn the wall’s environmental destruction, and work with the Biden administration to reopen wildlife corridors severed by Trump’s wall.

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Scientists, Conservation Groups, Politicians Urge Biden Administration to Immediately Protect Tiehm’s Buckwheat

January 11, 2021

LAS VEGAS— More than 100 scientists, 15 conservation and botany groups, and three prominent Nevada politicians urged the incoming Biden administration today to immediately protect the rare wildflower Tiehm’s buckwheat under the Endangered Species Act.

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Trump Administration Rushes to Trade Sacred Oak Flat to Rio Tinto for Massive Arizona Copper Mine

January 7, 2021

TUCSON, Ariz.— The U.S. Forest Service has announced it will release a final version of its environmental analysis of the proposed Resolution Copper Project and Land Exchange on Jan. 15, a year ahead of schedule. The proposed mine site is on Apache sacred ground in the Tonto National Forest in central Arizona.

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Legal Agreement Blocks Fracking on 53 Oil Leases, Requires Climate Review for Management of 2 Million Acres in Colorado

January 6, 2021

DENVER— Conservation groups finalized an agreement with the Bureau of Land Management today that blocks drilling on more than 45,000 acres of oil and gas leases until officials revise land-management plans governing approximately 2 million acres of public lands in western Colorado.

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Report: Cattle Destroying Threatened Frog Habitat in Four Arizona Forests

January 6, 2021

TUCSON, Ariz.— Cattle have caused immense damage to critical habitat designated to help threatened Chiricahua leopard frogs recover throughout four national forests in Arizona, based on field surveys by the Center for Biological Diversity that show few sites still support frogs.

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Lawsuit Challenges Trump Administration Decision to Gut Tongass National Forest Protections

December 23, 2020

JUNEAU, Alaska— A wide-ranging coalition of Indigenous communities from Southeast Alaska, businesses and conservation organizations filed a lawsuit today targeting the Trump administration’s rollback of the federal Roadless Rule that protected the 17 million-acre Tongass National Forest, sometimes called America’s Amazon.

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Court Blocks Drilling Set to Begin in Newly Designated Utah Wilderness

December 22, 2020

WASHINGTON— A federal judge today enjoined the Trump administration’s approval of a plan to punch a helium well into the heart of the Labyrinth Canyon Wilderness in Utah just two days before Christmas. Road construction was set to begin Wednesday.

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Lawsuit Challenges Large Fossil Fuel Project Proposed in Alaska’s Arctic

December 21, 2020

ANCHORAGE, Alaska— Conservation groups filed a lawsuit today challenging a massive oil and gas project known as the Willow Master Development Plan in Alaska’s Western Arctic. Earthjustice, a nonprofit environmental law firm, sued the U.S. Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on behalf of the Center for Biological Diversity, Friends of the Earth and Greenpeace.

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Lawsuit Challenges Trump Administration Permitting for Helium Drilling in Newly Designated Utah Wilderness

December 18, 2020

WASHINGTON— Conservation groups have sued the Bureau of Land Management to challenge its illegal leasing of 1,400 acres for helium extraction within the newly designated Labyrinth Canyon Wilderness in southeastern Utah. The Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance, Natural Resources Defense Council, Center for Biological Diversity and Living Rivers filed suit Monday in federal district court.

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New Documents: New Mexico Rancher Who Pleaded Guilty to Bludgeoning Endangered Wolf Admitted Trapping, Beating One More

December 18, 2020

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz.— New documents obtained by the Center for Biological Diversity show that a New Mexico rancher confessed to trapping and beating at least one other endangered Mexican gray wolf in 2015. In 2018 rancher Craig Thiessen pleaded guilty to brutalizing a wolf he had trapped in violation of the Endangered Species Act.

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Lawsuit Filed to Stop New Oil Well, Pipeline in California’s Carrizo Plain National Monument

December 15, 2020

BAKERSFIELD, Calif.― Conservation groups today sued the Trump administration to reverse its approval of what would be the first new oil well and pipeline in Carrizo Plain National Monument since it was established in 2001.

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500 Groups Urge Biden to Order Fossil Fuel Leasing Ban

December 15, 2020

WASHINGTON— Hundreds of conservation, Native American, religious and business groups today sent President-elect Joe Biden text for a proposed executive order to ban new fossil fuel leasing and permitting on federal public lands and waters.

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Federal Judge Rejects Approval of Federal Oil, Gas Leases in Utah

December 11, 2020

SALT LAKE CITY— A federal judge overturned the Trump administration’s plan to lease more than 60,000 acres of public land for fracking in northern Utah’s Uintah Basin, including areas near Dinosaur National Monument, ruling that the Bureau of Land Management violated the law by refusing to consider alternatives to leasing all 59 parcels.

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Trump Revives Climate-hostile Tar Sands Push in Utah

December 9, 2020

SALT LAKE CITY— The Trump administration pushed forward today with leasing tar sands across 2,100 acres of public lands in northeastern Utah near the Green River, updating a plan from 2013 just weeks before leaving office. Producing fuel from tar sands generates up to twice the climate pollution and requires vastly more water than doing so from conventional oil.

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Final Defense Bill Denies Military Request to Expand Nevada Bombing Ranges

December 3, 2020

LAS VEGAS— Congress today moved to deny the Defense Department’s request to seize more than 1.7 million acres of public land in Nevada for bombing ranges, following a five-year grassroots campaign by public lands advocates to stop the land grab.

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Lawsuit Targets Feds’ Failure to Protect Endangered Mount Graham Red Squirrel Habitat

November 30, 2020

TUCSON, Ariz.— The Center for Biological Diversity and Maricopa Audubon sued the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today for failing to protect habitat essential to the survival and recovery of southeast Arizona’s highly endangered Mount Graham red squirrels.

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Trump Administration Recycles Slashing of Sage-grouse Protections, Opening Habitat to Drilling, Fracking Across Seven Western States

November 19, 2020

WASHINGTONꟷ The Trump administration unveiled its final analysis today to justify its 2019 land-management plans that slashed protections for the imperiled greater sage grouse across 51 million acres of the western United States.

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Legal Protest Blasts Trump Administration Plan for 47,000 Acres of Fracking Leases in Colorado

November 18, 2020

DENVER— Conservation groups filed a protest today challenging the Trump administration’s plan to auction fracking leases across more than 47,000 acres of public lands in Colorado. Fracking those leases would destroy habitat for a tenuous population of greater sage grouse, worsen deadly air pollution in the Denver metro area and cause up to 1.2 million tons of climate pollution.

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Utah Rejects Massive Water Grab Threatening Utah's Green River, Endangered Fish

November 18, 2020

SALT LAKE CITY— Following legal protests from the Center for Biological Diversity and dozens of other non-governmental and governmental organizations, Utah’s state engineer last night rejected a water-rights application from Water Horse Resources to pump nearly 18 billion gallons of water each year from Utah’s Green River over the Rocky Mountains to Colorado’s Front Range.

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Legal Protest Challenges Trump Administration Plan to Clearcut Old-growth Forest, Grizzly Habitat in Northwest Montana

November 16, 2020

YAAK, Mont.ꟷ Conservation groups filed a legal protest late Friday challenging a massive logging project that would clearcut thousands of acres, including old growth trees, and threaten an imperiled population of grizzly bears and protected Canada lynx habitat on the Montana-Canada border under the guise of restoration.

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Legal Protest Blasts Plan for 430 Square Miles of Fracking Leases in Wyoming

November 16, 2020

DENVER— Citing harm to wildlife, clean air and the climate, conservation groups filed a legal protest over the weekend challenging a Trump administration plan approving the sale of fracking leases on 275,000 acres of public lands in Wyoming. Fracking those leases would destroy habitat for greater sage-grouse, worsen air quality and cause up to 43 million tons of climate pollution — as much as a coal-fired power plant emits in 11 years.

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Feds Plan Drilling Project in Utah’s Labyrinth Canyon Wilderness

October 29, 2020

MOAB, Utah— The Bureau of Land Management released a plan last week allowing helium exploration and development in the recently designated Labyrinth Canyon Wilderness. The public has until Nov. 4 to comment on the impacts of this industrial development on lands set aside for permanent protection.

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Federal Appeals Court Blocks Coal-mining Construction in Protected Roadless Forest in Colorado

October 29, 2020

DENVER— A federal appeals court today blocked construction for a coal-mine expansion in the Sunset roadless area of Colorado’s Gunnison National Forest. The injunction from the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals prevents Mountain Coal, a subsidiary of Arch Resources, from further destruction of the roadless forest at the base of Mount Gunnison in the West Elk Mountains until a challenge from conservation groups is resolved.

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Lawsuit Challenges Pendley Over 1.7 Million-Acre Fossil Fuel Plan in Colorado

October 27, 2020

DENVER— Climate groups filed new legal claims today challenging the federal government’s 1.7 million-acre resource-management plan to expand fossil fuel development in southwestern Colorado, saying it should be overturned because it was approved during William Perry Pendley’s unlawful tenure directing the Bureau of Land Management.

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Judge Denies Motion, Opening Door to Lawsuits Challenging Pendley Decisions Spanning 30 Million Acres of Public Land

October 16, 2020

HELENA, Mont.— A federal judge denied a motion from conservation groups today to support a lawsuit involving William Perry Pendley’s unlawful tenure as acting director of the Bureau of Land Monument, opening the door to new lawsuits challenging Pendley’s decisions on land management plans and other policies. The plans allow fossil fuel extraction, mining and other industrialization across millions of acres of public lands in 11 states, including within the former boundaries of Utah’s Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument.

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Nevada Sen. Cortez Masto Proposes Massive Public Lands Seizure for Bombing Range, Development

October 8, 2020

RENO, Nev.— Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) has proposed legislation to transfer approximately half a million acres of public land to the U.S. Navy to expand the Fallon Naval Air Station bombing range in central Nevada. The bill, to be wrapped into the National Defense Authorization Act, would also sell or give away hundreds of thousands of acres of public land for development.

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Lawsuit Seeks Documents Tied to Cover-up of Groundwater Pumping at Arizona Army Base

October 7, 2020

TUCSON― The Center for Biological Diversity sued the U.S. Army, Fort Huachuca and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today for failing to release public records relating to the base’s coverup of a 2010 report showing groundwater pumping was harming the San Pedro River. The lawsuit also seeks documents related to the base’s new attempt to thwart river and endangered species protections.

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Lawsuit Aims to Compel Fish and Wildlife Service to Protect Bi-state Sage Grouse

September 29, 2020

SAN FRANCISCO― Conservation groups sued the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today for failing to protect the imperiled bi-state sage grouse under the Endangered Species Act despite ongoing population declines.

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Lawsuit Seeks Emergency Protections for Rare Nevada Wildflower

September 29, 2020

LAS VEGAS— The Center for Biological Diversity sued the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Bureau of Land Management today seeking protection for the rare Nevada wildflower Tiehm’s buckwheat.

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U.S. Forest Service Plan Guts Protections, Allows Clearcut Logging of Old-growth Trees in Alaska’s Tongass National Forest

September 24, 2020

WASHINGTON— The U.S. Forest Service announced a final plan today to eliminate roadless-rule protections in Alaska’s Tongass National Forest, opening vast swaths of irreplaceable old-growth temperate rainforest to clearcut logging.

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Colorado Agency Caves to U.S. Forest Service, OKs More Bulldozing of Roadless Forest

September 18, 2020

DENVER— Conservation groups urged a federal court today to halt further construction in a protected roadless area of the Gunnison National Forest. Today’s motion for expedited consideration came after Colorado officials modified an order late yesterday to no longer prevent Mountain Coal Company from using an illegally bulldozed road and carving more drill pads into the roadless area.

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Lawsuit Seeks to Protect Arizona’s Verde River From Ravages of Illegal Grazing

September 17, 2020

PHOENIX― The Center for Biological Diversity and Maricopa Audubon sued the U.S. Forest Service and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today to stop widespread damage from cattle grazing along the Verde River, its tributaries and streambanks.

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Lawsuit Launched to Seek New Critical Habitat for Endangered Mount Graham Red Squirrels

September 16, 2020

TUCSON, Ariz.— The Center for Biological Diversity and Maricopa Audubon today filed a notice of intent to sue the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to expand critical habitat for Arizona’s highly endangered Mount Graham red squirrels.

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More Than 17,000 Rare Nevada Wildflowers Destroyed

September 16, 2020

LAS VEGAS— Conservationists discovered over the weekend that someone had dug up and destroyed more than 17,000 Tiehm’s buckwheat plants, a rare Nevada wildflower the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said this summer may warrant protection under the Endangered Species Act.

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Trump Administration Launches New Assault on Alaska’s Tongass Old-growth Forest

September 4, 2020

JUNEAU, Alaska— The Trump administration announced plans today for a massive timber sale that would destroy more than 5,100 acres of critical old-growth habitat in the Tongass National Forest in Southeast Alaska.

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SEC Complaint Charges Misleading Claims by Australian Company Over Nevada Mine

September 1, 2020

LAS VEGAS— The Center for Biological Diversity filed a complaint with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission today asserting that the Australian mining company Ioneer provided materially misleading statements to investors.

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Forest Service Plan Would Fast-track Fracking on National Forests, Grasslands

August 31, 2020

WASHINGTON— The U.S. Forest Service released a proposal today that would fast-track fracking and drilling across the country’s 192 million acres of national forests and grasslands.

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Lawsuit Targets Forest Service Failure to Protect Endangered Mouse, Streamside Meadow Areas in New Mexico’s Sacramento Mountains

August 27, 2020

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.— The Center for Biological Diversity sued the U.S. Forest Service today to challenge its failure to protect streamside meadows in New Mexico’s Sacramento Mountains from cattle. The areas are critical habitat for the endangered New Mexico meadow jumping mouse.

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Lawsuit: Trump Administration’s Massive Powder River Basin Coal Plan Violates Court Order

August 27, 2020

GREAT FALLS, Mont.— Conservation groups sued the Trump administration today to challenge a massive Powder River Basin coal-mining plan the groups say ignores alternatives to coal, oil and gas leasing and fails to publicly acknowledge the harms from coal combustion, violating federal law and a 2018 court order.

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Lawsuit Targets Trump Administration Fossil Fuel Plan in Colorado ‘Climate Hot Spot’

August 19, 2020

DENVER— Climate groups sued the Trump administration today over its plan to expand drilling, fracking and mining across 1.7 million acres of public lands in southwestern Colorado, one of the fastest-warming regions in the nation.

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Company Puts Massive Nevada Gold Mine Expansion on Hold

August 5, 2020

RENO, Nev.— Nevada Gold Mines has temporarily suspended plans to expand the Long Canyon Mine in northeast Nevada and says it will conduct hydrologic studies to address concerns that the expansion would dry up nearby springs.

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Lawsuit Challenges Mining Permits Near Boundary Waters Wilderness in Minnesota

August 5, 2020

WASHINGTON— Conservation groups sued the Trump administration today over its decision to renew 13 prospecting permits that could allow Twin Metals to significantly expand its proposed sulfide-ore copper mine at the edge of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness in Minnesota.

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Feinstein-Daines Wildfire Bill Would Evade Environmental Laws, Compromise Community Protection

August 5, 2020

WASHINGTON― Sens. Diane Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Steve Daines (R-Mont.) introduced legislation yesterday that would fast-track unsustainable logging, increase wildfire risk and jeopardize community safety. The measure stands in stark contrast to sensible, science-based legislation sponsored by Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), which would help communities in fire-prone areas without backcountry logging.

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Lawsuit Challenges Nearly $28 Million in Public Funding for Utah Oil Railway

August 4, 2020

SALT LAKE CITY― Conservation groups sued the Utah Permanent Community Impact Fund Board today for granting $27.9 million in public money to a proposed railway that would move oil from the Uinta Basin to refineries in other states.

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Lawsuit Challenges Trump Administration’s Approval of Mining Road Through Alaska National Park

August 4, 2020

ANCHORAGE, Alaska— Nine groups sued the Trump administration today to challenge its approval of a commercial gravel road that would destroy, degrade and pollute Arctic land and water and threaten the health of wildlife and people across a broad region of Alaska’s southern Brooks Range.

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Feds Urged to Deny Third Arizona Pumped-storage Project Threatening Humpback Chub, Little Colorado River

July 30, 2020

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz.— The Center for Biological Diversity urged the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission today to deny a preliminary permit application for a massive water-pumping project on the Little Colorado River, which provides water for one of the West’s most endangered fish.

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Legal Petition Urges U.S. Forest Service to Protect Native Bees, Stop Rubber-stamping Commercial Beehives on Federal Lands

July 29, 2020

WASHINGTON— Conservation groups filed a formal legal petition today urging the U.S. Forest Service to stop allowing the placement of hundreds of commercial honeybee hives on national forest lands without proper environmental review.

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Lawsuit Challenges Trump Administration’s Order Opening Public Lands to Coal Leasing

July 20, 2020

GREAT FALLS, Mont.— A coalition of states, conservation organizations and the Northern Cheyenne Tribe launched a new challenge today to the Trump administration’s decision to open millions of acres of public land to new coal leasing and mining.

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Federal Court Rejects Trump Administration Cancellation of Methane Pollution Rule

July 16, 2020

SAN FRANCISCO― A federal judge late yesterday reinstated the Bureau of Land Management’s 2016 methane waste rule, aimed at protecting people and the climate from methane waste and pollution from oil and gas extraction on public lands. The ruling is the third defeat for the Trump administration’s efforts to suspend, delay or repeal the rule.

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Endangered Species Protections Sought for Rare Wolf in Southeast Alaska

July 15, 2020

SITKA, Alaska— The Center for Biological Diversity, Alaska Rainforest Defenders and Defenders of Wildlife petitioned the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today to give Endangered Species Act protections to the Alexander Archipelago wolf in Southeast Alaska.

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Lawsuit Filed to Ensure Water for Rare Nevada Fish

July 13, 2020

LAS VEGAS— The Center for Biological Diversity sued the Nevada state engineer today for allowing groundwater pumping that reduces spring flows and endangers the rare Moapa dace.

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Lawsuit Launched to Protect Endangered Wildlife in California Redwood Forest

July 9, 2020

GUALALA, Calif.— Conservation groups today filed a formal notice of intent to sue the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection and a timber company for failing to protect threatened and endangered fish, birds and frogs from a redwood logging project near northern California’s Gualala River.

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Understanding Protects Endangered Owls From Arizona, New Mexico Forest Projects

July 8, 2020

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz.— A new understanding will ensure that a pending lawsuit is dropped and that forest thinning projects in six national forests in Arizona and New Mexico will better protect endangered Mexican spotted owls.

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California Coastal Commission Orders Oceano Dunes to Remain Closed to Vehicles to Protect Nesting Shorebirds

July 8, 2020

OCEANO, Calif.— The California Coastal Commission has ordered State Parks officials to keep significant portions of Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area closed to vehicles and camping through the end of September to protect western snowy plovers.

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Nevada Court Protects Bi-state Sage Grouse From Off-road Vehicles

July 7, 2020

RENO, Nev.ꟷ In a decisive win for bi-state sage grouse, the Nevada District Court today denied off-roaders’ attempts to gut protections for the imperiled bird in the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest.

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Prescott National Forest Withdraws Approval of Hassayampa River Gold Mine

July 2, 2020

PRESCOTT, Ariz.— The Prescott National Forest today withdrew its decision to proceed with a controversial mine, the River Bend Placer Mine project, on the Hassayampa River. The withdrawal comes after the Center for Biological Diversity delivered a forceful objection to the project’s impacts on the globally imperiled Phillip’s agave (Agave phillipsiana), a rare plant domesticated by Native Americans centuries ago and farmed by them on the site of the mine between 500 and 1,000 years ago.

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House Democrats Set to Give 850,000 Acres of Nevada Wildlife Refuge to Military

July 1, 2020

LAS VEGAS — In a stunning development in the ongoing controversy over proposed military bombing range expansion in Nevada, the Democrat-led House Armed Services Committee today approved an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act that would give the U.S. Air Force jurisdiction over 850,000 acres currently managed as a wildlife refuge.

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Trump Administration Abandons Hammond Ranches Appeal in Reprieve for Oregon Wildlife, Public Lands

June 19, 2020

PORTLAND, Ore.— Livestock grazing won’t be allowed this year on four eastern Oregon allotments formerly grazed by Hammond Ranches. The Trump administration recently abandoned its appeal of a 2019 court ruling overturning then-Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke’s decision to renew the father and son’s grazing permit.

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Lawsuit Launched to Compel Trump Administration to Protect Bi-state Sage Grouse

June 17, 2020

SAN FRANCISCO― Conservation groups filed a formal notice today of their intent to sue the Trump administration for failing to protect an imperiled bird, the bi-state sage grouse, under the Endangered Species Act despite ongoing population declines.

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Nevada Takes Important Step to Protect Endangered Fish

June 15, 2020

LAS VEGAS, Nev.— The Nevada state engineer today restricted groundwater pumping from a remote desert groundwater basin, throwing a lifeline to an endangered fish and crippling plans for a sprawling planned community 50 miles northeast of Las Vegas.

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Trump Administration Plan to Graze 24 Million Acres in Nevada Could Worsen Wildfire Risk

June 11, 2020

RENO, Nev.― The Trump administration wants to allow intensive livestock grazing on 24 million acres of public land in Nevada ― roughly 10% of Bureau of Land Management land ― in an effort to reduce wildfire risk, despite studies that show grazing increases fuel for fires.

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Lawsuit Filed to Force Trump Administration to Protect Arizona’s Mount Graham Red Squirrel From Extinction

June 11, 2020

TUCSON, Ariz.— Conservation groups sued the Trump administration Wednesday to force two federal agencies to comply with the Endangered Species Act and protect the imperiled Mount Graham red squirrel in southeastern Arizona from extinction.

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Court Rejects Trump Administration’s Illegal Land Swap to Bulldoze Alaska’s Izembek National Wildlife Refuge

June 2, 2020

ANCHORAGE, Alaska― A federal court late Monday shut down the Interior Department’s second attempt at an illegal land exchange with the King Cove Corporation to put a road through vital protected wetlands in Izembek National Wildlife Refuge.

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Appeal Targets Mining Permits Near Boundary Waters Wilderness in Minnesota

May 27, 2020

DULUTH, Minn.— Conservation groups today challenged the Trump administration’s decision to renew 13 prospecting permits that could allow Twin Metals to expand its proposed sulfide-ore copper mine at the edge of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, in northeastern Minnesota.

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Trump Administration Again OKs Oil Drilling in California’s Carrizo Plain National Monument

May 26, 2020

BAKERSFIELD, Calif.― On the eve of a holiday weekend and during a global pandemic, the Trump administration last week approved a new oil well and pipeline in Carrizo Plain National Monument. It would be the first well drilled in the monument since it was established in 2001.

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Decades-long Campaign Forces Nevada Board to Kill Huge Las Vegas Groundwater Pipeline

May 21, 2020

LAS VEGAS— A 31-year struggle to stop a massive groundwater pipeline development came to a stunning conclusion today when the Southern Nevada Water Authority board voted to terminate permitting and end its pursuit of the project.

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Nevada Urged to Protect Rare Wildflower As Mine Permitting Ramps Up

May 19, 2020

LAS VEGAS— Ten conservation groups and a renowned botanist urged the Nevada Department of Conservation and Natural Resources today to immediately review whether the imperiled Tiehm’s buckwheat wildflower should be protected under state law. The department agreed to protect it more than six months ago.

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Trump’s Border Wall Would End Jaguar Recovery, Bulldoze Sky Island Mountains

May 14, 2020

TUCSON, Ariz,— The Trump administration’s latest border wall plan, which would wall off the last jaguar migration paths and bulldoze Arizona’s Sky Island mountains, has drawn opposition from thousands of people across the country.

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Lawsuit Targets Arch Coal’s Illegal Air Pollution at Colorado Coal Mine

May 12, 2020

DENVER— Conservation groups sued Arch Coal today over illegal pollution at the company’s West Elk coal mine in western Colorado. The mine is the single-largest industrial source of methane pollution in the state.

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Objections Filed Over Massive National Forest Logging, Road-building Project in Wyoming

May 12, 2020

LARAMIE, Wyo.— Conservation groups filed official objections Monday that challenge one of the largest logging and road-building projects in Wyoming’s history, the Landscape Analysis Vegetation, or LaVA, project on the Medicine Bow National Forest in southern Wyoming.

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Lawsuit Challenges Trump Administration’s $7.2 Billion Transfer for Border Wall Construction

May 12, 2020

WASHINGTON — Conservation groups today sued the Trump administration for taking $7.2 billion from the Department of Defense for border wall construction without congressional approval. The planned barriers will wall off all remaining jaguar corridors along the U.S.-Mexico border.

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Forest Service Trims Colorado Logging Project After Conservation Groups Object

May 8, 2020

GUNNISON, Colo.— The U.S. Forest Service trimmed more than 9,000 acres from a timber management project in the Gunnison National Forest after conservation groups objected to the proposal and the agency admitted that its analysis of the additional acres failed to comply with the law.

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Lawsuit Targets Toxic Copper Mine Threatening Minnesota’s Boundary Waters Wilderness

May 6, 2020

WASHINGTON― Conservation groups sued the Trump administration today over its May 2019 renewal of two mineral leases that pave the way for a massive copper mine at the edge of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness in northeastern Minnesota.

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Utah Oil Industry Asks Governor for Bailout in Midst of Pandemic

May 1, 2020

SALT LAKE CITY― The Utah Petroleum Association is asking Utah Gov. Gary Herbert to lift public health protections and financial requirements for the oil and gas industry because of the pandemic, according to a letter released today by the Center for Biological Diversity.

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New Drone Footage Shows Damage From Trump’s Wall in Remote Arizona Wildlands

April 28, 2020

TUCSON, Ariz.— New drone footage shows border-wall construction blasting through a wildlife refuge and mountain range in one of the most remote regions of the United States, along a Mexican UNESCO biosphere reserve. The footage was taken by the Center for Biological Diversity.

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Trump Working Group Calls for Uranium Industry Handout, Slashing Laws, Public-lands Protections

April 23, 2020

WASHINGTON— President Trump’s Nuclear Fuel Working Group today recommended that the government purchase domestically mined uranium, slash environmental laws and regulations, and lift public-lands protections to bolster sagging uranium mining industry. Those public lands protections include bans on uranium mining near Grand Canyon National Park and other public lands.

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New Mexico Delegation Must Support People, Oppose Big Oil Bailout

April 20, 2020

SANTA FE, N.M.— Indigenous, community and conservation groups called on New Mexico’s congressional delegation today to oppose bailing out fossil fuel companies with emergency aid during the coronavirus pandemic.

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Nevada Water Officials to Abandon Appeal of Massive Las Vegas Pipeline Project

April 16, 2020

LAS VEGAS— The Southern Nevada Water Authority announced today it won’t appeal a recent court loss denying water rights for its massive groundwater pipeline development project.

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Alexander Archipelago Wolves Need Urgent Help Following Record Killings in Alaska’s Tongass National Forest

April 15, 2020

JUNEAU, Alaska― Conservation groups today called on the U.S. Forest Service to take immediate steps to protect Alexander Archipelago wolves on Prince of Wales Island in Alaska’s Tongass National Forest following word that 97 percent of the most recent estimated population was killed this past trapping season.

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State Agency Recommends Advancing Protection for California’s Joshua Trees

April 13, 2020

SACRAMENTO, Calif.— The California Department of Fish and Wildlife today recommended that western Joshua trees move toward protection under the state’s Endangered Species Act. The action came in response to a petition from the Center for Biological Diversity.

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Trump Administration Plan Expands Fossil Fuel Extraction Across Southwestern Colorado

April 9, 2020

DENVER― The Trump administration today announced the release of its final plan to expand drilling and fracking and other fossil fuel extraction across southwestern Colorado for the next two decades, threatening organic agriculture, recreation and endangered species while undermining the state’s climate law. It will be published in the Federal Register on Friday.

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Lawsuit Targets Grazing Damage to Arizona’s San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area

April 8, 2020

TUCSON, Ariz.— Conservation groups sued the Trump administration Tuesday for failing to protect the San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area from livestock grazing’s damage.

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Judge Allows Lawsuit Challenging Trump’s Emergency Border Wall Declaration to Proceed

April 2, 2020

WASHINGTON— A federal judge today blocked the Trump administration’s effort to dismiss a lawsuit filed by conservation groups over the president’s emergency declaration to pay for his border walls.

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Trump Administration Denies Endangered Species Protection to Bi-state Sage Grouse

March 30, 2020

RENO, Nev.— The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service denied protection today to the highly imperiled bi-state sage grouse under the Endangered Species Act despite ongoing declines in the bird’s population.

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New Border Wall Segments Would End U.S. Jaguar Recovery

March 17, 2020

TUCSON, Ariz.— The Trump administration’s latest border-wall plan will wall off all remaining jaguar corridors across the U.S.-Mexico border. The Department of Homeland Security announced Monday that it will waive dozens of environmental and public health laws to fast-track border wall construction in Arizona, California and Texas.

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Lawsuit Launched to Protect Arizona’s Verde River From Ravages of Grazing

March 16, 2020

TUCSON― The Center for Biological Diversity filed notice today of its intent to sue the U.S. Forest Service for allowing livestock to inflict severe, widespread damage on Arizona’s Verde River and its tributaries and streambanks. The livestock grazing violates the Endangered Species Act, Forest Service guidelines, forest-management plans and grazing contracts.

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Court Stalls Fracking Leases in Ohio’s Only National Forest

March 13, 2020

COLUMBUS, Ohio― A federal judge today stalled oil and gas leasing in Ohio’s Wayne National Forest, ruling that the Trump administration failed to consider threats to public health, endangered species and watersheds before opening more than 40,000 acres of the forest for fracking.

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Lawsuit Aims to Save San Pedro River, Slow Groundwater Pumping Tied to Arizona Military Base

March 13, 2020

TUCSON, Ariz.― Conservation groups sued the Trump administration today to prevent further damage to Arizona’s San Pedro River and its endangered species from excessive groundwater pumping in the Fort Huachuca area, including nearby Sierra Vista.

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Federal Court Rules Against Massive Old-Growth Rainforest Logging Plan in Alaska

March 11, 2020

JUNEAU, Alaska― A federal judge today rejected the Trump administration’s enormous commercial timber harvest and road-building plan for Prince of Wales Island in the Tongass National Forest of southeast Alaska.

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Trump Move to Gut NEPA, Bedrock U.S. Environmental Law, Would Slash Protection for Air, Water, Wildlife

March 10, 2020

WASHINGTON— The Center for Biological Diversity joined hundreds of conservation groups to file formal comments today with the Trump administration opposing its plans to gut the rules that govern the landmark National Environmental Policy Act.

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Seismic Oil Activities in Big Cypress Had Adverse, Degrading Effect, Army Corps Finds

March 6, 2020

NAPLES, Fla.— The Burnett Oil Company has done extensive damage to “high quality wet prairie and dwarf cypress” forests in the Big Cypress National Preserve during its seismic testing for oil and gas, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said today, in a letter in which it notified the company that future activities would be regulated under the Clean Water Act:

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Appeals Court: Trump Administration Wrongly Opened 5,000 Acres of Colorado Forest to Coal Mining

March 2, 2020

DENVER— A federal appeals court today ruled that the U.S. Forest Service broke the law by failing to consider an alternative that would protect the Gunnison National Forest’s Pilot Knob area from coal mining. The decision by the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals directs the lower court to vacate an exception that allowed the Forest Service to approve coal mining in roadless forests in the Gunnison River’s North Fork.

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Judge Voids Trump Oil and Gas Lease Sales on Nearly 1 Million Acres of Sage Grouse Habitat

February 27, 2020

BOISE, Idaho― A federal judge today rejected a Trump administration policy to sharply curtail public participation in oil and gas leasing decisions on public lands and voided nearly 1 million acres leased under the policy. The ruling applies to lease sales in greater sage-grouse habitat across 67 million acres in 11 Western states.

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More Than 95 Conservation Groups Oppose Trillion Trees Act

February 25, 2020

WASHINGTON— More than 95 conservation and climate change groups sent a letter today to the House Natural Resources Committee opposing the Trillion Trees Act, saying the bill would ramp up logging, increase carbon emissions and worsen wildfire risk.

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Wednesday Border Wall Action Planned at Arizona’s Organ Pipe National Monument

February 25, 2020

LUKEVILLE, Ariz.— Activists will gather Wednesday morning near Monument Hill to protest the Trump administration’s blasting of a sacred mountain to build the border wall through Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument, a UNESCO biosphere reserve.

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Analysis: Prescott’s Water Plan Promotes Sprawl, Threatens Arizona’s Upper Verde River

February 24, 2020

PRESCOTT, Ariz.— A new Center for Biological Diversity analysis shows the city of Prescott’s proposed water policy would accelerate sprawl development and dramatically reduce the upper Verde River’s annual water flow.

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Groups Urge Arizona Sen. McSally to Protect Grand Canyon From Uranium Mining

February 24, 2020

PHOENIX— The National Congress of American Indians and conservation groups today urged Sen. Martha McSally (R-Ariz.) to cosponsor the Grand Canyon Centennial Protection Act, which permanently bans new uranium mining across 1 million acres of public land around Grand Canyon National Park.

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Feds Urged to Deny Permit for 200-foot Dam on San Francisco River on Arizona-New Mexico Border

February 21, 2020

PHOENIX— Conservation groups and business leaders urged a federal commission today to deny a preliminary permit for a 200-foot-tall dam planned for the San Francisco River at the Arizona-New Mexico border. The San Francisco River Pumped Storage Project, proposed within protected areas of two national forests, would damage or destroy dozens of miles of critical habitat for five endangered species.

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Lawsuit Targets Forest Service Failure to Protect Endangered Mouse, Riparian Areas in Arizona’s White Mountains

February 20, 2020

TUCSON― Conservation groups filed suit today to protect meadows and streams in eastern Arizona’s White Mountains from cows, horses and elk. The riparian areas are home to the critically endangered New Mexico meadow jumping mouse.

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Utah Coalition to Protest Misuse of Public Money on Fossil Fuel Projects

February 20, 2020

SALT LAKE CITY― Community advocates will demonstrate Friday outside the Seven County Infrastructure Coalition board meeting to protest the misuse of public funds on fossil fuel projects. Members of the Utah Clean Infrastructure Coalition will also speak at the board meeting.

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Trump Administration Announces New Plans to Slash Sage Grouse Protections in Seven Western States

February 19, 2020

BOISE, Idaho― The Trump administration announced today that it will release new plans to slash protections for the dwindling greater sage grouse, attempting to satisfy a federal court ruling that blocked its earlier attempt.

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Legal Petition Aims to Protect Wyoming’s Path of the Pronghorn From Massive Drilling Project

February 19, 2020

CASPER, Wyo.— Conservation groups today filed a legal petition challenging the Trump administration’s plan to allow 3,500 new gas wells in southwestern Wyoming. The massive frack-field expansion could block the ancient Path of the Pronghorn and prevent access to winter ranges that the animals need to survive.

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Judge Overturns Wildlife Agency’s Approval of Rosemont Copper Mine in Arizona

February 10, 2020

TUCSON, Ariz.— A federal judge today overturned the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s approval of a controversial open-pit copper mine in southern Arizona’s Santa Rita Mountains because of threats to jaguars and other endangered species.

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Trump Administration’s Nevada Lease Sale for Oil and Gas on Public Lands Violates Court Order

February 10, 2020

RENO, Nev.― The Trump administration is violating a judge’s order requiring a 30-day protest period before public lands in sage-grouse habitat are leased out for oil and gas extraction.

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Lawsuit Prompts Suspension of Trump Administration Fracking Leases Threatening Water, Wildlife in Arizona

February 5, 2020

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz.— The Trump administration has suspended 4,200 acres of oil and gas leases on public land in Arizona’s Little Colorado River Valley as part of a joint motion filed in federal court today.

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Sens. Sanders, Merkley Introduce Bill to Ban Fracking Nationwide

February 3, 2020

WASHINGTON— Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) introduced legislation today to immediately ban fracking for oil and gas on all federal public lands onshore and offshore. The bill also would forbid any new federal permits for fossil fuel infrastructure such as pipelines, natural gas export terminals and ethane cracker plants.

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Petition Asks U.S. Supreme Court to Overturn Border-wall Waiver Decisions

January 31, 2020

WASHINGTON— Four conservation groups asked the U.S. Supreme Court today to review federal court rulings that have allowed the Trump administration to waive dozens of environmental, health and safety laws to speed construction of border walls from the Pacific Ocean to the Rio Grande Valley.

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Trump Administration Slashes Protections for Millions of Acres of Streams, Wetlands

January 23, 2020

WASHINGTON— The Trump administration finalized a plan today to slash Clean Water Act protections for streams, rivers and millions of acres of wetlands, allowing those water bodies to be destroyed or polluted without any meaningful restrictions.

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Tusayan, Developers Begin New Push for Massive Grand Canyon Project

January 22, 2020

TUSAYAN, Ariz.— An Italian company has tinkered with its years-old plan to build a sprawling development on the doorstep of Grand Canyon National Park. But the mega-project would be just as dangerous to water resources, wildlife and visitors. It would also flood the night skies of one of the nation’s most iconic national parks.

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Lawsuit Challenges Trump Plan to Frack, Drill 1 Million Acres of California Public Lands, Minerals

January 14, 2020

LOS ANGELES— Conservation groups sued the Trump administration today challenging the last step in the administration’s plan to allow oil drilling and fracking on more than 1 million acres of public lands and minerals in Central California.

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Minnesota Appeals Court Strikes Down PolyMet Copper-sulfide Mine Permit, Orders New Hearing

January 13, 2020

ST. PAUL, Minn.― The Minnesota Court of Appeals overturned state permits today that would allow PolyMet to construct Minnesota’s first copper-sulfide mine, ordering a new hearing before an administrative law judge.

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Lawsuit Challenges Trump Administration’s Failure to Protect Endangered Species From Livestock on Arizona, New Mexico Waterways

January 13, 2020

SILVER CITY, N.M.— The Center for Biological Diversity sued the Trump administration today for failing to prevent livestock from damaging southwestern rivers and streams.

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Trump Administration Attacks National Environmental Policy Act on Bedrock Law’s 50th Anniversary

January 6, 2020

WASHINGTON— The Trump administration will propose this week to gut National Environmental Policy Act rules for conducting environmental reviews of federal activities — changes that will threaten critical safeguards for air, water and wildlife. The proposal will also squelch public participation in federal agency decisions and impose arbitrary time limits on completion of environmental reviews.

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Agreement Protects Rare Nevada Wildflower From Mine Exploration

January 3, 2020

RENO, Nev.— A Center for Biological Diversity lawsuit against the Trump administration has led to an agreement with an Australian mining company that will temporarily protect the habitat of a rare Nevada wildflower.

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Trump EPA Used ‘Emergency’ Loophole to Approve Pesticides Toxic to Bees on 16 Million Acres in 2019

January 2, 2020

WASHINGTON— The Environmental Protection Agency reported today that in 2019 it issued so-called “emergency” approvals to spray neonicotinoids — pesticides the agency itself recognizes as “very highly toxic” to bees — onto more than 16 million acres of crops known to attract bees.

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Forest Service Withdraws Logging Project in West Virginia’s Monongahela National Forest to Spare Endangered Fish

December 20, 2019

ASHEVILLE, N.C.― The U.S. Forest Service this week announced it will withdraw a 2,400-acre logging project in West Virginia’s Monongahela National Forest following objections raised by conservation groups about harm to an endangered fish.

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Court Rejects Trump Administration Renewal of Oregon Ranchers' Grazing Permit

December 20, 2019

PORTLAND, Ore.— A federal judge today overturned the Trump administration’s renewal of the Hammond Ranches’ livestock-grazing permit. The ruling throws out the ranchers’ permit on four allotments in eastern Oregon until the Bureau of Land Management does a proper environmental analysis.

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Conservation Groups Applaud Senate Launch of Grand Canyon Protection Bill

December 20, 2019

WASHINGTON― Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) yesterday introduced the Grand Canyon Centennial Protection Act. The bill will make permanent a ban on new uranium mining on about 1 million acres of public land adjacent to Grand Canyon National Park.

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Senate Bill Rebuffs Military Request for Nevada Wildlife Refuge Takeover

December 20, 2019

LAS VEGAS— Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) introduced legislation today to expand the U.S. Air Force’s Nevada Test and Training Range into the Desert National Wildlife Refuge, but the bill offers a fraction of what the military has requested.

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Lawsuit Launched Over Illegal Air Pollution at Colorado Coal Mine

December 17, 2019

DENVER— Conservation groups filed a formal notice today of their intent to sue Arch Coal for failing to reduce dangerous pollution at its West Elk mine in western Colorado in violation of the Clean Air Act.

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400,000-plus Blast Trump Administration Plan for Old-growth Clearcutting in Alaska’s Tongass National Forest

December 16, 2019

JUNEAU, Alaska― More than 400,000 people and dozens of local tribal, government, business and national recreation groups have flooded the U.S. Forest Service with comments opposing its plan to undo safeguards that prevent clearcutting and road building in Alaska’s Tongass National Forest. The comment period ends Tuesday.

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D.C. Judge to Hear Legal Challenge to Trump’s Border-wall Emergency

December 12, 2019

WASHINGTON— The Center for Biological Diversity will defend its lawsuit Monday challenging President Donald Trump’s emergency declaration to pay for his border wall. The Trump administration is asking a federal judge to dismiss the lawsuit, filed in February with Defenders of Wildlife and Animal Legal Defense Fund.

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Hundreds Expected Saturday at Tucson Border Wall Protest With Rep. Grijalva

December 5, 2019

TUCSON, Ariz.— Arizona leaders and activists will join U.S. Rep. Raúl Grijalva (D.-Ariz.) in Tucson on Saturday to protest President Donald Trump’s border wall. The 30-foot-tall steel bollard wall under construction in Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument and the San Bernardino National Wildlife Refuge will block wildlife migration, destroy archeological sites and imperil endangered species and protected wilderness.

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Legal Filing Challenges Trump Administration Failure to Halt Fossil Fuel Expansion in 20-year Plan for Texas, Kansas, Oklahoma

December 3, 2019

HOUSTON— The Center for Biological Diversity is challenging the Trump administration’s plan to expand federal fossil-fuel extraction in Texas, Kansas and Oklahoma. The new resource management plan would allow leasing and extraction of oil and gas on 4.4 million acres of publicly owned lands and minerals and coal extraction on nearly 1.7 million acres.

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Army Report Reveals Military Base’s Harm to San Pedro River Stretches Back to 2003

December 3, 2019

TUCSON, Ariz.― A previously undisclosed 2010 report commissioned by the U.S. Army showed that groundwater pumping at Fort Huachuca was already causing harm to the San Pedro River and its endangered wildlife in 2003. The report was never given to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which decided in 2014 to approve the base’s groundwater pumping for another decade.

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Groundswell of National Public Opinion Opposes Las Vegas Lands Bill

November 25, 2019

LAS VEGAS— More than 6,000 people from 47 states have sent letters urging the Clark County Commission and Nevada’s congressional delegation to oppose proposed county legislation that sidesteps bedrock environmental laws and endangers the iconic Mojave desert tortoise.

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Legal Filing Shows Proposed Dams Near Grand Canyon Would Decimate Endangered Fish Habitat

November 18, 2019

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz.— The Center for Biological Diversity filed motions with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission today urging denial of preliminary permits for two proposed dams on the Little Colorado River near Grand Canyon National Park. The motions include a new analysis showing the projects would destroy or harm all of the river’s critical habitat for the endangered humpback chub.

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Lawsuit Spurs Trump Administration to Suspend 130 Oil, Gas Leases in Utah

November 12, 2019

SALT LAKE CITY― The Trump administration has pulled 130 oil and gas leases in Utah because the Bureau of Land Management failed to fully analyze greenhouse gas emissions and the potential harm to climate from fossil fuel extraction. It’s the fourth time this year that the agency has suspended leases for drilling and fracking in Utah ― after the leases were sold ― because they violated federal law.

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Ruling Stops Colorado Coal Mine Expansion Threatening Climate, National Forest

November 8, 2019

DENVER— A federal judge blocked the 2,000-acre expansion of a coal mine in the wildlands of Colorado’s Gunnison National Forest today, ordering the Trump administration to consider limiting methane emissions and address potential harm to water and fish.

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Nevada to Launch Review of Rare Wildflower for Possible Enhanced Protections

November 8, 2019

CARSON CITY, Nev.— The Nevada Department of Conservation and Natural Resources will soon begin reviewing whether to give enhanced protections to the imperiled Tiehm’s buckwheat (Eriogonum tiehmii), a rare Nevada wildflower.

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Court Order Forces Trump Administration to Pull Sage-Grouse Habitat From Nevada Oil Auction

November 6, 2019

ELY, Nevada― The Bureau of Land Management has pulled 332,247 acres from a Nov. 12 oil and gas lease auction in western Nevada in response to a court order blocking Trump administration plans that gutted protections for greater sage grouse.

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Saturday Protest Planned to Stop Trump’s Wall at Arizona National Monument

November 6, 2019

LUKEVILLE, Ariz.— Activists will gather Saturday to protest construction of President Donald Trump’s border wall at Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument. The new 30-foot-tall barrier will block the migration of wildlife, destroy archeological sites, and imperil endangered species and wilderness lands.

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Riverside County Unanimously Rejects Sprawl Development Near Joshua Tree National Park

November 6, 2019

RIVERSIDE, Calif.― Community groups and environmental organizations applauded the Riverside County Board of Supervisors’ unanimous vote Tuesday to quash plans for a new city of 20,000 residents near Joshua Tree National Park.

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Federal Plan Endangers Recovery for Dwindling Gunnison Sage Grouse in Colorado, Utah

October 31, 2019

DENVER― Following a major decline in the population of Gunnison sage grouse, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today released a brief, vague draft recovery plan that conservation groups say fails to ensure recovery of the threatened species in Colorado and Utah.

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Trump Bulldozes New Wall Through Wildlife Refuge, Jaguar Country

October 31, 2019

DOUGLAS, Ariz.— New border-wall construction in southeastern Arizona is imperiling the San Bernardino National Wildlife Refuge, and encroaching into an active jaguar movement corridor where the jaguar known as “Sombra” most likely crossed the border into the United States.

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Trump Plans to Open 1 Million More Acres of California Public Land to Drilling, Fracking

October 31, 2019

BAKERSFIELD, Calif.— The Trump administration today announced a proposal to open more than 1 million acres of public lands and minerals in central California to oil drilling and fracking. The plan, first floated in draft form in April, would end a more than five-year moratorium on leasing federal public land in the state to oil companies.

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Arizonans Celebrate House Passage of Grand Canyon Centennial Protection Act

October 30, 2019

PHOENIX― The U.S. House of Representatives today passed the Grand Canyon Centennial Protection Act by an overwhelming margin. The bill is sponsored by House Natural Resources Chairman Raúl M. Grijalva (D.-Ariz.) and cosponsored and supported by Arizona U.S. Reps. Tom O’Halleran, Ruben Gallego, Ann Kirkpatrick and Greg Stanton.

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Lawsuit Aims to Protect Rare Nevada Wildflower From Exploratory Mining

October 30, 2019

LAS VEGAS— The Center for Biological Diversity sued the Trump administration today to protect the world’s only population of Tiehm’s buckwheat (Eriogonum tiehmii) from harm related to mineral exploration and a proposed open-pit mine.

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Lawsuit Challenges Trump Administration’s California Fracking Plan

October 30, 2019

SAN FRANCISCO— Conservation groups today sued the Trump administration to challenge its Oct. 4 decision to allow fracking and drilling on 725,500 acres of public lands and mineral estate across California’s Central Coast and the Bay Area.

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Theme for 2019 All Souls Procession: Wildlife Endangered by Border Wall

October 29, 2019

TUCSON, Ariz.— Jaguars, owls, fish, bats and other endangered species threatened by the border wall in Arizona will be the official theme of the ushers and ambassadors of this year’s 30th annual All Souls Procession on Sunday, Nov. 3.

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Court Blocks Trump Administration Plans to Strip Sage-grouse Protections

October 16, 2019

BOISE, Idaho— A federal judge today blocked Trump administration plans allowing expanded drilling, mining, livestock grazing and other destructive activities across 51 million acres of greater sage-grouse habitat in seven western states: Idaho, Wyoming, Utah, Colorado, Nevada, California and Oregon.

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Trump Administration Paves Way for Old-growth Clearcutting in Alaska’s Tongass National Forest

October 15, 2019

JUNEAU, Alaska― The Trump administration announced plans today to gut longstanding protections against logging and road building in the Tongass National Forest, a cherished old-growth temperate rainforest in Southeast Alaska and homelands of the Tlingit, Haida and Tsimshian people. A coalition that includes Alaska Native people and Alaska-based and national organizations opposes the U.S. Forest Service plan, which comes weeks after revelations that President Trump exerted pressure to allow new clearcutting in the Tongass.

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Endangered Species Protections Sought for Rare Nevada Wildflower Imperiled by Mining

October 8, 2019

LAS VEGAS— The Center for Biological Diversity submitted an emergency petition to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on Monday to protect Tiehm’s buckwheat (Eriogonum tiehmii) under the Endangered Species Act. The plant is threatened by mineral exploration and a proposed open-pit mine.

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Lawsuit Targets Feds’ Failure to Consider Colorado Fracking’s Climate Harm

October 8, 2019

DENVER— Conservation groups sued the Trump administration today to require an analysis of the climate risk from an oil and gas extraction plan covering nearly a million acres of public lands and minerals in western Colorado. The area surrounds the Bureau of Land Management’s new headquarters.

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Opponents of Proposed Resolution Copper Mine, Land Exchange Hold News Conference Before Public Hearing

October 7, 2019

QUEEN VALLEY, Ariz.— The Apache Stronghold and allies will deliver public comments Tuesday opposing the Resolution Copper mine, which would destroy a sacred site for the Apache people. The group will hold a news conference before Tuesday’s public hearing, hosted by the U.S. Forest Service to gather public comments on an environmental analysis of the project.

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Lawsuit Seeks to Include Climate Change in Glen Canyon Operations Plan

October 3, 2019

PRESCOTT, Ariz.— Three environmental groups launched a legal battle this week to force the required examination of climate change science in the federal management of Glen Canyon Dam and the Colorado River.

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Trump’s Forest Service Blasted for Plans to Weaken Protections for Imperiled Greater Sage Grouse

October 2, 2019

HAILEY, Idaho― Conservation groups submitted formal objections Tuesday to U.S. Forest Service plans that would further weaken greater sage-grouse protections despite plummeting grouse populations in the West.

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New Dam Proposal Would Flood Little Colorado River Gorge Near Grand Canyon

September 26, 2019

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz.—The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has accepted a preliminary permit application for a 24-story dam spanning the Little Colorado River gorge on the Navajo Nation. The proposed project is located about 6 river miles upstream from the confluence with the Colorado River in Grand Canyon National Park.

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Federal Appeals Court to Hear Argument on Colorado Coal Mine Expansion

September 25, 2019

DENVER— The 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals will hear oral arguments Thursday from conservation groups seeking to protect approximately 4,900 acres of the Gunnison National Forest in Colorado from coal mine development.

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Senate Republicans OK More Funding for Trump’s Destructive Border Wall

September 24, 2019

WASHINGTON— Senate Republicans want to spend $5 billion next year for more border-wall construction. Their 2020 spending bill would fund more than 100 additional miles of border wall without any meaningful review of potential harm to wildlife, the environment or borderland communities.

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Climate Lawsuit Targets 130 Oil Leases on Public Lands in Utah

September 12, 2019

SALT LAKE CITY— Conservation groups sued the Trump administration today for failing to consider the climate pollution from 130 oil and gas leases spanning 175,500 acres of public lands in Utah.

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Lawsuit Targets Minnesota’s PolyMet Copper-Sulfide Mine Permit

September 10, 2019

ST. PAUL, Minn.―Conservation groups sued the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers today to challenge a key water permit authorizing the PolyMet open-pit copper-sulfide mine to move forward. The mine would destroy 1,000 acres of wetlands and more than 1,700 acres of critical wildlife habitat in northern Minnesota's Superior National Forest.

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Conservation Groups Blast Draft Forest Service Rule to Gut Bedrock Environmental Law

August 26, 2019

WASHINGTON― Conservation and public-interest groups today submitted formal opposition to a proposed Trump administration rule that would fundamentally change long-held environmental practices and allow for the sweeping destruction of national forests across the country.

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Flooding, Pollution Threat Prompts Call for Uranium Mine Closure Near Grand Canyon

August 20, 2019

GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK, Ariz.— Conservation groups called on Arizona officials today to close a uranium mine near Grand Canyon National Park’s South Rim, citing severe and ongoing flooding that threatens to pollute deep aquifers that feed the canyon’s springs. Original mine approvals dismissed flooding as a “remote” possibility.

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Lawsuit Challenges New Trump Administration Land Swap to Bulldoze Alaska’s Izembek National Wildlife Refuge

August 7, 2019

ANCHORAGE, Alaska— Conservation groups sued the Trump administration today to challenge a land-swap deal with King Cove Corporation aimed at putting a road through the heart of Izembek National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska.

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Injunction Sought to Halt Trump’s Wall in Arizona

August 6, 2019

WASHINGTON— Conservation groups today asked a federal court to block construction of President Donald Trump’s border wall through protected wilderness in Arizona until a judge rules on a pending lawsuit.

Read more.

Federal Judge Halts Construction of Rosemont Mine in Arizona

July 31, 2019

TUCSON, Ariz.— A federal judge today overturned the U.S. Forest Service’s approval of a controversial open-pit copper mine in southern Arizona’s Santa Rita Mountains, citing the agency’s “inherently flawed analysis from the inception of the proposed Rosemont Mine.” The ruling blocks Toronto-based Hudbay Minerals from beginning construction on the proposed $1.9 billion mine in the Coronado National Forest, 30 miles southeast of Tucson.

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Appeal Challenges Trump Administration’s Approval of Nevada Oil Well

July 30, 2019

RENO, Nev.— Conservation groups today challenged a recently approved oil well in central Nevada, saying the Trump administration’s Bureau of Land Management skirted federal law by failing to conduct a thorough environmental analysis. This is the agency’s first approval of a new oil well in Nevada in almost two years.

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Protest Challenges Trump’s Fossil-fuel Expansion Plan Threatening Southwestern Colorado

July 29, 2019

DENVER― Conservation groups protested a Trump administration plan today that would expand federal fossil-fuel development in southwestern Colorado, threatening climate, wildlife and recreation. The Uncompahgre Resource Management Plan would allow increased fracking, which will threaten organic agriculture and endangered species and undermine the state’s new climate law.

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Lawsuit Challenges Political Meddling in EPA Public Records Changes

July 24, 2019

WASHINGTON— The Center for Biological Diversity and the Environmental Integrity Project sued the Trump administration today over sweeping changes to how the Environmental Protection Agency handles public-records requests under the Freedom of Information Act. The EPA’s new rule will take effect Friday.

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Lawsuit Launched to Force Forest Service to Protect Endangered Species, Remove Livestock From Arizona, New Mexico Waterways

July 17, 2019

SILVER CITY, N.M.— The Center for Biological Diversity filed a notice today of its intent to sue the U.S. Forest Service for allowing livestock to trample southwestern rivers and streams, which destroys wildlife habitat and threatens rare species. The grazing violates the Endangered Species Act and an earlier legal settlement.

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Court Partially Blocks Summer Grazing on Sensitive Oregon Public Lands

July 16, 2019

PORTLAND, Ore.― Conservation groups today won a partial preliminary injunction blocking summer grazing by Hammond Ranches on one of two public lands allotments with sensitive ecological values. A federal judge ordered reduced grazing with monthly monitoring on the other allotment.

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Appeal Upheld in Challenge to Oil Drilling in California's Carrizo Plain National Monument

July 16, 2019

BAKERSFIELD, Calif.― The California Bureau of Land Management has agreed with conservation groups that plans for a new oil well and pipeline in Carrizo Plain National Monument failed to comply with federal environmental laws. The July 12 decision, announced today, said the local BLM office must consider potential harm to California condors, other imperiled wildlife and the climate.

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Lawsuit Challenges Fracking Leases Threatening Northern Arizona Groundwater

July 15, 2019

PHOENIX— Conservation groups sued the Trump administration today for leasing 4,200 acres of public lands for oil and gas extraction in Arizona’s Little Colorado River basin without any new environmental review.

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Lawsuit Challenges Trump Administration’s OK of California Logging That Will Destroy Big Trees, Condor Roosting Sites

July 10, 2019

LOS ANGELES― Conservation groups sued the Trump administration today to halt a logging project in a roadless area of Los Padres National Forest that would destroy prime habitat for endangered California condors. Because of the project’s remote location, it also would fail to protect communities from wildfires as federal officials have claimed.

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Lawsuit Seeks Court Order to Stop Colorado Coal Mine Expansion Threatening Climate, National Forest

July 3, 2019

DENVER— Five conservation groups sued the Trump administration late Tuesday and called on a federal judge to block approval of Arch Coal’s West Elk mine expansion, which would invade the wildlands of western Colorado’s Gunnison National Forest.

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Federal Court Orders Environmental Impact Study for California’s Richardson Grove Highway Project

June 28, 2019

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif.— A federal court judge ruled Thursday that Caltrans must do a detailed environmental impact statement on the controversial Richardson Grove highway-widening project. The ruling, in U.S. District Court in San Francisco, follows a May decision that halted the Caltrans project.

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Trump Plan for Southwestern Colorado Pushes Fossil Fuel Expansion, Undermines State’s Climate Law

June 28, 2019

DENVER― The Trump administration released a resource management plan today that would expand federal fossil fuel development across a huge swath of southwestern Colorado, threatening a growing organic agriculture hub and undermining the state’s new climate law. The federal administration’s plans directly contradict Colorado’s new law calling for steep cuts in greenhouse gas emissions, a 50 percent cut by 2030 and a 90 percent reduction by 2050.

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Federal Court Rejects Trump Administration’s Approval of California’s Cadiz Water Pipeline

June 21, 2019

LOS ANGELES— A federal court today ruled that the Trump administration violated the law when it greenlighted plans to construct a 43-mile-long pipeline through Mojave Trails National Monument and other public land in southern California.

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Trump Administration’s Eastern Colorado Plan Undermines State’s Climate Law, Triples Oil, Gas Pollution

June 21, 2019

DENVER― The Trump administration today released plans that could sharply increase federal oil and gas production in eastern Colorado, including the Front Range, undermining the state’s new climate law that calls for steep cuts in greenhouse gas emissions.

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Lawsuit Seeks Info on Trump Administration Eliminating Environmental Grades

June 17, 2019

WASHINGTON— The Center for Biological Diversity sued the Environmental Protection Agency today for failing to release public records on why it abruptly stopped issuing public grades on environmental reviews under the National Environmental Policy Act.

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Utah Board OKs $21.4 Million in Public Money for Oil-train Railway

June 13, 2019

VERNAL, Utah— A Utah board today approved spending $21.4 million in public money for a railway to move oil from the Uinta Basin to refineries in other states, despite concerns that the funding is illegal.

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Groups Blast Plan to Restart Public-lands Coal Leasing

June 11, 2019

DENVER— Fifty conservation groups sent a letter calling on the Trump administration to restore a 2016 moratorium on new federal coal leasing and plan an orderly and just transition away from coal production on public lands.

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Utah Coalition to Protest Public Financing of Uinta Basin Railway for Oil Trains

June 11, 2019

VERNAL, Utah― Opponents of the proposed Uinta Basin Railway oil-train project will protest in Vernal Thursday to challenge continued funding of the rail line by Utah’s Permanent Community Impact Fund Board.

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Utahns to Protest Gov. Herbert’s Failure to Halt Oil, Gas Leasing Near Great Salt Lake

June 10, 2019

SALT LAKE CITY― Opponents of the Trump administration’s plan to auction off nearly 10,000 acres of public land for oil and gas drilling near the Great Salt Lake will rally Tuesday to protest the lease sale outside Gov. Gary Herbert’s office in the Capitol building.

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Court Blocks Contested Oregon Grazing Permits

June 4, 2019

PORTLAND, Ore.― A federal judge in Oregon today granted conservation groups’ motion to block livestock from using public lands allotments near Burns during the month of June. The temporary restraining order was issued in response to a lawsuit challenging former Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke’s order to reinstate the grazing permits, overriding the 2014 recommendations of the Bureau of Land Management to cancel the permits. The allotments at issue contain important habitat for greater sage grouse and redband trout, and grazing on one of the allotments, Mud Creek, was scheduled to occur later this week.

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Disregarding Climate, Trump Administration Pushes to Re-open Public Lands to Coal Leasing

May 22, 2019

WASHINGTON— The Trump administration today restarted an effort to reopen public lands to new federal coal leasing. In today’s action, the Interior Department responded to a court order overturning its illegal nixing of a nationwide coal leasing moratorium with a highly abbreviated environmental review.

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Rallies in Bakersfield, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara to Oppose Trump's Oil-leasing Plan for California

May 20, 2019

BAKERSFIELD, Calif.— Environmental and community groups joined by elected officials will hold rallies this week to blast the Trump administration’s draft plan to open more than a million acres of public land and mineral estate in central California to oil drilling and fracking. The rallies will precede each of the U.S. Bureau of Land Management’s public hearings in Bakersfield, San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara.

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Lawsuit Challenges Trump Administration Approval of Massive Utah Oil Shale Development

May 16, 2019

BONANZA, Utah— Conservation groups today sued the Trump administration to challenge what would be the nation’s first commercial-scale oil shale mine and processing facility. The lawsuit says officials failed to protect several endangered species when they approved rights-of-way across public lands to provide utilities to the proposed oil shale development.

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Court Order Sought to Stop Rosemont Mine Construction in Arizona

May 16, 2019

TUCSON, Ariz.— Conservation groups and tribes Wednesday asked a federal court to prevent construction from starting on the Rosemont Copper Mine in southern Arizona until a judge rules on pending lawsuits filed by the parties.

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Report: Trump Fracking Leases Top 1 Gigaton of Potential Climate Pollution in Lower 48

May 15, 2019

TUCSON, Ariz.— A new Center for Biological Diversity report shows that the Trump administration is dramatically ramping up oil and gas leases, offering nearly 5 million acres of public lands in the lower 48 states ― most of it in Wyoming and Utah. Those leases, offered as scientists warn that fossil fuels should be rapidly phased out, contain 1 gigaton of potential greenhouse gas pollution.

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Trump Administration Waives Laws to Build 100 Miles of Border Wall Across Arizona National Monument, Wildlife Refuges

May 14, 2019

TUCSON, Ariz.— The Trump administration will waive dozens of environmental and public health laws to speed border-wall construction through federally protected sites in Arizona and California.

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Massive New Mexico Logging Plan Threatens Iconic Owl Stronghold

May 13, 2019

CLOUDCROFT, N.M.― Conservation groups today called on the U.S. Forest Service to revise plans for large-scale commercial logging in southern New Mexico’s Lincoln National Forest. The logging threatens habitat for the imperiled Mexican spotted owl and New Mexico meadow jumping mouse.

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Lawsuit Targets Trump Administration Renewal of Oregon Ranchers' Grazing Permit

May 13, 2019

PORTLAND, Ore.― ­Conservations groups filed suit today challenging former Interior secretary Ryan Zinke’s order to renew grazing permits for Oregon ranchers Dwight and Steven Hammond. Zinke’s January 2019 order, one of his last official acts, came despite the Bureau of Land Management’s 2014 decision to cancel the Hammonds’ privilege to graze on public lands following a series of arson fires.

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Trump Finalizes Plan to Open 725,500 Acres of California's Central Coast to Drilling, Fracking

May 9, 2019

MARINA, Calif.— The Trump administration today finalized a plan to open 725,500 acres of public lands and mineral estate across California’s Central Coast and the Bay Area to new oil and gas drilling. The U.S. Bureau of Land Management plan is an increase of nearly 327,000 acres from the draft proposal prepared under the Obama administration.

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Analysis: Public Overwhelmingly Wants EPA Ban on Wildlife-killing 'Cyanide Bombs'

May 8, 2019

WASHINGTON— More than 99.9 percent of people commenting on a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency proposal to reauthorize sodium cyanide in wildlife-killing devices called M-44s support a ban on these “cyanide bombs,” according to an analysis released today.

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Lawsuit Challenges Trump Administration's Massive Old-growth Timber Sale in Alaska National Forest

May 7, 2019

JUNEAU, Alaska— Eight conservation groups sued the Trump administration today to stop its authorization of the largest logging project in the national forest system in a generation, including thousands of acres of old-growth timber in the Tongass National Forest.

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Federal Court Again Halts Destructive Caltrans Project Through Ancient California Redwoods

May 6, 2019

SAN FRANCISCO— Conservation groups and Humboldt County residents have won a federal court victory halting Caltrans’ controversial Richardson Grove highway-widening project. The project would needlessly harm ancient redwood trees in California’s iconic Richardson Grove State Park along Highway 101 in Humboldt County. The U.S. District Court in San Francisco struck down the Caltrans plan in a 26-page order issued late Friday afternoon.

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