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Once a species is protected by the Endangered Species Act, activities that negatively impact those species could require authorization from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. SWCA tracks threatened and endangered species issues closely and offers the following tips for staying ahead of the game.

As new species become federally listed as threatened or endangered, the potential regulatory liability for project developers increases, exposing new risks in places where those species may not have been a significant issue before.

 

Don’t Panic — Endangered Species Don’t Typically Stop Projects

Nearly all projects that affect protected species can get take authorization from the Service. Only when project impacts would jeopardize the continued existence of the species — or adversely modify officially designated critical habitats — is authorization not available. SWCA scientists can identify where protected species may affect your operations and how project activities can be adjusted to avoid these limiting circumstances.

 

[[{“fid”:”149”,”view_mode”:”media_medium”,”attributes”:{“alt”:”minnow”,”height”:”126”,”width”:”332”,”class”:”media-element file-media-medium”},”fields”:{“format”:”media_medium”,”field_file_image_alt_text[und][0][value]”:”minnow”,”field_file_image_title_text[und][0][value]”:”“,”field_file_alignment[und]”:”img-left”,”field_file_caption[und][0][value]”:”“},”type”:”media”}]]Be Aware of Multiple Compliance Options

When “take” cannot be avoided, there are often a variety of options available for achieving compliance with the Endangered Species Act. Where available, enrollment in a pre-negotiated compliance program can provide a streamlined and timely solution for obtaining authorization for unavoidable impacts. However, some clients opt to pursue an individual permit or consultation that is more tailored to their particular circumstances and resources. Many of these tools have different requirements and standards for approval. Our regulatory specialists can help you understand which options are best suited to accomplishing your goals.