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Posted by: In: Endangered Species 20 Oct 2016 0 comments

Texas HornshellThe U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) released the draft Endangered Species Act Compensatory Mitigation Policy this morning. The draft policy is open for public comment until October 17, 2016.

The USFWS states, “The draft ESA Compensatory Mitigation Policy, if adopted, would cover permittee-responsible mitigation, conservation banking, in-lieu fee programs, and other third-party mitigation mechanisms, and would stress the need to hold all compensatory mitigation mechanisms to equivalent and effective standards.”

While it is difficult at first glance to determine what the draft policy will change, it appears that USFWS will place more emphasis on impacts to potential habitat as opposed to identifiable adverse effects to species, possibly require a no net loss standard for potential habitat destruction (similar to wetlands), and place greater emphasis on “landscape level” solutions.