Stone, Sand and Gravel Review - September/October 2010 - (Page 24)

Achieving Aggregates Project Goals by Andy Brookens Skelly and Loy, Inc. While Ensuring Species Conservation is of Concern s the nation attempts to meet the challenges of economic revitalization, infrastructure reliability and renewable energy, conflicts with the mandates of the Endangered Species Act are inevitable. The U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service, an agency of the Department of the Interior responsible for enforcement of the ESA relating to terrestrial and freshwater organisms, estimates that two thirds of the 1,323 species identified as endangered or threatened within the United States have at least some supporting habitat on private lands. The provisions of the ESA require species to be listed as endangered or threatened on the basis of their biological status and threats to their existence. Factors that are considered in this analysis include: damage to or destruction of species habitat; overutilization of the species for commercial, recreational, scientific or educational purposes; disease or predation; inadequacy of existing legal protection; and other natural or manmade factors affecting species existence. The due diligence process to evaluate potential exposure to liability under the ESA is critical for aggregates producers. In particular, the economic viability of a proposed project may pivot on the ability of a producer to successfully incorporate requisite species avoidance and federal permit conditions. The compromise of aggregates development interests and species conservation are achievable, but must be fulfilled through the regulatory framework of the ESA and a proactive scientific attitude. The approach taken by aggregates producers to meet this challenge should incorporate the following considerations: I. Early Project Coordination and Evaluation Producers need to be proactive in the infancy stages of a proposed project to assess the likelihood of conflict with an endangered or threatened species. Typically, coordination with the local field office of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is initiated to gather a list of potential species whose active range extends through the proposed project area. Coordination with state wildlife resource agencies should also be undertaken to identify additional species that may be protected by state endangered species laws. Some state wildlife resource agencies now maintain an online database review tool for conducting preliminary screenings of proposed projects for conflicts with documented species occurrences. Previous consultations completed for other 24 Stone, Sand & Gravel Review, September/October 2010 A

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Stone, Sand and Gravel Review - September/October 2010

Stone, Sand and Gravel Review - September/October 2010
Events Calendar
Table of Contents
Legislative Calendar
Sustainability is More Than Just Another Buzzword
NSSGA's New Economic Calculator Measures Contribution to Local Communities
Co-Location Provides Environmental Win for Quarry Operations and Landfill
Achieving Aggregates Project Goals While Ensuring Species Conservation Is of Concern
Will There Be A Middle Class Revolt?
Why They'll Win
CEO Safety Newsletter
Rip 'N Share Safety Handout
NSSGA @ Work
Buyers' Guide

Stone, Sand and Gravel Review - September/October 2010