Threatened and Endangered Species. When Your Project Warrants Consultation. Introduction. Purpose To provide a consistent framework for designated NRCS field and State office staff to successfully consult with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS ). Objectives
When Your Project Warrants Consultation
To provide a consistent framework for designated NRCS field and State office staff to successfully consult with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS).
National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)
Endangered Species Act (ESA)
Protected Species and State’s Responsibilities:
Streamlined NRCS environmental evaluations (EE) by programmatically evaluating and determining effects for many species under a suite of disturbance categories.
Pre-determined “No Effect”, and some “May Effect” decisions that would otherwise prompt consultation with the USFWS.
State participation in the process also allowed for some streamlining of State-listed species; however, most were not evaluated.
So, the PC is an efficient and appropriate decision-making tool.
Nevertheless, the PC was no developed to cover all situations or all species.
For example, forested areas in Iowa are being manipulated at greater rates than were anticipated during the development of the PC.
For example, sinkhole and algific slopes, and brush and tree management related to grazing.
FIRST: Be willing to decentralize the process
Second: Establish a sound protocol
Third: Designate and Collaborate
Designated field staff
Notification to the State Office
Collaborate on big stuff
ESA Section 7
Complete Project Description
Complete List of Affected Protected Species
What’s affected and How
Clear Depiction of Avoidance and Minimization
Substantiate Your Determination
Use of Species-Specific Information
Consultation Library (state-wide shared drive)
Planning guides (NatureServe)