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Saturday, May 18, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Feds Let Off-Roaders Run Wild in California Desert

OAKLAND, Calif. (CN) - The Bureau of Land Management condoned roads set up for recreational vehicles based on two flawed biological opinions, failing again in its duty to protect threatened and endangered species, including the Peninsular bighorn sheep, environmental groups claim in Federal Court.

The Center for Biological Diversity claims the BLM relied on two flawed biological opinions to open the Dunn Road and Windy Point areas to continued off-road vehicle use, including for mountain biking and jeep tours at Dunn Road, which was created through trespassing.

The BLM, Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne and the US Fish & Wildlife Service allegedly violated the Endangered Species and National Environmental Policy Acts by not doing a proper environmental assessment and not providing the public with enough information before adopting Coachella Valley Plan amendments to the California Desert Conservation Area.

The Center for Biological Diversity, the Sierra Club and the California Wilderness Coalition want an order overturning the allegedly unlawful management decisions and requiring them to comply with several environmental acts and statutes, including the two mentioned above.

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