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Feds Try End Run on Endangered Species Act to Help Greenhouse Gas Makers

SAN FRANCISCO (CN) - The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service amended the Endangered Species Act to exempt companies that emit greenhouse gases from the act's consultation requirements, according to a federal lawsuit challenging the end run on a powerful environmental law.

The agencies also are accused of eliminating mandatory informal consultation and reducing formal consultations required under the Act, limiting consultations to the aspect of a project that would cause harm rather than the entire project, and imposing an arbitrary deadline to respond to consultation requests.

The National Wildlife Foundation and others say the agencies issued a Finding of No Significant impact after preparing an inadequate Environmental Assessment, rather than preparing a complete Environmental Impact Statement, as required by the Endangered Species Act

Plaintiffs want the regulations declared illegal and set aside, costs and other relief. They are represented by Amber Kemble of Fairfield, Calif.

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