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Improved Endangered Species Rules will Ensure Habitat Conservation and Species Protection

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WASHINGTON, August 12, 2019 – API welcomed the Department of the Interior’s (DOI) action to clarify and improve the implementation of the Endangered Species Act through the reduction of duplicative and unnecessary regulations that ultimately bog down conservation efforts. The streamlining of these regulations will ensure that public-private projects can further promote the conservation of habitat and protection of endangered species, while focusing resources on environmental improvements across the country.

“Effective species and habitat conservation practices are front and center for the oil and natural gas industry and its employees. Like many Americans, we love our country’s open spaces too, and understand that protecting species and their habitats are a necessary aspect of safe and responsible operations to develop the nation’s oil and natural gas resources,” said Erik Milito, API vice president of upstream and industry operations. “Our member companies and their employees are committed to environmental stewardship, and have a proven record of compliance with regulations, voluntary actions, and innovative partnerships with national and local conservation organizations to preserve habitat and to protect wildlife.”

The updated Endangered Species Rules includes the following:

  • Promoting transparency by allowing the public to have access to economic and other impacts of a listing;
  • Clarifying and improving the interagency consultation process to reduce unnecessary costs and delays that affect the public;
  • Revising the “foreseeable future” definition to ensure that a listing decision framework is based on application of accepted scientific methods, not on speculation about future conditions;
  • Amending the definition of “physical or biological features” for lands under consideration as critical habitat for a species to confirm that lands do have the features essential to a species at the time of designation.

The natural gas and oil industry fosters conservation actions – including preserving habitats and protecting wildlife across the country – through the support of public-private partnerships, which many of API’s member companies support. 

API is the only national trade association representing all facets of the natural gas and oil industry, which supports 10.3 million U.S. jobs and nearly 8 percent of the U.S. economy. API’s more than 600 members include large integrated companies, as well as exploration and production, refining, marketing, pipeline, marine businesses, and service and supply firms. They provide most of the nation’s energy and are backed by a growing grassroots movement of more than 47 million Americans. API was formed in 1919 as a standards-setting organization. In its first 100 years, API has developed more than 700 standards to enhance operational and environmental safety, efficiency and sustainability.