U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar says Wyoming could be used as a template for how the federal government addresses challenges that sage-grouse face not only here, but across the bird’s range across the West. Salazar says if the states work with the federal government, Wyoming’s plan could help authorities balance conservation with development.
“It’s important that we continue to have development and job creation in these communities,” says Salazar. “Oil and gas, renewable energy and recreation, hunting and fishing, all of which are so important to the economies of these western states.”
Governor Mead will continue working with federal officials, as well as 10 other western states, so that the sage-grouse stays off the endangered species list.
Conservationists applaud the move. The Biodiversity Conservation Alliance issuing a statement that an Endangered Species listing would hopefully become unnecessary and that it was in the best interest of development to save sage-grouse populations.