Today U.S. Senator Dean Heller (R-NV) announced the Sage Grouse Stewardship Project. The project is designed to identify management tools used by private property owners, industry, and other individuals to help keep the sage grouse from being listed as an endangered species.
"In an ongoing effort to keep the sage grouse off the endangered species list, I am pleased to announce the Sage Grouse Stewardship Project. By giving a voice to Nevadans most directly impacted by a potential sage grouse ESA listing, we will be better able to do the right thing for the sage grouse while ensuring economic activity on public lands. Nevada has the highest unemployment rate in the nation, and the economic impacts of a sage grouse listing would be devastating. I look forward to working with this group to protect sage grouse habitat while securing the future of economic opportunity, like renewable energy development and recreation, on federal lands," said Senator Dean Heller.
Approximately 30 people participated in today's working group. In December, Senator Heller sent a letter to Secretary Salazar regarding the sage grouse population. In the letter, Heller asked the Department of the Interior to protect the sage grouse habitat while also providing for economic activity on Nevada's federal lands. In February, Heller discussed efforts to protect sage grouse habitat with Secretary Salazar during a hearing by the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee.