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Heartwood, Inc. v. U.S. Forest Serv.

ELR Citation: 34 ELR 20083
Nos. No. 03-3267, (8th Cir., 08/25/2004)

The Eighth Circuit affirmed a district court decision that the U.S. Forest Service's decision to approve harvesting timber in the Mark Twain National Forest did not violate NEPA or the ESA. The Forest Service did not act arbitrarily and capriciously in determining that the project would have no significant impact on the environment. Thus, they were not required to complete an EIS rather than an EA. Further, the Forest Service and the FWS did not act arbitrarily and capriciously in determining that the existing data on endangered Indiana bats was sufficient to conclude that the project was not likely to jeopardize the species. Thus, no violation of ESA occurred. Thus, the district court's grant of summary judgment to the Forest Service was proper.