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Cape Hatteras Access Preservation Alliance v. Department of the Interior

ELR Citation: 34 ELR 20136
Nos. No. 03-217(RCL), (D.D.C., 11/01/2004)

A district court vacated and remanded the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's (FWS') designation of critical habitat in North Carolina for the wintering piper plover. The FWS may only designate occupied critical habitat in areas where the pertinent physical or biological features of the bird are currently found and where the physical or biological features may require special management consideration or protection. Nor may the FWS attempt to designate as unoccupied those lands it considers occupied and for which it has failed to make the proper showings required by statute. The FWS also failed to adequately evaluate the economic impacts of designating critical habitat, and it failed to comply with the National Environmental Policy Act.