Jump to Navigation
Jump to Content

Klamath-Siskiyou Wildlands Center v. MacWhorter

ELR Citation: 45 ELR 20149
Nos. 13-35453, (9th Cir., 08/10/2015)

The Ninth Circuit reversed a lower court decision dismissing an environmental group's ESA lawsuit against the U.S. Forest Service concerning the agency's approval of suction dredge mining projects in the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest. Because the Forest provides designated critical habitat for coho salmon, the group argued that the Forest Service should have consulted with NMFS prior to its approval. The lower court concluded that the group's notice letter was deficient, and therefore dismissed the case for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. But the appellate court disagreed. The group's notice letter specifically alleged a geographically and temporally limited violation of the ESA, namely, that the Forest Service approved miners' notice of intent to engage in suction dredge mining in the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest during a specified three-year period, and that the Forest Service had not consulted as required under ESA §7 for proposed mining in critical coho habitat. This is sufficient under the ESA. Klamath-Siskiyou Wildlands Center v. MacWhorter, No. 13-35453, 45 ELR 20149 (9th Cir. Aug. 10, 2015).