NEPA

ADEQ shows a better way for environmental permitting and protection

The Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) has the mission to protect public health and the environment.  They have to vet and permit operations big and small.  They do this through three main divisions: Air Quality, Waste programs, and Water Quality.

In a previous post, “How NEPA crushes productivity,” I wrote about the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), a byzantine Federal bureaucratic maze that stifles productivity.  The length, complexity and uncertainty of the permitting process of NEPA now takes a mining company about 10 years to obtain the necessary Federal permits for a major project.  That puts the U.S. at a competitive disadvantage since other countries are more efficient in this regard.  For instance, permitting time in Canada and Australia is typically less than two years.

In contrast to the Federal NEPA process, ADEQ has a process that gets the job done much more efficiently and now ADEQ is striving to make it even better.  The ADEQ system should be a model for the Feds.

I asked ADEQ Director Henry Darwin some questions about the philosophy and workings of ADEQ:

Wryheat: 1. What advancements in regulations and permitting time lines has ADEQ made recently?

Darwin:

ADEQ has applied “Lean techniques” to its permitting processes and is now making permitting decisions much faster.  Permits that previously required 18 months to process are now being processed in less than a year.  Certain interim permitting steps, administrative review for example, previously took up to 60 days and can now be completed in a single meeting.

Wryheat note: “Lean techniques” according to Wikipedia “is a production practice that considers the expenditure of resources for any goal other than the creation of value for the end customer to be wasteful, and thus a target for elimination. Working from the perspective of the customer who consumes a product or service, ‘value’ is defined as any action or process that a customer would be willing to pay for.  Essentially, lean is centered on preserving value with less work.”

Wryheat: 2. Do you believe that economic activity, especially mining, can co-exist with good environmental stewardship? If so, how?

Darwin:

I have long believed environmental protection and economic development go hand in hand. It is a little recognized fact that poor countries and countries that are emerging from poverty have the most difficult time protecting the environment. The converse is also true; a strong economy provides society the wherewithal to protect the environment.  As a result, the best indicator of a healthy natural environment is often a healthy economic environment.

Wryheat: 3. To some, mining and environmental quality are opposites. How does ADEQ reconcile the apparent conflict?

Darwin:

This is a false choice. Prudent use of natural resources and environmental protection are not at odds. Conflict between the two only arises at the extreme of either activity, and legal protections exist to minimize mining’s adverse impacts. ADEQ doesn’t get to decide whether a mine opens, but through our permitting processes, we ensure mining operations occur in an environmentally responsible way that limits harmful emissions to our air, water and soil. It’s worth noting, as important as the mining industry is to Arizona’s economy, our state leaders recognized the value in protecting our precious natural resources. This is why they passed the Environmental Quality Act in 1986, which not only established ADEQ as a separate, cabinet level agency, but also created the Aquifer Protection Permit program, the first comprehensive groundwater protection program in the nation. As a result, every mine that operates in Arizona must obtain a permit that ensures groundwater is protected.

Wryheat: 4. What do you regard as the minimum time for ADEQ to vet a major project and what does the process consist of?

Darwin:

In the recent past we have permitted several large projects in as little as six months, but timeframes are project-specific and providing a general timeframe would be subject to error. We encourage any party who is planning a major project to visit with us to establish a plan for expeditious permitting. An expeditious process consists of the following major steps:

Pre-Application Meeting: Face to face pre-application meeting

Administrative Review: A real time and face to face administrative review meeting to make sure the applications is complete

Substantive Review: Regular phone contact between the ADEQ permit writer and the applicant’s consultant during substantive review

Applicant Review of Permit Conditions

Public Comment

Public Comment Response

Final Payment

Issue Permit

Wryheat: 5. Does ADEQ regard itself, in its role of protecting the environment, a partner of business or a strict watchdog, or both? How is that reconciled?

Darwin:

As I said in my response to Question 2, above, a strong economy and safe, healthy environment are not adversarial. In fact, one of our agency’s strategic goals is to support environmentally responsible economic growth. Companies that do business in Arizona often require our products and services (permits, or example) in order to operate. Such companies are, in fact, our customers, and ADEQ must deliver value as our customers define it. This doesn’t mean we give our customers everything they want, because the customer is not always right. We have shareholders, too, namely taxpayers, who require a solid return on their investment; they want clear skies, clean water and land that is safe to roam, work and play. There must always be a healthy balance between delivering customer value and providing that solid return on investment for Arizona taxpayers.

I asked some representatives of the mining industry about their perception of ADEQ.

From Kathy Arnold, VP Environmental & Regulatory Affairs, Rosemont Copper Company:

ADEQ has made great strides with permitting both in setting specific requirements and in setting specific timeframes. This gives businesses the certainty necessary for determining timeframes.  ADEQ has been working on developing processes and rules for programs and their stakeholder system allows people to give input necessary so rules can be fully vetted and understood before implementation. The overall process for permits is fair and can be followed without political interference. The enforcement of the rules and permits is tough but again fair.  

From  Steve Trussell, Executive Director, Arizona Rock Products Association:

The ADEQ has recently worked on several projects that have been of key interest to citizens of our state in terms of air and water quality, but two that come to mind as of late are efforts to respond to  components of Governor Jan Brewer’s Four Cornerstones Document which was presented at the State of the State Address in January of this year. 

The ADEQ began the laborious task of process waste reduction regarding the amount of steps it takes to get a permit out the door by reducing licensing time frames.  ADEQ hosted events which included stakeholders in order to identify the factors that arise in permitting that could be potentially holding up permit approvals.  Permitting can be a challenge depending on the specific project and the current regulatory requirements and is a key factor in business investment in Arizona.  ADEQ has employed LEAN process improvements that have and will continue to reduce permitting delays for both air and water permitting and will be implementing the lessons learned across the boards and within all sections of the agency.  The agency reports that processing times have been reduced by one-third and have allowed companies to allocate valuable resources elsewhere. 

Additionally, the ADEQ will further enjoy expeditious submittals, approvals and reporting compliance as a result of their proposed e-portal which will allow the agency to move in a paperless direction.  The portal will enable a permitted source to track, report and submit payment on all of their various permits with the agency, and all in one place.  A process that once required a tremendous amount of time and effort from a record keeping and delivery standpoint would now be possible at the project site.

These are merely a few examples of progressive steps the ADEQ has taken to be protective of the environment while addressing time and resource sensitivity of Arizona’s businesses. Governor Brewer had this to say about the initiative, “The completion of this project, with its cost savings, convenience, and compliance assistance, will be a boon to business regulated by the ADEQ and help attract new business to Arizona” and the members of the Arizona Rock Products Association. couldn’t agree more.  All business organizations regulated by the ADEQ should encourage the legislature to support this laudable effort.

Mr. Darwin sent me some information on the proposed e-portal Mr. Trussel mentioned.  The new site will be called MyDEQ.  The program “will  funded through existing revenue ($10 million) from the Vehicle Emissions Inspections Fund.”

Here are some highlights of the proposed program:

MyDEQ1

MyDEQ2

The Federal government should take notice of ADEQ methods and try to emulate them.

See also:

Mining and the bureaucracy

How NEPA crushes productivity

Uncorrected Forest Service errors block marble mine

Pima County versus Rosemont

The importance of minerals to our economy and national security

Another federal coverup, how environmental laws waste money

In a previous post, I discussed how the structure of environmental laws encourages a cozy “sue and settle” relationship between some environmental groups and federal regulatory agencies.  This quirk of the law allows the agency to obtain court sanctioned, negotiated settlements that bypass input from affected parties and the public.  This structure of environmental laws allows environmental groups to impose delay after delay in federal decisions by charging that the federal agency failed to follow proper process.  This wastes taxpayer money both directly due to delay and from the need of the federal agency to defend against the litigation or repeat the process under the environmental laws.

Attorney Karen Budd-Falen says this practice is both a scandal and waste of taxpayer dollars.  The following is her charge (I’ve made some minor edits for clarity):

This is a plea for help, to raise awareness and public outcry regarding yet another federal government cover-up.  The scandal –- the Justice and Treasury Departments’ refusal to inform the American taxpayer how much, and for what, their tax dollars are being spent and … the inability of Congress to put forth legislation that requires this information to be available to the American public.  How can there be reform of a crisis (or how can radical environmental groups prove that our claims of abuse are blown out of proportion) without transparency and an accounting?

According to a study from Drexel University, there are 6,500 national and 20,000 local environmental organizations with an estimated 20-30 million members.  This study opines that the “environmental movement” dwarfs other modern social movements such as the civil rights or peace movements.  Because it would be impossible to study all 6,500 national groups, we reviewed all the federal district court complaints over a series of years for just 3 of these groups and found:

–Thirty-five percent (35%) of federal court complaints are filed ONLY based on a missed procedural step under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA);

–Twenty nine percent (29%) of federal court complaints are filed ONLY based upon missed timelines under the Endangered Species Act (ESA):

–Eleven percent (11%) of all federal court complaints are filed because of a failure to complete the process for considering an action under “Section 7” of the ESA.

Importantly, these are not cases where the federal court can rule that there is harm to the environment or that additional substantive actions are necessary; the ONLY thing a court can do is send the case back to the federal government for more process.

But that is not why this litigation is filed: litigation is filed because the courts have the power to delay private lives and livelihoods while the federal government completes more process.  The harm to American families is not whether the federal government can comply with a process, the harm is in the endless delay in issuing a decision so that America can move forward.  It is red-tape at its [worst], and radical environmental groups are absolutely making the most of the red tape and killing [the livelihoods of] American families in the meantime.

Let me give you more details:

As stated above, this firm reviewed the federal court complaints to analyze the claims underlying each of their cases; the families that are being targeted by the litigation; and what a federal court could do to grant the relief requested.  Over 400 federal court complaints individually analyzed were filed by either the Western Watersheds Project (WWP), WildEarth Guardians (WEG) or the Center for Biological Diversity (CBD).  WWP’s Policy Memos list as a “to do”: “Get all cows and sheep off federal lands ASAP!”  The WEG uses ” litigation, science, public outreach and organizing, the media, and lobbying” to make progress towards their goals of phasing out fossil fuels, obtaining formal listings of species under the Endangered Species Act; ensuring public lands “are not destroyed” by “over development, overgrazing, or natural resource extraction.”  CBD is noted as a group that uses litigation and petitions to “effect change.”  Its campaigns include listing species, stopping unsustainable human population growth and species extinction crisis and opposition to motorized recreation.

For these groups, we documented:

The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) is the litigation tool of choice for the WWP and CBD, with 58% and 36% of their complaints respectively including a NEPA claim.  NEPA is a process; according to the Supreme Court, NEPA’s purpose is “to ensure a fully informed and well-considered decision, not necessarily a decision the judges of the Court of Appeals or of this Court would have reached had they been members of the decision making unit of the agency.”  Thus, the courts enforce the NEPA process, but rarely over turn the substance of the federal agency decision.

The problem, however, is that the courts are willing to enjoin or stop a project or decision until the federal government complies with the NEPA process.  So what does this mean for American families?  Consider that 89% of the federal district court complaints filed by WWP directly attack livestock grazing by claiming a violation of a NEPA procedure and then seeking to stop (temporarily or permanently) a rancher’s use of the lands he has used for generations because the federal government violated the NEPA process.  NEPA is a powerful hammer to eliminate these families because if they rely on the federal government to make a decision and the federal government cannot get through enough procedural hoops to make a decision, that American family cannot continue to make a living.   These ranch families are not the only ones under attack because of litigation over process.  The industries that produce America’s energy from our natural resources are bearing the brunt of the NEPA litigation from the WEG and CBD, specifically 22% and 18% of the federal court complaints respectively oppose natural resource producing power plants, energy production, and mining.  Even “green energy” is now being attacked by the WWP, CBD and WEG as part of their litigation strategy.  Again, the issue being litigated is not whether energy production is beneficial or detrimental to the environment, but whether the federal government properly completed the process. And just like the harm to the ranching families, the Courts can stop all movement until the NEPA process is complete and the radical groups cease their litigation wanting more and more process.

Another huge litigation arena is the federal government’s compliance with the timelines in the Endangered Species Act.  Over 46% of the cases filed by the WEG are ONLY to force the federal government to comply with these time frames; 30% of the CBD cases and 25% of the WWP cases contain the same claims.  As with NEPA, the courts cannot enforce any listing or critical habitat decision; the court can ONLY hold that the federal agencies failed to comply with the timelines and then pay attorneys fees to these radical groups because the federal government cannot meet the time-frames set by Congress.  Attorney hourly fees can range from $500.00 per hour to $750.00 per hour.   And it has cost the American taxpayers millions of dollars paying radical groups to harm American workers.

American families are being targeted by groups being paid your tax dollars to put Americans out of work, not in the name of environmental protection, but in the name of procedures and technicalities. Please contact your Congressional Representatives; we have to stop yet another federal government cover-up.  We need an accounting now.

Wryheat comment:

Environmental laws, as currently structured, contain too many bureaucratic hoops and traps that have nothing to do with environmental issues. For many federal agencies it is all about process rather than substance and good environmental stewardship. Environmental groups have learned to take advantage of the bureaucratic hoops and traps to delay the process and enrich themselves to the detriment of American families, industries, and our economy.

See also:

Property Rights and Freedom

Regulating behind closed doors, the cozy relationship between the Feds and environmental groups

Mining and the bureaucracy

How NEPA crushes productivity

The EPA is destroying America

Repeal the Endangered Species Act

Endangered Species paperwork to cost $206,098,920

How NEPA crushes productivity

NEPA, the National Environmental Policy Act, was signed into law in 1970 by President Richard Nixon with the intent to assess environmental impacts of Federal projects. “In enacting NEPA, Congress recognized that nearly all Federal activities affect the environment in some way and mandated that before Federal agencies make decisions, they must consider the effects of their actions on the quality of the human environment.” NEPA is administered by the Council on Environmental Quality within the Executive Office of the President.

Although established with good intentions, the reality is that NEPA has turned into a byzantine bureaucratic maze that stifles productivity. For instance, remember a few years ago when President Obama touted “shovel ready projects” to get the economy working again? Well, those “shovel ready projects” were delayed because they had to contend with NEPA. Before a single shovel can hit the dirt it usually takes more than five years for the average Federal project to jump through all the normal environmental hoops. Some private projects take longer, for example the proposed Rosemont Copper project is seven years into the permitting process.

Hal Quinn, president of the National Mining Association, notes that permit delays are among the biggest hurdles for mineral development. “The length, complexity and uncertainty of the permitting process are the primary reasons investors give for not investing is U.S. minerals mining. In the U.S., necessary government authorizations now take close to 10 years to secure, resulting in decreased competitiveness and increased reliance on foreign sources of minerals.” Permitting time in Canada and Australia is typically less than two years.

That being said, let’s look at how NEPA should theoretically work. The Council on Environmental Quality has published a Citizen’s Guide to NEPA, which I will summarize with excerpts and comments:

NEPA applies to a very wide range of Federal actions that include, but are not limited to, Federal construction projects, plans to manage and develop Federally owned lands, and Federal approvals of non-Federal activities such as grants, licenses, and permits.

NEPA requires Federal agencies to consider environmental effects that include, among others, impacts on social, cultural, and economic resources, as well as natural resources.

Frequently, private individuals, companies, and municipalities will become involved in the NEPA process when they need a permit issued by a Federal agency. Federal agencies usually require the private company or developer to pay for the preparation of analyses, but the agency remains responsible for the scope and accuracy of the analysis.

Although many Federal agencies get involved, there are three Federal agencies that have particular responsibilities for NEPA. Primary responsibility is vested in the Council on Environmental Quality. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reviews environmental impact statements (EIS) and some environmental assessments (EA) issued by Federal agencies. The third agency is the U.S. Institute for Environmental Conflict Resolution (located within the Morris K. Udall Foundation, a Federal agency located in Tucson). This agency is supposed to provide an independent, neutral, place for Federal agencies to work with citizens as well as State, local, and Tribal governments, private organizations, and businesses to reach common ground.

Navigating the NEPA process:

Once the lead Federal agency has received a proposed action, it has three possible actions: it can issue a Categorical Exclusion (CE), require an Environmental Assessment (EA), or require an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS).

A Categorical Exclusion means that the agency has determined that the proposed action will not have a significant effect on the quality of the human environment.

In an Environmental Assessment, the purpose is to determine the significance of the environmental effects and to look at alternative means to achieve the agency’s objectives. The EA is intended to be a concise document that (1) briefly provides sufficient evidence and analysis for determining whether to prepare an EIS; (2) aids an agency’s compliance with NEPA when no environmental impact statement is necessary; and (3) facilitates preparation of an Environmental Impact Statement when one is necessary. The EA process concludes with either a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) or a determination to proceed to preparation of an EIS.

The Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) is the big, expensive, time-consuming process. A Federal agency must prepare an EIS if it is proposing a major Federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment. [In actual practice, a private company such as a mining company prepares a draft EIS and submits it to the Federal agency.] It begins with publication of a Notice of Intent (NOI), stating the agency’s intent to prepare an EIS for a particular proposal. The NOI is published in the Federal Register, and provides some basic information on the proposed action in preparation for the scoping process. The NOI provides a brief description of the proposed action and possible alternatives. It also describes the agency’s proposed scoping process, including any meetings and how the public can get involved.

The next major step in the EIS process is when the agencies submit a draft EIS for public comment. The agency must analyze the full range of direct, indirect, and cumulative effects of the preferred alternative, if any, and of the reasonable alternatives identified in the draft EIS.

When the public comment period is finished, the agency analyzes comments, conducts further analysis as necessary, and prepares the final EIS. In the final EIS, the agency must respond to the substantive comments received from other government agencies and from the public.

When it is ready, the agency will publish the final EIS and EPA will publish a Notice of Availability in the Federal Register. There is an additional (but rarely used) procedure worth noting: pre-decision referrals to CEQ. This referral process takes place when EPA or another Federal agency determines that proceeding with the proposed action is environmentally unacceptable. If an agency reaches that conclusion, the agency can refer the issue to CEQ within 25 days after the Notice of Availability for the final EIS is issued. CEQ then works to resolve the issue with the agencies concerned. CEQ might also refer the agencies to the U.S. Institute for Environmental Conflict Resolution to try to address the matter before formal elevation.

The end of the process is the Record of Decision (ROD), a document that states what the decision is; identifies the alternatives considered, including the environmentally preferred alternative; and discusses mitigation plans, including any enforcement and monitoring commitments.

What I have described above is the streamlined NEPA process. But we are not done yet. Sometimes a Federal agency is obligated to prepare a supplement to an existing EIS if it makes substantial changes in the proposed action that are relevant to environmental concerns, or if there are significant new circumstances or information relevant to environmental concerns and bearing on the proposed action or its impacts. An agency may also prepare a supplemental EIS if it determines that doing so will further the purposes of NEPA. A supplemental EIS is prepared in the same way as a draft or final EIS, except that scoping is not required. If a supplement is prepared following a draft EIS, the final EIS will address both the draft EIS and supplemental EIS.

In actual practice, the NEPA process is complicated by lawsuits and sometimes by foot-dragging Federal agencies. There are no statutory time limits imposed upon Federal agencies to complete the NEPA process. The NEPA process is long and complicated, and environmental groups have used this to their advantage to cause delay after delay in the hope that the project would become too expensive to continue. From Enviro Defenders legal handbook: “Though a lawsuit by itself will seldom stop a project, it can serve as an important element of a larger campaign to do so.”

A 2007 Congressional Research Service report notes: “As a procedural statute, the courts have ruled that NEPA does not require agencies to elevate environmental concerns above others. Instead, NEPA requires only that the agency assess the environmental consequences of an action and its alternatives before proceeding. If the adverse environmental effects of the proposed action are adequately identified and evaluated, the agency is not constrained by NEPA from deciding that other benefits outweigh the environmental costs and moving forward with the action.”

It seems that Australia and Canada have found a more efficient way to move forward while addressing environmental issues. The U.S. economy would benefit by taking note of their methods.

If you found it exhausting just reading about NEPA, imaging how it is trying to comply with it.

(This article first appeared in the Arizona Daily Independent.)

See also:

Mining and the bureaucracy

Uncorrected Forest Service errors block marble mine

Proposed Jaguar habitat in Arizona and New Mexico is scientifically and legally indefensible

JaguarA new report from the Pima Natural Resource Conservation District (PNRCD) shows that the proposal by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (FWS) to designate Critical Habitat for the jaguar under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) is scientifically indefensible because it is based on flawed data, and it violates laws such as the Data Quality Act.

PNRCD requests that FWS withdraw its proposed rule “because habitat ‘essential’ to the conservation of the jaguar as a species does not exist in either Arizona or New Mexico under any scientifically credible definition of that term, because designation of critical habitat therein cannot possibly help save jaguars, and because the economic consequences of adding yet another layer of regulation and restriction on national security, resource production, water use, hunting and recreation during the worst recession on record since 1929 far outweigh any possibly discernible benefit to jaguars as a species that might be gained by designating critical habitat for them north of the Mexican border where they are but rarely transient…”

See report and supporting material at: http://www.sacpaaz.org/comments-on-proposed-jaguar-critical-habitat/

Some highlights:

For Critical Habitat to be established under ESA, the FWS must show that the area in question is essential to the jaguars conservation and survival as a species, not merely whether the area in question could host or has hosted individual, transient jaguars.  “Contrary to the claim of the Service in this proposed rule, recent, documented sightings of four or five individual jaguars on singular occasions, two of which occurred over a decade and a half ago, are not scientific evidence of current jaguar residency in or occupancy of the United States for purpose of critical habitat designation. Nor are these sightings scientific evidence that such brief, male-only transience represents use of habitat by jaguars essential to their collective existence or conservation as a species because the jaguar’s breeding range spans two continents, ends in northern Mexico, and the jaguar’s actual epicenter of abundance is located in South America.”

 The study shows how FWS is using opinion of so-called jaguar experts rather than hard data.  This goes counter to the requirements of ESA which states that design of Critical Habitat much be based on the best scientific data available rather than upon concepts and principles of conservation biology which rely on assumptions.

 The study examines reports of jaguar sightings in Arizona and New Mexico and shows why they do not meet the standards of scientific evidence of “essential” habitat.  The study documents that several jaguars were transported into the U.S. for the purpose of big game hunts and “seeding” a population for future hunts.  Jaguar sightings can be attributed to some of these jaguars rather than natural ranging of jaguars.

 The study also alleges that  false and mis-representative statements, published in the  2011 Arizona Game & Fish Department Jaguar Conservation Assessment, have been used by FWS to form a basis for Critical Habitat designation.

 The study shows FWS “misrepresents the distribution of jaguars within the United States by erroneously claiming that jaguars once occurred as far north as Santa Fe, New Mexico.”  PNRCD shows, however, that FWS errs in its attribution because the claim is actually based on a jaguar sighted near Santa Fe, Argentina, and not from New Mexico or the North American continent at all.

 The PNRCD study notes that “The premise that resident populations of jaguars existed in Arizona and New Mexico before 1900 is unsupported by the scientific record, and the scientific record of jaguars killed in Arizona and New Mexico after 1900 is fraught with discrepancies, inaccuracies, duplications and unreliability.”  The study also notes “that neither Padre Kino nor Juan Mateo Manje make any mention of jaguars in what is today Arizona despite their many entradas into southern Arizona conducted during the late 1600s and early 1700s, and when it is also considered that the Spanish offered no bounties on jaguars, ever, in what is today Arizona and New Mexico, respectively.”  If a natural population of jaguars  existed in Arizona in the early days, one would think that someone would have taken note.

 PNRCD provides thorough review of the historic records of jaguar occurrence for Arizona and New Mexico. As the PNRCD’s review clearly reveals, many of those records heretofore assumed by all researchers to be accurate and reliable are, in fact, both inaccurate and unreliable.  Moreover, this review found that ten fatal flaws compromise the scientific integrity of both the characterization of those records by editors, researchers and the Service to date, and, all conclusions and models of alleged suitable jaguar habitat and residency based on the use thereof.

 These ten, fatal scientific flaws are:

1) Use of inaccurate and unreliable records.

2) Reliance on the unfounded assumption that all recorded natural history of jaguars in Arizona and New Mexico began in the year 1900.

3) Reliance on and propagation of the false assumption that all sightings of jaguars in Arizona and New Mexico are of “naturally occurring” animals when many were actually of foreign origin and imported and released by humans for hunting purposes.

4) Failure to examine primary records and adequately verify cited data and literature for accuracy (an universal error).

5) Failure to present the specific dataset used in the model.

6) Failure to cite data sources or other sources for specific records.

7) Speculation that the location where a jaguar was killed, or in some cases where it was first sighted in the United States, somehow represents its preferred natural habitat.

8) Failure to acknowledge the existence of data rejected or omitted, and failure to explain why certain data was rejected or omitted when the reason is neither obvious nor apparent to the reader.

9) Failure to identify a specific jaguar in an occurrence record.

10) Failure to properly verify the data to prevent according duplicative records to the same jaguar.

 The last part of the PNRCD study shows how the FWS proposal fails to conform to the law in designating Critical Habitat for the jaguar.

See also:

Jaguar Listing and Habitat Designation Based on Junk Science

Jaguars versus the Rosemont mine