Two views.

The gas industry.

Trump Administration Final Rule Would Revise Endangered Species Act

...."while this administration recognizes the value of critical habitat as a conservation tool, in some cases, designation of critical habitat is not prudent. Revisions to the regulations identify a non-exhaustive list of such circumstances, but this will continue to be rare exceptions." In addition, the regulations would revise the definitions of "destruction or adverse modification," "effects of the action," and "environmental baseline," DOI (US Dept.of the Interior)said.

"The revised rules would be effective 30 days after publication in the Federal Register. [Not yet published, to my knowledge.]

"The changes would impact oil and natural gas projects, which have long had to meet the standards laid out in the ESA.

"Our industry actively works to conserve species every day, but the current regulatory framework for the Endangered Species Act hinders landowners and companies from effectively protecting and recovering species," said Western Energy Alliance President Kathleen Sgamma. "For far too long, the Act has been weaponized to stop the production of food, fuel and fiber that Americans need every day while turning a blind eye to how red tape actually inhibits the recovery of species. This administration has the fortitude to move forward with common-sense rules that follow the law while improving species protection, despite the hyperbolic rhetoric."........

The conservationist:

A blind crustacean, at least for now, is stronger than Dominion's drive for a gas pipeline

"Dominion and Duke Energy lost yet another federal permit to build the ill-conceived Atlantic Coast Pipeline. For the second time, the U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals vacated Dominion’s permit to take, kill, and destroy habitat for federally listed endangered species.

"A bumble bee, a bat, a mussel, and a half-inch, blind crustacean are in the proposed path of the 42-inch, fracked-gas pipeline. All four species are on the brink of extinction....

"Representative Leonor Sullivan (D) stated the reason for the law succinctly on July 27, 1973, on the House floor when she introduced the bill: “From the most narrow possible point of view, it is in the best interest of mankind to minimize the losses of genetic variations. The reason is simple: they are potential resources. They are the keys to puzzles which we cannot solve, and may provide answers to questions which we have not yet learned to ask.”

"Aldo Leopold, the father of wildlife conservation in the U.S. said it this way: “The first law of intelligent tinkering is to save all the parts.”

"In other words, it is not wise to wipe off the face of the Earth a species that could hold the cure for cancer or any number of human ailments......"