Private companies in five states have now enrolled more than 2.5 million acres in the Lesser Prairie-Chicken Range-wide Conservation Plan, representing oil and gas, pipelines, electric transmission and wind energy, resulting in nearly $15 million for habitat conservation over the next three years.

Added to more than 1.3 million acres of oil and gas leases under conservation agreements in New Mexico, this brings the total industry commitment close to 4 million acres.

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Range-wide plan enrollment now includes 14 electric transmission companies, representing most of the electric grid across the species' range in New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas. Also, eight oil and gas companies have enrolled more than 2 million acres across all five states. Two wind energy developments and one natural gas pipeline company also have signed on, with more in the process of enrollment. 

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service approves lesser prairie-chicken plan

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service recently announced it had signed a Range-wide Oil and Gas Industry Candidate Conservation Agreement with Assurances (CCAA) with the western association, under the range-wide plan developed by WAFWA and state wildlife agencies in Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas. The service also announced an accompanying Environmental Assessment.

The service has proposed listing the bird as threatened under the federal Endangered Species Act, with a final determination expected by March 31.

 

Also of interest:

Partnerships help conserve water resources

Energy and agriculture work with states to conserve lesser prairie-chicken…

Conservation efforts pay off for Texas rancher