Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Political Pressure Admitted At Fish & Wildlife

By Cernig

Nice to see:
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on Tuesday reversed seven rulings that denied endangered species increased protection, after an investigation found the actions were tainted by political pressure from a former senior Interior Department official.

In a letter to Rep. Nick Rahall, D-W.Va., the agency acknowledged that the actions had been ``inappropriately influenced'' and that ``revising the seven identified decisions is supported by scientific evidence and the proper legal standards.'' The reversal affects the protection for species including the white-tailed prairie dog, the Preble's meadow jumping mouse and the Canada lynx.

The rulings came under scrutiny last spring after an Interior Department inspector general concluded that agency scientists were being pressured to alter their findings on endangered species by Julie MacDonald, then a deputy assistant secretary overseeing the Fish and Wildlife Service.

MacDonald resigned her position last May.
It is, however, only the tip of the iceberg.

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