California Resource Agency v. United States Department of Agriculture

Date: December 15th, 2010

Topic: Natural Resources, Wildlife

Type: Lawsuit vs. Federal Government

Jurisdiction: California

Citation: California Resource Agency v. United States Department of Agriculture, 08-cv-01185-MHP (Dec. 15, 2010)

After the U.S. Forest announced a plan to allow for road construction through wilderness lands in four national parks, various California agencies brought suit. The claim was brought under the National Forest Management Act and the National Environmental Policy Act, part of which requires consultation with state law and policy in coordinating forest development. California argued that the Forest Service had promised in writing not to allow development of roadless areas, but went back on their word and failed to adequately consider public comments and the natural habitat of the California Condor. After two years of litigation, the parties reached a settlement in 2010 that requires the Agency to issue a new plan that considers designating new wilderness areas and protects the state’s interest in participation in the process. While a new plan was developed, the agency could not allow any construction and had to engage in restoration efforts.

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