Ranchers Frustrated by Biden Administration’s Continued Steamroll over NW Washington Communities

WASHINGTON (March 21, 2024) – Today, the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) and Public Lands Council (PLC) condemned the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s (USFWS) indication that they intend to proceed with translocating grizzly bears to the North Cascades Ecosystem in northwest Washington state, despite longstanding and vocal objections from local communities and elected officials.

The final environmental impact statement released today is not a final decision, but indicates that USFWS is likely to translocate bears to the area with a Section 10(j) rule under the Endangered Species Act in place — with the goal of eventually reaching a stable population of 200. A final decision is expected in the coming weeks.

“The 10(j) status included in today’s announcement may be the administration’s attempt to placate the state, but we continue to stand with the ranchers and rural families in northwest Washington who do not want this proposal to move forward at all,” said Director of PLC and NCBA Government Affairs Sigrid Johannes. “Dropping new apex predators into rural Americans’ backyards is not something that the federal government should undertake without consensus. State and local stakeholders have made their serious concerns about this proposal known for years now, and plowing forward to the detriment of local farmers and ranchers would be unwise for both conservation of the species and health of the rural economy. We urge the administration to listen to local communities and reconsider this plan.”

NCBA and PLC previous submitted comments to the administration opposed to this plan.

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