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Lesser prairie chicken briefing ~~ Canadian, 2/15/13.

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Presentation on theme: "Lesser prairie chicken briefing ~~ Canadian, 2/15/13."— Presentation transcript:

1 Lesser prairie chicken briefing ~~ Canadian, 2/15/13

2 Doug Fisk President, Board of Directors Panhandle Producers & Royalty Owners Association

3 Senator Kel Seliger 31 st Senatorial District

4 Representative Ken King House District 88

5 Wayne Hughes Executive Vice President PPROA

6 US Fish & Wildlife Service - endangered species listing process Texas Parks & Wildlife Department – rangewide conservation plan USFWS comment process

7 Member of the grouse family Endemic species found only in a 5 state region Habitat needs are large tracts (20,000 acres or more) of open grasslands

8 Where are we on the ESA timeline for LPC ? October 1995 Petitioned to list the LPC July 1997 Positive 90 day finding July month finding warranted but precluded Series of annual reviews of candidate status (CNOR) December 2008 LPN 8 to 2 November 2010 most recent Candidate Notice published December 2012 Proposed Rule published September 2013 Final Rule proposed

9 What would happen if the LPC is listed under the ESA A Recovery Plan - Average costs for recovery is $15.9 million B.Project review – delay in start time for conservation and development projects C.Expanded federal budgets to accommodate LPC conservation efforts D.Federalization of state trust species

10 LPC Conservation delivery: Oil and Gas Candidate Conservation Agreement with Assurances (CCAA) effort Parties include: - 5 state wildlife agencies - Several Associations across LPC range - Multiple Oil and Gas Companies State Wildlife Agencies and industry are working together on conservation practices or BMPs. Parties agree on Western Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies being permit holder. Draft submitted to USFWS.

11 Benefits of Range-Wide CCAA Held by WAFWA Known development costs Low participation costs Low administration costs Direct conservation benefit

12 Certificate of Inclusion “Insurance policy” for the producer -- fee Site assessment by WAFA wildlife biologist Identifies existing production sites and roads Determine areas “at risk” – level of occupancy Impact of future production activities Impacts of other industries, land users Fee on new drilling and production Fees applied to enhancing potential and existing lpc habitat at other locations – 10% admin. cost VOLUNTARY

13 Actions Necessary for Success Maintain state authority for LPC management. Expedited review by FWS of LPC Conservation Plan, CCAA/CCA, and facilitation of NEPA review. Continuation of Farm Bill, State Wildlife Grants, and Partners for Wildlife Programs supporting LPC conservation to allow for transition to range wide effort. Maintain SGP-CHAT and implement business plan for streamlined permitting. Continued partnership with industry and ranching

14 Sean Kyle Panhandle Diversity Biologist Texas Parks and Wildlife Department

15 DRAFT Range-wide Conservation Plan for the Lesser Prairie-Chicken

16 Why are we here today? Overview of the draft Range-wide Plan Solicit early comments and feedback prior to public meetings

17 Outline Background on the listing, Range-wide Plan, and how you can be a part of it What should the plan do? Population goals Habitat focal areas (HFAs) and connectivity zones (CZs) Metrics and mitigation framework Implementation

18 Outline Background on the listing, Range-wide Plan, and how you can be a part of it What should the plan do Population goals Habitat focal areas (HFAs) and connectivity zones (CZs) Metrics and mitigation framework Implementation

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20 Who’s involved in the process so far? LPC Interstate Working Group (LPCIWG) Ecological Management and Research Institute Science Team Universities, States, FWS, NRCS, NGOs Voluntary Offset Committee States, FWS, NGOs Banking and Credit Trading Working Group States, FWS, NGOs, private conservation organizations Conservation Implementation Teams Local biologists and conservation delivery staff

21 Range-Wide Plan Review and Feedback Process How you can get involved Draft #1—Jan 19 Range-wide Industry Meeting—Edmond, OK on Jan Texas Agricultural Associations and Agency Meeting— Amarillo, TX on Feb 1 Texas Landowner Working Group Meetings—Canadian and Morton, TX on Feb 5 & 6 Draft #2—Feb 15 TX Public Meetings—NE & SW in late Feb Public Meetings—CO, NM, OK, KS in late Jan through late Feb Final draft goes to USFWS by March 31

22 Background on the listing, Range-wide Plan, and how you can be a part of it What should the plan do? Population goals Habitat focal areas (HFAs) and connectivity zones (CZs) Metrics and mitigation framework Implementation Outline

23 Range-Wide Conservation Plan Goals Develop range-wide population and habitat goals and monitoring strategies Develop common framework for offsets or mitigation Unify targeting and delivery of conservation programs

24 Structure of the Range-wide Plan

25 Background on the listing, Range-wide Plan, and how you can be a part of it What should the plan do? Population goals Habitat focal areas (HFAs) and connectivity zones (CZs) Metrics and mitigation framework Implementation Outline

26 Population Goals Science–based Sustainable Attainable Does not require a chicken on every acre across the historic range

27 Population Goals Science Team produced ecoregional population goals Goals are 10 year averages 67,000 birds range- wide 2x the 2012 population estimate 8,000 24,000 10,000 25,000

28 Background on the listing, Range-wide Plan, and how you can be a part of it What should the plan do? Population goals Habitat focal areas (HFAs) and connectivity zones (CZs) Metrics and mitigation framework Implementation Outline

29 Habitat Focal Areas and Connectivity Zones Focus management efforts Space for chickens AND development Science-based and attainable goals

30 Habitat Focal Areas Represent 35% of the current range of the species Intensive management will support 75% of the population goals Low oil and gas well density Encompass less than 5% of the high quality wind development potential

31 Connectivity Zones Represent <14% of the range of the species in Texas Isolated populations can be unstable Ensure connectivity of focal areas with lower habitat requirements

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35 Population and Habitat Goals Range-wide, science-based, attainable goals to ensure the long-term existence of the species Common goals across all agencies and conservation organizations Spatially defined for targeted conservation delivery Ensure the conservation of the species as well as a thriving economy in the region

36 Background on the listing, Range-wide Plan, and how you can be a part of it What should the plan do? Population goals Habitat focal areas (HFAs) and connectivity zones (CZs) Mitigation framework Implementation Outline

37 Mitigation System What should it do? Clearly define impacts and offsets to be able to demonstrate a net conservation benefit Incentivize avoidance or minimization of impacts The mitigation process is a one-time process that ensures operational certainty Incentivize landowners to manage for quality LPC habitat

38 How do we define impacts and habitat conservation ? ACRES impacted or conserved Habitat POTENTIAL Habitat QUALITY TIME that habitat is impacted or conserved

39 Defining impacts Impact Buffers Science Team recommendation based on peer-reviewed science – m based on structure Realistic impact weightings – 100%, 66%, 33% Prior impacts grandfathered

40 Incentives for Avoidance and Minimization of Impacts Costs weighted by where impacts occur – HFAs, CZs, other Impact buffers incentivize clustering of impacts

41 Existing Impacts

42 Buffers of Existing Impacts

43 Mitigation of Impacts Quantify impacts – Buffers of proposed impacts- existing impacts – Habitat assessment—acres, potential, quality, time Remaining impact units may be transferred for other developments One-time cost for industry  Legal assurances, operational certainty, and funding for conservation

44 Conservation Offsets Funding goes to landowners LPC management plan Habitat assessment—acres, potential, quality, time Baseline conservation units  $$ for the landowner  Conservation to offset impacts

45 Annual Conservation Generation Annual assessment of habitat quality Management practices – Prescribed grazing – Tree/brush removal – Prescribed fire – Fence marking – Treatment of non-native & invasive plants – Restoration of grass cover – Management of planted grasses  Annual payments for the landowner based on performance

46 Mitigation System Summary Net conservation benefit and operation certainty Incentivizes avoidance and minimization of impacts Performance-based habitat management system that provides options for landowners Creates new revenue streams for landowners

47 How much does it cost/pay? Developing base costs for impact and conservation units: – What is required to meet conservation goals? – How much impact do we expect? – What is the cost for implementing practices? – How much do landowners need to make the program attractive? – What would industry consider to be a reasonable cost?

48 Background on the listing, Range-wide Plan, and how you can be a part of it What should the plan do? Population goals Habitat focal areas (HFAs) and connectivity zones (CZs) Metrics and mitigation framework Implementation Outline

49 Implementation Multiple options for conservation delivery We need a range-wide entity to coordinate conservation information

50 Range-Wide Conservation Coordination Who is WAFWA? Board of Directors—accountability Not a public entity—confidentiality 501(c)(3 ) non-profit organization – Hire staff for conservation delivery – Aside from overhead costs, 85% of the funds goes to conservation and landowners

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52 Written comments Cultural & political issues Economic impacts Personal point of view

53 Written comments Request for extended comment period past 3/11 New science and legal issues Five factors considered in listing - Habitat - - Over utilization - - Disease & predation - - Regulatory mechanism - - Other factors - - multi-state, multi jurisdictional complexity - - Extend listing deadline 90 days past 9/30 -

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55 Written comments Public Comments Processing, Attn: FWS–R2–ES–2012– 0071; Division of Policy and Directives Management; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; 4401 N. Fairfax Drive, MS 2042–PDM; Arlington, VA March 11!

56 For more information: Panhandle Producers & Royalty Owners Association 3131 Bell #209 Amarillo (806)

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