The Forest Service Allows Mining Company to Determine its own Environmental Impact

Published Mar 23, 2020

What happened: The Trump administration is sidelining scientific experts and allowing a mining company to write its own environmental assessment on a proposed gold mining project in central Idaho. The report, referred to as a biological assessment, would normally be written by the Forest Service or a neutral third-party contractor. This assessment includes an evaluation of the potential impact on threatened and endangered species and plays a key role in determining the economic viability of a project.

Why it matters: By allowing the mining company to write their own biological assessment, the Trump administration is sidelining science in favor of corporate interests. A biological assessment is meant to determine if and how a project will affect critical habitats and species, including those protected under the Endangered Species Act. Without unbiased information, the Forest Service cannot fulfill its mission to “sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of the Nation’s forests and grasslands”.

Learn more about how the Trump administration has committed another attack on endangered species by allowing corporations to determine their own environmental impact.