The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced last week that a listing of the dunes sagebrush lizard as a threatened or endangered species is not warranted.
The Texas Conservation Plan, led by Texas Comptroller Susan Combs, is a major reason the lizard was not listed.
U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and USFWS Director Dan Ashe made the announcement after the federal agency reviewed data about the lizard for more than a year.
“This is a major victory for Texas jobs and our energy economy,” Combs said. “Working with energy producers and other stakeholders, we were able to enroll nearly 250,000 acres in West Texas as part of the Texas Conservation Plan. This decision proves we don’t have to choose between the environment and our economy, but can be good stewards of both. Energy exploration is the economic lifeblood of West Texas, and I am delighted we were able to come up with a creative solution that protects paychecks, property rights and jobs.”