Jerry Patterson Updates TexasGOPVote About the Endangered Species Status of the Sand Dunes Sagebrush Lizard

Texas Land Commissioner updates TexasGOPVote on the Endangered Species status of the Sand Dunes Sagebrush Lizard. He explains that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which is responsible for the enforcement of the Endangered Species Act, entered into a settlement, which was approved by the court to queue up about 800 species for possible addition to the endangered species status. Among these species is the Dunes Sagebrush Lizard, which if added, will not be good for Texas. The habitat of this lizard is in the Permian Basin. The Permian Basin is arguably the largest reserve of petroleum in the lower 48 states, which is a great benefit to the Texas economy and for independence from foreign oil. Patterson explains he's helping to fight this ruling .

Transcript: Well last week, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which is responsible for the enforcement of the Endangered Species Act, entered into a settlement, which was approved by the court to queue up about 800 species for possible addition to the endangered species status. Among these species is the Dunes Sagebrush Lizard, which has been petitioned already that either this December, or there may be a six month delay, the Dunes Sagebrush Lizard will be added to the Endangered Species List. That's not good for Texas. It's also not good for the process and the legitimacy of the Endangered Species Act because there is no evidence that says that this lizard is endangered. It's being designated primarily because of litigation by a couple of groups, one of them is the Wild Earth Gardens. The other is the Center for Biodiversity. When that happens, the Texas General Land Office will intervene in federal court to try to stop the designation based upon there is no science, based upon the process to make this determination is the result of settling the lawsuits as opposed to doing the research. We hope to stop it or delay it, and this is really important to Texas because the habitat of this lizard is in the Permian Basin. The Permian Basin is arguably the largest reserve of petroleum in the lower 48 states, if not, the second largest, anyway, it's in the very top. It's a tremendous benefit to the Texas economy, for the U.S. economy, for independence from foreign oil sources, and this is a catastrophic, could be a very catastrophic in Texas. So we're fighting it now. We're trying to stop the designation to the extent that we can, but we will be going to court to try to stop the designation if it occurs, which is likely either in December or maybe there's a six month delay, and we'll be going to court, and it's something I've been very focused on.

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