Protect Threatened Fish and Sagebrush Along Ruby Pipeline

Target: Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Goal: Gain better protections for nine endangered fish species and native sagebrush threatened by the Ruby Pipeline running through Wyoming to Oregon.

The 700 mile Ruby Pipeline runs from natural gas fields in Wyoming to Southern Oregon, crossing streams in several states, directly and indirectly disrupting fish and plant habitats. The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has found that in their approval of this pipeline, the Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service violated the Endangered Species Act and the National Environmental Policy Act.

The court is demanding that in reparation they must reevaluate the the potential effects of the pipeline on nine endangered fish and make new analysis of its disturbance of sensitive sagebrush communities. By crossing hundreds of streams, the pipeline directly infringes on the habitat of several endangered fish in Wyoming, Utah, Nevada and Oregon, namely the Cutthroat Trout, the Lost River Sucker, Modoc Sucker, Shortnose Sucker and Warner Sucker. Additionally, extracting 300 million gallons of water is putting four Colorado River fish at risk, including the humpback chub, bonytail chub, Colorado pikeminnow and the razorback sucker. Although the builder promised voluntary measures to ensure reduced impact to fish, these have not been adequately funded or carried out. Disruption and destruction of habitat, as well as the risk to fish of withdrawing so much groundwater were not sufficiently considered or dealt with.

Please demand that the Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service reconsider the serious effects of this major pipeline on endangered fish and sagebrush, and provide ample protective measures to ensure their health and survival.


Dear Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service,

Several endangered fish and the sagebrush habitat of the Western United States are seriously threatened by the Ruby gas pipeline built two years ago through Wyoming, Nevada, Utah and Oregon.

Crossing numerous streams throughout these states, the pipeline fragments species’ habitat corridors and comprimises water quality. The Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service approved the construction of this pipeline even though the environmental analysis was insufficient, the potential risk towards species was not assessed and the builder was not prepared to adequately fund protection of endangered species. The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has found the agencies to have violated federal environmental law, and requests that they ensure more comprehensive protection. Five species of fish are threatened directly by the pipeline’s interference with stream flow, and four other endangered Colorado River fish species are at risk from massive extraction of groundwater for dust suppression and hydrostatic testing. Further, the pipeline infringes upon, and damages the sensitive sagebrush ecosystems of this area.

Please follow through with a more thorough analysis of the environmental impact of the Ruby pipeline, including dangers to endangered fish and plant ecosystems. Provide better protection by ensuring that measures are adequately funded.


[Your Name Here]

Photot credit: RickC via Flickr

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