A Database of Habitat Conservation Plans and Related Documents Developed Under the U.S. Endangered Species Act

A Database of Habitat Conservation Plans and Related Documents Developed Under the U.S. Endangered Species Act

A Database of Habitat Conservation Plans and Related Documents Developed Under the U.S. Endangered Species Act

A Database of Habitat Conservation Plans and Related Documents Developed Under the U.S. Endangered Species Act

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Abstract

Under the U.S. Endangered Species Act, non-federal parties may be permitted to take, or harm, listed threatened and endangered species provided they develop an appropriate habitat conservation plan that details how the applicant will minimize and mitigate the impacts of their activities on the species at issue. Despite widespread use of such plans, with more than 700 approved to date, there have been few systematic analyses to determine their effectiveness in protecting imperiled wildlife. This has been driven by a lack of a centralized repository of essential habitat conservation plan documents, from the plans themselves to required monitoring reports. Here we present a new data resource of 6,290 documents related to 601 separate HCPs, assembled through a United States Freedom of Information Act request to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, supplemented by web scraping of available HCP documents online. We describe the completeness of responses, characterize the scope of documents, and identify data and research gaps.

Publication
OSF Preprints
ESA habitat conservation plans
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Andrew Carter
Senior Conservation Policy Analyst

As a Senior Conservation Policy Analyst in the Center for Conservation Innovation at Defenders, Andrew researches and analyzes conservation governance strategies and emerging policy issues.

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