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The Intersection of Water law and the Endangered Species Act

Ensure your operations are in compliance with the ESA requirements, including the newly adopted revisions to the federal regulations.

Many water professionals do not fully understand what types of water operations require coverage under the ESA, or how to obtain that coverage. This material will help water professionals gain a better understanding of what types of actions trigger the need for ESA coverage and what options are available to obtain coverage. You will also gain a better understanding of how critical habitat is defined in the context of water resources, and what this means for water operations. The material also explains the important ESA role states play in the context of water, and how the ESA integrates with other commonly encountered federal environmental laws. Failing to have a proper understanding of the broad scope of the ESA in the context of water operations can lead to violations resulting in embarrassing negative publicity, costly litigation, and even potential criminal liability.

101 minutes
Certificate of Completion
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Over 34 years and 1.4 million customers worth of experience providing continuing education. Our passion is providing you world-class training to help you succeed in business and as a professional.


Obtaining ESA Coverage Under Section 7 Consultations or Section 10 Habitat Conservation Plans

  • Section 7 Application to Agency Actions Involving Water Rights
  • Section 10 Habitat Conservation Plans
  • Why Is Coverage Needed? The Section 9 Take Prohibition

Fifth Amendment Takings

  • Regulatory vs. Physical Takings in Water Rights

Critical Habitat and Aquatic Species

  • Effect of Weyerhaeuser Co. v. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Decision
  • Reconciling Weyerhauser's Capable of Being Occupied Standard With Babbitt v. Sweet Home Chapter of Communities for a Greater Oregon

Effect of Revised ESA Regulations on Water Diversions and Rights

  • Revised Regulations for Listing Species and Designating Critical Habitat
  • Revised Regulations for Prohibitions to Threatened Wildlife and Plants
  • Revised Regulations for Interagency Cooperation [Delayed Effective Date]
  • Implications for Water Professionals

The States, the ESA, and Allocation of Water

  • State Involvement in the ESA
  • State Endangered Species Laws
  • How the ESA Affects Water Disputes Between the States: Florida vs. Georgia
  • How the ESA Affects Clean Water Act Disputes: County of Maui v. Hawaii Wildlife Fund
  • How the ESA Affects FERC Licensing Proceedings
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Why Lorman?

Over 34 years and 1.4 million customers worth of experience providing continuing education. Our passion is providing you world-class training to help you succeed in business and as a professional.


OnDemand Course

This course was last revised on December 20, 2019.

Call 1-866-352-9540 for further credit information.

  • NY CLE 1.5 including Areas of Professional Practice 1.5
  • This course has been approved in accordance with the requirements of the New York Continuing Legal Education Board for up to a maximum of 1.5 credit hours in the area(s) of Areas of Professional Practice for 1.50 hours. Each hour may be counted only as satisfying one category of credit. Duplicate credit for the same hour of instruction is not permitted. This course qualifies for both established and newly admitted attorneys. Lorman Business Center, LLC. has a financial hardship guideline. Please contact customer service at 1.866.352.9539 for instructions on how to apply.
The CLE Code is ONLY a requirement when applying for CLE Credit in New York. Other states do not need to supply the CLE Code to apply for CLE credit.

To earn each credit Lorman offers through the OnDemand learning platform, you need to watch 100% of the program. Also, for certain credits you will need to fulfill additional requirements which will be displayed on the "credits" tab when viewing the course.

This program does NOT qualify, nor meet the National Standard for NASBA accreditation.

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Why Lorman?

Over 34 years and 1.4 million customers worth of experience providing continuing education. Our passion is providing you world-class training to help you succeed in business and as a professional.


Jennifer Buckman

Jennifer Buckman

Bartkiewicz, Kronick& Shanahan

  • Shareholder with Bartkiewicz, Kronick & Shanahan, a boutique firm focusing on environmental and water law
  • Practice focuses on representing public agencies and private clients on water issues involving the federal and state Endangered Species Acts, federal reclamation and other water supply laws, and the California Environmental Quality Act and the National Environmental Policy Act; she has been litigating ESA issues for more than 20 years and has represented clients throughout California and in other parts of the west
  • Following the supreme court's unanimous decision in favor of her clients in Bennett v. Spear, she obtained one of the first district court decisions in the country overturning a biological opinion as "arbitrary and capricious"
  • She has also negotiated complex multiparty water settlements, such as the San Joaquin River Restoration settlement agreement and its federal implementing legislation, Public Law 111-11, which established an experimental population to reestablish California Central Valley Spring Run Chinook salmon in the San Joaquin River
  • Obtained her law degree from University of California's Boalt Hall School of Law, where she served on Ecology Law Quarterly
  • Serves as chair of the Legal Affairs Committee for the Association of California Water Agencies, and she frequently speaks on water law issues and topics and has been recognized by her peers as "best of the bar"
  • Can be contacted at [email protected] or 916-446-4254
Meredith E. Nikkel

Meredith E. Nikkel

Downey Brand LLP

  • Partner in the Water Practice Group at Downey Brand LLP in Sacramento, California
  • Practice addresses complex legal issues with novel solutions at all levels from administrative proceedings before the California State Water Resources Control Board to state and federal trial and appellate courts
  • Has successfully defended public agencies in writ proceedings, settled multi-party groundwater disputes both informally and in court, and represented a broad group of water users in administrative and state court proceedings related to the California WaterFix project
  • In representing clients across California, regularly analyzes ethical issues related to representations of individuals, private entities and public entities as well as potential conflicts of interest and conclusion of representation
  • An editor of the California Water Law & Policy Reporter and was named one of the Sacramento Business Journal's Top 40 Under 40 in 2019
  • After graduating from University of California at Berkeley and Stanford Law School, Meredith was a law clerk to the Honorable Barry Silverman of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals
  • Can be contacted at 916-444-1000 or [email protected]
Kathy Robb

Kathy Robb

Sive, Paget & Riesel P.C.

  • Partner with Sive, Paget & Riesel, P.C. in New York City
  • Practice focuses on environmental litigation on water-related issues before federal district and appellate courts across the country and in the U.S. Supreme Court, and on environmental issues in complex transactions often involving water issues; she represents clients on water-related disputes, water adequacy, endangered species issues, environmental impact reviews, river sites with contaminated sediments, solid and hazardous waste issues, and sites with contaminated groundwater
  • Has represented clients in litigation about the All-American Canal lining and Glen Canyon Dam on the Colorado River; about the silvery minnow on the Rio Grande River, and about the whooping crane on the Guadalupe and San Antonio Rivers - those cases involved claims under the Clean Water Act (CWA), the Endangered Species Act (ESA), the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, and the Grand Canyon Protection Act, among other statutes and common law claims
  • Serves as vice-chair of the Waterfront Alliance in New York City; is a former board member and currently the president of the Environmental Law Institute’s Leadership Council in Washington, DC; and has served as chair of the New York City Bar’s Environmental Committee and on its Executive Committee; she chaired the 31st Annual Water Law Conference in 2013 and was elected to the American College of Environmental Lawyers in 2016, where she heads the Regional Programs Committee
  • She is recognized as a leading environmental lawyer in Chambers USA, Super Lawyers, International Who’s Who Legal, Who’s Who Legal, and Best Lawyers in America
  • Can be contacted at [email protected] or 646-378-7248
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Over 34 years and 1.4 million customers worth of experience providing continuing education. Our passion is providing you world-class training to help you succeed in business and as a professional.

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Product ID: 405160
Published 2019
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