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DOC/NOAA RIN: 0648-BA78 Publication ID: Fall 2011 
Title: Interim Policy Interpreting the Phrase 'Significant Portion of Its Range' in the Endangered Species Act's Definitions 
Abstract: The proposed policy interprets the phrase "significant portion of its range" in the Endangered Species Act's definitions of "endangered species" and "threatened species." The phrase is ambiguous and is not defined in the ESA, and its interpretation and application have been subject to litigation. The FWS' current interpretation, which NMFS did not adopt, has been rejected by the court. FWS, therefore, needs to propose an alternative interpretation and seek public review and comment, and because both agencies implement the ESA, we are doing this jointly so that we will have the same guidance. 
Agency: Department of Commerce(DOC)  Priority: Substantive, Nonsignificant 
RIN Status: Previously published in the Unified Agenda Agenda Stage of Rulemaking: Proposed Rule Stage 
Major: No  Unfunded Mandates: No 
EO 13771 Designation: uncollected 
CFR Citation: 50 CFR 424.02   
Legal Authority: 16 USC 1531 et seq   
Legal Deadline:  None
Action Date FR Cite
NPRM  12/00/2011    
Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required: No  Government Levels Affected: Federal, Local, State, Tribal 
Small Entities Affected: No  Federalism: No 
Included in the Regulatory Plan: No 
RIN Data Printed in the FR: No 
Related Agencies: Joint: DOI/FWS; 
Agency Contact:
James H. Lecky
Director, Office of Protected Resources
Department of Commerce
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
1315 East-West Highway,
Silver Spring, MD 20910
Phone:301 713-2332
Fax:301 427-2520