Endangered Species in Eagle Ford Shale Gets Help From UT GroupSource: Fuel Fix | 7 October 2014
Few people have heard of the spot-tailed earless lizard, once common in south Texas.
But the rare lizard’s likely habitat includes large swaths of the Eagle Ford shale, the prolific oil and gas field south of San Antonio. A 2010 petition by an environmental group to list the spot-tailed earless lizard as a federally protected species is hanging in limbo.
“Basically, the proverbial you-know-what is going to hit the fan if they propose to list it,” said Melinda Taylor, executive director of the Center for Global Energy, International Arbitration and Environmental Law, at The University of Texas at Austin School of Law.
US Fish and Wildlife in 2011 said there was substantial information that listing the spot-tailed earless lizard as endangered or threatened may be warranted. It is the first step in what can be a years-long process to list a species–but it does not mean that the lizard ultimately will receive any kind of listing to try to ensure its survival.
Meanwhile, the Eagle Ford is rapidly approaching the 1 million B/D mark for crude oil production.