law final - -1Ashley Harper 905152398 December 16, 2008 Law...

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-1Ashley Harper 905152398 December 16, 2008 Law of Critical Environments Final Exam 1. A) Regulatory taking is an instance when a law so affects one's property as to be deemed the equivalent of inverse condemnation. In the case of regulatory taking, the government exercises its right to eminent domain, the power to take private property for public use by the federal, state or local government. The government has the power through eminent domain to use easement for construction of roads and sidewalks as well as deem property valueless because of new regulations and classifications of land. In the case of Lucas v. South Carolina Coastal Council , the court declared that if the regulation is harm-preventing, then it is not a taking. However, if the regulation does diminish all economic value of the property it is considered a taking. Because of the Beachfront Management Act, Lucas was unable to build the houses he planned on the property he purchased. The court decided that it was not a taking because Lucas conceded that it was a valid excise of police power. The Endangered Species Act (ESA) also gives the government the right to take, however this act does not involve land. Species are listed as endangered or threatened "solely on the basis of the best scientific and commercial data available" and make them protected by law. The ESA prohibits "taking" of endangered species. In this sense, "taking" means to "harass, harm, pursue, hunt, shoot, wound, kill, trap, capture or collect, or to attempt to engage in any such conduct". "Taking" also includes the activities that result in "significant environmental modification or degradation". When "taking" of an endangered species occurs the government has authority to act through three different courses of action. The government may impose civil penalties and criminal penalties and citizens are also granted the right to bring a civil action in district court. In Rabbitt v. Sweet Home Chapter of Communities for a Greater Oregon , the court gave authorization to the Secretary to grant permits for incidental takes for indirect takings. Justice O’Connor stated that the statute applies where significant habitat modification, by impairing significant behaviors proximately and foreseeably
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causes death or injurt to protected animals. B) Landowners have the ability to participate in Conservation Easements . Agricultural land, ground and surface water, wildlife habitat, historic sites and lands with scenic views are all likely candidates to become conservation easements. The landowner sells the right to develop his/her land to a government agency or private conservation organization in order to continue the conservation of the land. The purchase price is usually the difference between value of land with development rights and value of land without development rights and is a permanent transaction. The decision to sell land is completely voluntary and the land remains private property. A perk of
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This note was uploaded on 02/10/2009 for the course UAP 4344 taught by Professor Jesserichardson during the Fall '08 term at Virginia Tech.

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law final - -1Ashley Harper 905152398 December 16, 2008 Law...

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