Mayor and City Council of Flagstaff Arizona: Stop Irreversible Damage to the Habitat of the Federally Threatened SanFrancisco Peaks Groundsel
The federally threatened San Francisco Peaks groundsel (Packera Franciscana) is found only in the alpine zone of the San Francisco Peaks. The San Francisco Peaks Groundsel is protected by Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act. The August 24, 2012 environmental study conducted by SWCA Environmental Consultants and Sonoma Technology, Inc. indicates that the habitat of the groundsel will be adversely affected by the overspray of reclaimed wastewater that the City of Flagstaff intends to sell to Arizona Snowbowl for the making of artificial snow. This extensive study provides the only snow transport modeling and analysis report on record that establishes its data as the “best available science”. This study makes evident that a substantial amount of nitrogen-enriched treated sewage effluent overspray and drift was not accounted for in the proposed snowmaking plan at Arizona Snowbowl. The omission of snow dispersion by wind is a gross oversight that imminently threatens the critical habitat and long term existence of the federally threatened San Francisco Peaks Groundsel. The Mayor and City Council of Flagstaff, Arizona have a moral and legal obligation to citizens of Flagstaff to perform their duties with integrity and to abstain from actions that violate Federal law. If the City of Flagstaff participated in a project that adversely affects a listed species or its habit, especially for commercial gain, it would be in direct violation of the Endangered Species Act and would be a failure of their moral and legal responsibilities. The Mayor and City Council of Flagstaff also have an obligation to all Americans and to all of Creation to prevent action that endangers the long term existence of the threatened San Francisco Peaks groundsel.