Interpreting the word "harm" -- used in the Endangered Species Act, 1973 -- in favour of the environmentalist lobby, the US Supreme Court recently upheld an Interior Department regulation to protect species like the northern spotted owl and the red-cockaded woodpecker. The regulation includes destruction of an endangered animal's habitat within the ambit of the word. Timber industry and landowners' rights activists had challenged the regulation, saying it gave an overly broad interpretation of the word.
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