Environmental groups that sued to throw out a federal plan allowing new exploration and mining on public lands heralded a recent win in court that they said was vital to protect greater sage grouse.

sage grouse

A federal judge on Thursday overturned a Trump administration decision to jettison sage grouse protections from 10 million acres in the West, primarily in Nevada and Idaho, and open the land to exploration and mining. The plan was part of a broader deregulation effort by former President Trump.

U.S. District Judge Lynn Winmill in Idaho said the Department of Interior’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) failed to provide an adequate reason to disregard “all of the prior expert findings” that pointed to “continued population declines and habitat losses” for sage grouse if...