Rapid City Journal 5/15/2013
Excerpt: “Black Hills National Forest management policies on fighting wildfires and mountain pine beetles have won another court challenge by environmental groups who believe the policies hurt sensitive wildlife species.
A recent decision in Wyoming federal court released Tuesday by South Dakota Attorney General Marty Jackley upheld an amended management plan for the Black Hills National Forest. South Dakota joined in the lawsuit in support of the U.S. Forest Service, as did the state of Wyoming and the Black Hills Forest Resource Association, a timber industry association. …”
Read entire article at http://rapidcityjournal.com/news/black-hills-forest-management-survives-latest-environmental-challenge/article_ad436d4f-500b-5283-a0f3-9fa3c7e3cf2e.html
Rapid City Journal 4/14/2013
Excerpt: “OUR VIEW: Fighting mountain pine beetle infestation on federal properties a higher priority than buying more land. South Dakota’s Sen. John Thune and Rep. Kristi Noem are sponsoring legislation that would pump more money into pine beetle control projects on U.S. Forest Service lands. While there’s little opposition to funding beetle projects on national forests, the controversy comes from the source of the funds.
Thune’s legislation, and Noem’s companion bill in the House, would take money earmarked for Forest Service land acquisition for five years and spend it on timber management projects to control insects and reduce wildfire risks. …”
Read entire article at http://rapidcityjournal.com/news/opinion/editorial-take-care-of-what-you-own/article_ac8445e5-507b-5b46-93f5-2ef988cd4b0a.html
Bismarck Tribune Editorial 4/11/2013
Excerpt: “A fire ripping across grasslands burns more than grass. It consumes hard work, expectations and dreams.
The Pautre Fire last week burned 14,000 acres of federal and private grasslands southwest of Lemmon, S.D. It burned pasture for spring calving, feed stocks and fences. It torched hopes for carrying cattle through the summer and, maybe, into the fall, for profit. ….”
Read entire editorial at http://bismarcktribune.com/news/opinion/editorial/burden-for-forest-service-mistake-falls-on-ranchers/article_223eac5a-a1e0-11e2-a5fd-001a4bcf887a.html
Summit County Voice 4/9/2013
Excerpt: “SUMMIT COUNTY — U.S. Forest Service programs touted as forest health work be the the primary threats to two populations of black-backed woodpeckers.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service this week said it will consider those threats to the rare birds in California, Oregon and the Black Hills of South Dakota as it makes a review to determine whether to protect the birds under the Endangered Species Act.
Some of the primary threats to the populations that were included in the petition include post-disturbance salvage logging, active fire suppression that limits the acreage and severity of fires each year, and forest thinning programs. ….”
See entire article and link to proposed listing at http://summitcountyvoice.com/2013/04/09/usfws-to-consider-endangered-species-listing-for-woodpeckers-that-rely-on-post-fire-habitat/
Aberdeen News 4/7/2013
Excerpt: “HETTINGER, N.D. (AP) — A U.S. Forest Service official has apologized for a fire that burned more than 16 square miles of Dakotas grassland after flames escaped from a prescribed burn southeast of Hettinger.
“The Forest Service is extremely regretful that the fire escaped the containment area,” Grand River District Ranger Paul Hancock said during a public meeting Saturday in Hettinger with nearly 100 farmers and ranchers. …”
Read entire article at http://www.aberdeennews.com/news/sns-ap-nd–grassland-fire-20130407,0,6048856.story
Environmental News Network 3/28/2013
Excerpt: “Despite the unabated threat of a devastating fungal disease that has already killed nearly 7 million hibernating bats, U.S. Forest Service officials released a plan today to rescind their three-year-old precautionary cave closure policy in the Rocky Mountain Region, including in Colorado and much of Wyoming and South Dakota. The new policy, described in an environmental assessment posted to the Forest Service website, reopens all caves in the region to recreational activities, nullifying an aggressive approach to containing white-nose syndrome unique among western federal land agencies. ….”
Read entire article at http://www.enn.com/wildlife/article/45779
Rapid City Journal 3/28/2013
Excerpt: “South Dakota’s congressional delegation is united in the battle against the mountain pine beetle but divided over recent legislation that would divert U.S. Forest Service land-acquisition funds into bug-control projects.
Republican Sen. John Thune has introduced legislation that would prevent the U.S. Forest Service from making land acquisitions for five years and use the money saved for timber management to control pine beetles and reduce wildfire threats.
Read entire article at http://rapidcityjournal.com/news/south-dakota-congressional-delegation-split-on-legislation-blocking-forest-service/article_302f527d-0611-5c8e-b0aa-31b2fb2fcc2f.html
Rapid City Journal 1/8/2013
Excerpt: “So far, nobody has been shot. The U.S. Forest Service hopes to keep it that way.
This week, The Forest Service will close to target shooting the popular Railroad Buttes off-road riding area southeast of Rapid City, following increased reports of “near-miss” incidents when shooters fired in the direction of off-road riders. ….”
Read entire article at http://rapidcityjournal.com/news/forest-officials-face-conflicts-between-shooters-off-road-riders/article_e6506113-1882-5c8f-84e4-2b6a0cae6723.html
Aberdeen News 12/18/2012
Excerpt: “RAPID CITY, S.D. (AP) — The Black Hills National Forest plans to use extensive commercial tree thinning to battle the mountain pine beetle as part of a $70 million plan that will take five to seven years to implement.
The plan developed over more than a year will target 248,000 acres of vulnerable woodlands within the 1.2-million-acre forest in western South Dakota and northeastern Wyoming, according to Forest Supervisor Craig Bobzien. ….”
Read entire article athttp://www.aberdeennews.com/news/sns-ap-sd–forest-pine-beetles-20121218,0,5701694.story
Rapid City Journal 11/18/2012
Excerpt: “Federal officials are scrambling to protect bats in the Black Hills from white-nose syndrome, a catastrophic fungus that has set off a bat apocalypse from New York to Missouri, wiping out more than 6 million of the flying mammals — 90 percent or more of some bat species — over the past six years.
The syndrome’s virulence forced the Forest Service to take some drastic steps despite a lack of proof that humans can carry and transfer the fungus to bats. In July 2010, the U.S. Forest Service issued an emergency order to close all caves and abandoned mines for a year in South Dakota, Colorado, Wyoming, Nebraska and Kansas. …..”
Read entire article at http://rapidcityjournal.com/news/effort-to-keep-deadly-bat-fungus-out-of-black-hills/article_e40f911c-bf34-5f8f-b7ac-347473e0abc8.html?comment_form=true