Flathead Beacon 5/21/2013
Excerpt: “Environmental groups have filed a lawsuit to halt a U.S. Forest Service timber sale in Kootenai National Forest, arguing that it would harm critical habitat for grizzly bears and Canada lynx, both of which are protected by the Endangered Species Act.
On May 14, the Western Environmental Law Center filed the complaint in U.S. District Court in Missoula on behalf of the Alliance for the Wild Rockies. The complaint alleges that the proposed Young Dodge logging project violates the Endangered Species Act, National Forest Management Act and National Environmental Policy Act. …”
Read entire article at http://www.flatheadbeacon.com/articles/article/environmental_groups_sue_to_halt_timber_sale_near_lake_koocanusa/33542/
Knoxville News Sentinel 5/20/2013
Excerpt: “COSBY, Tenn. — At the eastern end of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, not far from Cosby, Tenn., are three 25-foot-tall hemlock trees enveloped in nylon that appear out of nowhere like circus tents in the middle of the forest.
They’re called canopy cages. Six years ago the University of Tennessee and the U.S. Forest Service tested them at Blackberry Farm in Blount County, and now they’re being employed in the Smokies to help control the hemlock woolly adelgid, a tiny, nonnative insect pest that has been killing the park’s hemlocks for more than a decade. ….”
Read entire article at http://www.knoxnews.com/news/2013/may/20/smokies-add-2-new-beetles-canopy-cages-in-fight/?partner=RSS
Excerpt: “A coalition of environmental groups have sued to block a U.S. Forest Service timber sale in the Rexford Ranger District of northwest Montana, claiming the proposed clearcuts would hurt lynx and grizzly bears there.
“In spite of these falling grizzly bear numbers, the Forest Service plans to commercially log thousands of acres, open up roads, and use low-level helicopter flights in occupied grizzly habitat,” said Michael Garrity of the Alliance for the Wild Rockies. “It’s well-known science that low-level overflights by helicopters harm and harass grizzly bears in violation of the Endangered Species Act. Even though we cited the law, judicial opinions, and the agency’s own policies that ban such activities, the Forest Service refused to listen. So now we’re compelled to go to court.” …”
Read entire article at http://missoulian.com/news/state-and-regional/environmental-groups-sue-to-block-kootenai-forest-timber-sale/article_ffcfd8e4-bcfe-11e2-95e4-001a4bcf887a.html
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
Washington Post 5/3/2013
Excerpt: “WASHINGTON — The U.S. Forest Service is in the business of preventing fires, not starting them. Yet the agency set off alarms in Congress and state capitols across the West by citing the automatic spending cuts as the basis for demanding that dozens of states return $17.9 million in federal subsidies. And it’s all come down to a bureaucratic squabble over whether the money is subject to so-called sequestration because of the year it was paid — 2013 — as the Obama administration contends, or exempt from the cuts because of the year it was generated — 2012 — as the states insist.
Right now, it’s a standoff heightened by history and hard fiscal realities. …”
Read entire article at http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/forest-service-push-for-return-of-subsidy-money-stokes-concern-about-breadth-of-spending-cuts/2013/05/03/b6f06960-b3c4-11e2-9fb1-62de9581c946_story.html
Associated Press 5/2/2013
Excerpt: “JUNEAU, Alaska — Alaska’s governor is refusing to repay more than $800,000 to the U.S. Forest Service due to automatic federal budget cuts.
Gov. Sean Parnell, in a letter to the agency’s chief, says he doesn’t believe the Forest Service is authorized to demand the money back. He won’t ask the Legislature to consider the request. Parnell says the amount in question includes $707,000 that’s already been paid to the state and $118,000 not yet allocated. …”
Read entire article at http://www.oregonlive.com/pacific-northwest-news/index.ssf/2013/05/alaska_governor_refuses_forest.html
JD Supra Law News 5/2/2013
Excerpt: “On April 25, 2013, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit invalidated a consent decree that plaintiffs and three federal agency defendants asserted resolved a dispute spanning more than a decade. See Conservation Nw. v. Sherman, No. 11-35729 (9th Cir. 2013) (pdf). In doing so, the Ninth Circuit held that the district court abused its discretion when it entered the consent decree because it bypassed statutorily mandated public-participation procedures.
The Northwest Forest Plan applies to approximately 24.5 million acres of federal land spanning from San Francisco to the Canadian border. ….”
Read entire article at http://www.jdsupra.com/legalnews/ninth-circuit-invalidates-consent-decree-85062/
Deseret News 4/17/2013
Excerpt: “SALT LAKE CITY — Members of the Western Governors’ Association, including Utah Gov. Gary Herbert, said forests are in such bad shape the federal government should turn to industry — like logging — for help.
“We have been concerned for some time that federal forest lands throughout the West are experiencing serious environmental stresses that affect the health and vitality of these ecosystems. They are overgrown; they exhibit all the symptoms of an unhealthy ecosystem; and they demand urgent attention.” …”
Read entire article at http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865578463/Western-governors-want-private-sector-to-help-manage-forests.html
Summit County Voice 4/18/2013
Excerpt: “SUMMIT COUNTY — Federal land managers could get wider authority for more backcountry logging under a new bill introduced in the U.S. Senate by three western senators: Mark Udall (D-CO), Ron Wyden (D-OR), and Max Baucus (D-MT).
The National Forest Insect and Disease Treatment Act is being pitched as a way to help Forest Service treat insect and disease epidemics and promote overall forest health. As drafted, it directs the agency to treat threatened watersheds while prioritizing preservation of old-growth and large trees when possible. …”
Read entire article at http://summitcountyvoice.com/2013/04/18/environment-can-forest-health-be-legislated/
Fairfield Sun Times 4/16/2013
Excerpt: “WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Steve Daines today announced that he has joined Natural Resources Committee Chairman Doc Hastings (WA-04) in introducing legislation to address the expiration of the Secure Rural Schools (SRS) program by renewing the federal government’s commitment to manage forest resources.
“The responsible and active management of our National Forests is critical for the health of Montana’s economy, as well as the health of our forests themselves,” Daines stated. “The Restoring Healthy Forests for Healthy Communities Act will cut the red tape that has held up responsible forest management and timber production and ensure that the federal government keeps its commitment to Montana’s rural schools and counties.” …”
Read entire article at http://www.fairfieldsuntimes.com/articles/2013/04/16/news/doc516d7597601eb592609241.txt