Seattle Post Intelligencer 5/8/2013
Excerpt: “A judge has told the U.S. Forest Service to pay $70,804.19 in legal fees to two lawyers who helped win a lawsuit that will force removal of the historic, rebuilt Green Mountain Lookout from the summit of a popular hiking trail in Washington’s Glacier Peak Wilderness Area.
Senior U.S. District Judge John Coughenour approved compensating attorney Peter M.K. Frost of Oregon at rates of $410 an hour for work done in 2010, rising to $425 an hour for work done on the suit in 2011 and 2012. Junior counsel John R. Mellgren, also of Oregon, was ordered to be compensated at a lower rate of $184.32 an hour. Both Frost and Mellgren work for the Western Environmental Law Center, which frequently sues the Forest Service. …”
Read entire article at http://blog.seattlepi.com/seattlepolitics/2013/05/08/u-s-judge-awards-70804-to-anti-lookout-lawyers/
Summit County Voice 4/27/2013
Excerpt: “FRISCO — Colorado lawmakers in Washington, D.C. are reaching across party lines to try and protect more than 100,000 acres of the Hermosa Creek watershed north of Durango.
U.S. Senator Michael Bennet (D-CO) and Rep. Scott Tipton(R-CO) are introducing companion bills that would establish management for the Hermosa Creek Watershed based on recommendations from the Hermosa Creek River Protection Workgroup. The panel includes local water officials, conservationists, sportsmen, mountain bikers, off-road-vehicle users, outfitters, property owners, grazing permit holders and other interested citizens. …”
Read entire article at http://summitcountyvoice.com/2013/04/27/colorado-hermosa-creek-conservation-bill-gets-a-bipartisan-introduction-in-congress/
Spokseman Review 4/11/2013
Excerpt: “A Montana court ruling has added a legal roadblock to plans by a Spokane company to develop a large silver and copper mine in northwest Montana, including a portion that bores under the Cabinet Mountains Wilderness.
Following a court process that began in 2007, a judge in Lincoln County, Mont., ruled that Mines Management Inc. and its Libby-based subsidiary, Montanore Minerals, cannot use sections of its existing mine entrance for its planned Montanore Project. …”
Read entire article at http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2013/apr/11/ruling-stalls-montana-mining-project/
San Gabriel Valley Tribune 3/27/2013
Excerpt: “For the past seven years, the The U.S. Forest Service has been attempting to find a way to protect 37 roadless areas while keeping the public happy. More protection in the form of wilderness zoning would help the California condor, the California gnatcatcher, least bell’s vireo, the mountain yellow-legged frog and the Santa Ana sucker fish by limiting uses within these sensitive species’ habitat.
But in 2006, the state resources agency and environmental groups, including The Wilderness Society and the Sierra Club, sued saying the Forest Service was doing a poor job protecting these precious lands. Later, the two sides settled, agreeing to zone more roadless areas into “back county non-motorized” zones and as “recommended wilderness” areas. ….”http://www.sgvtribune.com/news/ci_22886614/mountain-bikers-environmentalists-clash-over-angeles-national-forest
Read entire article at
Elko Daily Free Press 3/11/2013
Excerpt: “RENO (AP) — The U.S. government says environmentalists are back in court on nothing more than a “fishing expedition” in a decade-old attempt to again close 1.5 miles of a gravel road along a threatened trout stream near the Nevada-Idaho line leading to some of the most remote, federally protected wilderness in the nation.
The conservationists insist they’re trying to save the fish — a job they say has fallen to them because the U.S. Forest Service has shirked its responsibility to enforce locally unpopular laws. ….”
Read entire article at http://elkodaily.com/news/lawyers-environmentalists-continue-court-fight-over-trout/article_7139e06c-89ea-11e2-9275-001a4bcf887a.html
Courthouse News 3/5/2013
Excerpt: “ (CN) – The U.S. Forest Service did not violate environmental law in its nearly 20-year effort to repair a flood-damaged road near a Nevada wilderness area, the 9th Circuit ruled.
South Canyon Road, in Elko County, Nev., is the only way to the Snowslide Gulch Wilderness Portal in the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest’s Jarbidge Wilderness. The Jarbidge River flooded in 1995 and damaged the road, cutting off access to most vehicles.
For several years the U.S Forest Service worked on a plan to repair the road, while Great Old Broads for Wilderness and the Wilderness Society proposed replacing much of it with a hiking trail. ……”
Read entire article at http://www.courthousenews.com/2013/03/05/55449.htm
Excerpt: “BOISE — The quality and safety of the Frank Church-River of No Return Wilderness has diminished in recent years thanks to wildfires, weather and neglect, and now Idaho lawmakers want federal forest officials to make trail repair in the vast backcountry a priority.
On Thursday, the Idaho House Resources and Conservation Committee unanimously endorsed a non-binding resolution that urges the head of the U.S. Forest Service to declare the wilderness area and surrounding national forest a natural resources disaster area. The measure also asks the federal agency to take steps now to improve conditions of the 2,500-mile trail system or make things easier for a legion of Idaho volunteers to do the job. …..”
Read entire article at http://www.oregonlive.com/environment/index.ssf/2013/02/idaho_house_panel_endorses_fra.html
Ravalli Republic 2/21/2013
Excerpt: “After a near-miss last year, the Rocky Mountain Front Heritage Act has been reintroduced in the 113th Congress, on the 100th anniversary of the Sun River Game Preserve.
The bill, co-sponsored by Montana Sens. Max Baucus and Jon Tester, would protect wilderness, ranching and recreation opportunities in the mountain range between Augusta and Dupuyer, west of Great Falls. It would designate 208,000 acres as a conservation management area that allows motorized access, biking and other current uses, add another 67,000 acres to the Bob Marshall Wilderness Complex, and support noxious weed prevention programs for agricultural and public lands across the Front. …..”
Read entire story at http://www.ravallirepublic.com/news/state-and-regional/c5ad0fe9-a231-5a80-af68-9cc51ac22a21.html
Excerpt: “Last week, Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) and Congressman Dave Reichert (R-WA) reintroduced legislation called the Alpine Lakes Wilderness Additions and Pratt and Middle Fork Snoqualmie Rivers Protection Act.
This legislation would expand the Alpine Lakes Wilderness and designate both the Pratt and Middle Fork Snoqualmie Rivers as Wild and Scenic. The Alpine Lakes Wilderness is a massive area stretching across 390,000 acres along the Cascade Mountain Range and includes such scenic gems as the Wenatchee National Forest and Snoqualmie National Forest. …..”
Read entire article at http://www.examiner.com/article/protecting-washington-s-alpine-lakes-wilderness-draws-bipartisan-effort
Taos News 1/15/2013
Excerpt: “The state Court of Appeals has dismissed a challenge by the New Mexico Cattle Growers’ Association, allowing protective designations of perennial waters within wilderness areas to move forward.
The association’s appeal was filed to challenge a 2010 decision by the state Water Quality Control Commission (WQCC) to designate 700 miles of perennial rivers and streams, 29 lakes and nearly 5,000 acres of wetlands as Outstanding Natural Resource Waters (ONRWs). ….”
Read entire article at http://www.taosnews.com/news/article_7212e00e-5e68-11e2-869c-0019bb2963f4.html