Board Feet From Logs?

mcready at mcready at
Tue Oct 14 12:04:19 EST 1997

In article <3442C544.6297 at>,
  Joseph Zorzin <redoak at> wrote:
> mcready at wrote:
> >
> > Environmentalists are always harping about save the white pine, save the
> > red pine, save this tree, etc.  They have recently calls for 'zero-cut' in
> > National Forests, which to me doesn't represent forest management at all.
> If all cutting on National Forests was stopped, the timber prices on
> private land would go up, and since I sell timber off private land- my
> fees would go up- so if I want to be selfish which of course is the WAY
> in our greedy capitalist society - I should encourage stopping such
> National Forest harvesting. <G>
> >
> > Why do many environmentalists have log homes?  If we should 'save all our
> > trees' why aren't they crying about all the trees wasted on their homes?
> Very few environmentalists say all harvesting should stop on National
> Forests, most say it could be done better.
But the ones calling for zero-cut are the loudest.

> > Wouldn't it be nice if educated foresters, not environmentalists, could
> > manage our forests?  Forest management has come a long way since the
> > clear-cutting of the early 1900s.
> Ya know, there is no reason why this distinction should be made between
> foresters and environmentalists. It's foolish and backward thinking.
> We're all environmentalists. A friend of mine in the USFS once used the
> word "environmentalist" as if describing some loathsome creature- some
> despicable communist. Foresters should give up this primitive
> perspective. No wonder foresters have such a bad reputation as
> Neanderthals among environmentalists. Foresters will get more respect in
> the society at large if they BECOME "environmental foresters". Or to use
> the motto of Microsoft- "embrace and extend". Seize their thunder by
> listenting to what they have to say, then LEAD.

Exactly!  We're all environmentalists.	We care about our surroundings,
we just don't carry it to the extremes.

> "The ONLY forester's web page in the otherwise sophisticated state of
> Massachusetts".

I'll have to check it out.

Here is what some of the extremists are saying:

Published Monday, September 15, 1997
Forest Reform Rally calls for zero cut in national forests
Dean Rebuffoni / Star Tribune

BURNTSIDE LAKE, MINN. -- For a tree-hugger, few places are better to
indulge one's yen than here, amid the vast sweep of the Superior
National Forest and at the edge of the biggest U.S. wilderness east of
the Rockies.

And so, about 180 tree-huggers ("self-proclaimed and proud of it," one
of them said) came to a YMCA camp on Burntside Lake near Ely last week
for the 11th annual Forest Reform Rally. They came from throughout the
nation, and planned -- the U.S. Forest Service might say "schemed" --
how to change the way the agency tends the public's trees.

After four days of speeches and debate, the attendees proclaimed: "ZERO
CUT!" -- if not unanimously, then certainly with a loud, clear majority
voice. In short, they will crusade to ban commercial logging in U.S.
national forests, just as it is banned in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area
Wilderness (BWCA), only a stroll from where they met.

No small task, that. The 155 national forests, including the Superior
and Chippewa forests in northern Minnesota, collectively cover 191
million acres.

The forests will supply almost 4 billion board feet of wood this year to
the timber industry, meaning paper, lumber, other wood products and

That's one set of federal statistics. Another set, widely cited by
speakers at the Burntside rally, includes these numbers:

The national forests contain only 17 percent of U.S. timberlands, they
account for only 4 percent of U.S. timber production and, within three
years, recreation in those forests is expected to pump $100 billion into
the national economy.

By comparison, the Forest Service's timber sales are expected to
generate $3.5 billion. And the forest activists stressed that the sales
program is heavily subsidized by taxpayers, costing more to administer
than it earns.

"Most people think our national forests, like our national parks, are
protected from logging," said David Orr, an activist from California.
"We need to educate people. Public support for zero cut is there; we
need to stir it up."

Orr is backing proposed federal legislation to end logging in the
national forests. Other activists touted bills that would greatly
restrict, although not ban, logging.

The zero-cut crusade

Zero cut is not a new idea. By a 2:1 ratio, Sierra Club members voted
for such a ban last year, and some activists have advocated it for
years, arguing that the national forests are not needed to sustain a
healthy timber industry.

After all, the activists stress, 83 percent of the nation's timberlands
are owned by the industry, nonindustrial landowners and state and local
governments. The most productive timberlands are industry-owned,
especially intensively managed tracts in southern states.

Still, the heavy support for a zero-cut crusade was not totally expected
by rally attendees. That includes veteran activist Bill Willers, a
recently retired zoology professor at the University of

"I had expected fights," he said. "But when Ned Fritz got up and shouted
'ZERO CUT!,' that sealed it. After all, he's the grand old man."

Indeed. Edward (Ned) Fritz, a Texas lawyer and longtime
environmentalist, said he launched the first of these national rallies
"back in '81. And I'm now 81."

Willers, Fritz and Ray Fenner, a St. Paul environmentalist who organized
the latest rally, are not among the more moderate environmentalists
calling for forest reforms.

Willers and Fenner, for example, are leaders of the Superior Wilderness
Action Network, which has strongly differed with more traditional
environmental groups such as the National Audubon Society on how to
reform the Forest Service and protect timber on public land.

Also, there's little expectation that a zero-cut bill, or even a call
for tougher logging restrictions, will get far in the pro-business,
Republican-controlled Congress. Nor is the Clinton administration, which
has frustrated environmentalists with its shifting positions on forest
issues, apt to endorse such a sweeping measure.

"We're not going to get zero cut in this Congress," said Jim Jontz, a
former Democratic congressman from Indiana who now heads a
save-the-trees campaign in Washington, D.C. While in Congress he fought
for tough forest-protection laws.

"All of these bills are intended to build support for forest reform," he
said at the rally. "But while we wouldn't win a vote today to end
logging in the national forests, we've seen a growing national consensus
to do that."

He stressed that in many forests, including the Superior, the Forest
Service is significantly reducing -- or promises to -- the volume of
timber it will sell to loggers. Jontz attributes that to pressure from a
public increasingly aware of the need to preserve biological diversity,
including rare old trees, in the forests.

And this:

Ending Timber Sales on Our National Forests
by David Orr
Chair, Sierra Club No Commercial Logging Task Force

This fall, a historic bill will be introduced in Congress by Rep. Cynthia
McKinney (D-GA) that will put a stop to the wasteful, destructive
national forest logging program.  This legislation, to be known as the
National Forest Protection & Restoration Act (NFPRA), will end the
century-long plunder of our national heritage on more than 250 million
acres of federal lands.  The Sierra Club is poised to lead this campaign
and change the political debate over forest management in this country,

Ms. McKinney's bill targets the fundamental cause of the continuing
assault on our forested ecosystems, by removing the profit-making
incentive that drives the US Forest Service to cut down trees wherever
they may stand. NFPRA prohibits the sale of timber or other wood products
from public lands, and redirects the massive subsidies to worker
retraining and ecological rehabilitation programs.  The act addresses the
"jobs" question by providing employment opportunities to displaced
workers in the necessary effort of restoring damaged watersheds, removing
landslide-causing logging roads, and encouraging reestablishment of
native fisheries and wildlife.

This concise yet comprehensive measure is our best hope for reforming the
corrupt and compulsively law-breaking federal land management agencies.

A Report to Congress will soon be issued by Sierra Club and Earth Island
Institute that will expose the astounding subsidies paid to timber
companies by US taxpayers.  For the first time, the enormity of the
corporate welfare handouts to the logging industry will be revealed:

* in 1996 alone, $791 million was appropriated by Congress to finance
logging on public lands; * exactly $0 (zero dollars) were returned to the
US Treasury; * one-half billion dollars in revenue from sold timber were
spent on more logging and logging-related expenses; * only 3.9% of the
total US timber supply comes from federal public lands. The report will
be published with generous financial assistance from the Angeles Chapter.
 The Club's "No Commercial Logging" Task Force and Forest Reform Campaign
Steering Committee are the lead entities at the national level.  Groups
and Chapters are encouraged to designate "Zero Cut" contacts to
coordinate campaign efforts at the local and regional levels.

An essential element of this campaign is outreach to other environmental
groups as well as to nontraditional constituencies.  Republicans for
Environmental Protection and Christians for Environmental Stewardship,
for example, recently announced support for Zero Cut.  We are actively
seeking endorsements from all sectors of society.

In recent months an informal network of grassroots and national
environmental groups has formed to support this effort.  Known as "Zero
Cut: The Campaign to End Logging on Public Lands," the organizations have
published a newsletter called Zero Cut Times, and an ad in the national
edition of the New York Times.	T-shirts will soon proclaim "Free Smokey
- Only You Can End Logging on Public Lands."  These shirts will be
available to Sierra Club members. -- Foresters, loggers and all timber
related industries need to get involved in the forest reform.  The U.S.
Forest Service is asking for input...let's get some sound input to them!

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