massive landslide threatens Headwaters

Scott McPhee hyphae at
Fri Feb 13 15:03:02 EST 1998

Whenever I see the name Darryl Cherney I know something fishy is up.


CamillaH wrote in message <19980213084400.DAA04279 at>...
>On 2/12/98, Kirk Johnson wrote:
>>> Massive Landslide Threatens Headwaters "Deal" Area, Coho Salmon and
>>> Local Residents
>>> For Immediate Release:  Feb. 12, 1998,  Contact: David Walsh or
>>> Darryl Cherney  at Environmentally Sound Promotions  707/923-4949
>>> A massive landslide threatens to eradicate endangered Coho salmon
>>> in the proposed Headwaters "Deal " acquisition area.  The slide was
>>> triggered by a 1995 Elk River Timber/ Red Emerson Timber Harvest Plan
>>> which was litigated by EPIC because of the inherent instability of the
>>> area.  The court ruled in favor of the timber operator and now after
>>> clearcut logging, nearly thirty acres of hillside are sliding into the
>>> South Fork of the Elk River drainage and into the Headwaters "deal"
>>> acquisition area.
>>> Representatives from EPIC were alerted to the slide following a new
>>> 705-acre THP (1-97-520 HUM) which was recently submitted inside the
>>> proposed acquisition boundary.  Department of Water Quality official
>>> Dudek stated that the pre-harvest inspection team evaluating the new THP
>>> was prevented from driving into the plan by a landslide that had taken
>>> the road and completely blocked the river.  Subsequent aerial
>>> reconnaissance has sent a chill through the environmental community and
>>> local residents." What Water Quality has seen of this landslide was only
>>> the tip of the iceberg," said David Walsh of EPIC, the Garberville-based
>>> group which has been working for Headwaters protection for eleven years.
>>> It is estimated that there remains nearly 3 million cubic feet (111,000
>>> cubic yards) of slide material perched above and moving into the river.
>>> "This slide is immense from any perspective and will have irreversible
>>> adverse effects to Coho and Steelhead populations, not to mention local
>>> residents of the Elk River" said David Walsh.
>>> "Emergency action must be taken now to prevent annihilation of the
>>> population in the South Fork Elk and a plan must be implemented to
>>> salmon and steelhead habitat in the watershed," said David Walsh of
>>> There should be a moratorium on timber operations in the Elk River
>>> watershed. Certainly, this latest timber harvest plan must be denied or
>>> withdrawn.  The Elk River is one of the last productive refuges for wild
>>> native salmon in California," he said.
>Now, I would welcome input from foresters because I want this thing somehow
>make some kind of sense.  FMP, foresters know forests. Headwaters Forest
>Complex and the surrounding land is a beautiful forest.   So, how is it
that if
>look at *any* Headwaters issue,  you find insanity on the part of the
>I went to a Board of Forestry meeting back in November about developing an
>emergency plan to address the concerns of the residents for the area in
>anticipation of this El Nino year.  Citizen after citizen, evidence was
>presented of the changes they see in the sediment and stream beds.
>after official, they said a plan to address these contingencies existed and
>new one wasn't necessary.  The Dept. of Fish & Game didn't even bother to
>up  to address the Board.
>Today I read that Gov. Wilson wants the coho salmon listed as endangered in
>but the northernmost rivers of CA.  The southernmost boundary for what
>considers "northernmost" looks to be about 10 miles south of Headwaters.
>Pardon my conspiracy theory, but it screams at me that this is one!
>Part of the Dept of Fish & Game policy on salmon says:
>"IV.   Salmon shall be rescued only when they will be returned to the
>system of origin. Rescue of juvenile salmon shall be limited to
>where fish can be held until habitat conditions improve, or where immediate
>release can be made in understocked areas of their natal stream system."
>So, you dump 3 MILLION CUBIC FEET of earth in a stream, make the salmon go
>elsewhere to survive.  I wonder if Fish & Game is prepared to go out and
>those juvenile salmon?   Or are they off the hook because these salmon
can't go
>back to its stream of origin?  I know these are forestry questions, but
>any of this make any real sense to you?

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