LANDSCOPE: Too Many Miles of Road Threaten National Forests

wafcdc at wafcdc at
Mon Jun 7 16:03:13 EST 1999

From: "wafcdc at" <wafcdc at>
Subject: LANDSCOPE: Too Many Miles of Road Threaten National Forests

LANDSCOPE, News and Views from American Lands - June 7, 1999

Too Many Miles of Road Threaten National Forests

The Gifford Pinchot National Forest has excessive roads that are not being
properly maintained, reports the Associated Press.  "Our road system was
more than necessary even in the big years of timber harvest," said Forest
Service geologist Jim Chamberlin, "We could have done more cable and skyline
logging instead of putting in a road for every 1,000 feet of slope that was
the standard."  The Gifford Pinchot now plans to reduce the road system from
the current 2,942 miles to 2,048 miles, a one-third reduction that some
agency officials think needs to go further.  "The Gifford Pinchot no longer
can afford to maintain such a vast road system," says Bob Yoder a Forest
Service engineer."  Only 18% of the National Forest road system is currently
being maintained each year.  Most of the roads to be closed are spurs or
routes with nearby alternatives.  "The roads being proposed for closure are
not going to be critical for us or most other recreation users," said Rod
Jones of the Northwest Motorcycle Association.

. . . The lack of road maintenance is causing serious environmental
degradation from erosion and catastrophic landslides.  An aggressive road
closing program is essential to restore degraded watersheds and reintegrate
fragmented habitats.  For more information about road decommissioning,
please contact the Wildlands Center for Preventing Roads,
mailto:wildlandscpr at or 406/543-9551.

Wilderness Training in San Luis Obispo, CA:  On Sunday June 13, 1999 the
California Wilderness Coalition and the Sierra Club will host a slideshow,
workshop, and field training regarding Wildlands 2000, the next statewide
wilderness protection bill for California at the San Luis Obispo Recreation
Center.  Workshop topics include important background information on
wilderness protection, potential new wilderness areas around the state, and
how to get involved in the Wildlands 2000 campaign.  After the workshop, the
California Wilderness Coalition staff will lead a wilderness survey training
in the Los Padres National Forest.  For more information contact Letty
French at 805/239-7338, mailto:ccfrench at or Ryan Henson at
530/335-3183, mailto:ryan at

Forest Certification Standards:  The Forest Stewardship Council is in the
process of developing regional forest management standards.  Independent
evaluation and "certification" of private forest management can encourage
landowners to adopt improved forest practices, restore forest ecosystems,
and help implement landscape-level biodiversity restoration plans.
Involvement by local environmental groups is integral to the standards
development process, ensuring that certification rewards exemplary forest
management and restoration versus standard industry practices.  The first
draft of the FSC-US Rocky Mountain Certification Standards is publically
available to the public at  Comments and
suggestions are encouraged and will be accepted through July 15, 1999.  For
a hardcopy of the draft or additional information contact Steve Thompson at
(406) 862-3795 or mailto:sthomp at

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Steve Holmer
Campaign Coordinator

American Lands 
726 7th Street, SE
Washington, D.C. 20003
202/547-9213 fax
wafcdc at

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