LANDSCOPE: Timber Industry's Salmon Plan Spawning Confusion

wafcdc at wafcdc at
Thu Sep 2 07:45:00 EST 1999

From: "wafcdc at" <wafcdc at>
Subject: LANDSCOPE: Timber Industry's Salmon Plan Spawning Confusion

LANDSCOPE, News and Views from American Lands - September 2, 1999

Timber Industry's Salmon Plan Spawning Confusion

Foresters and biologists who tested Washington State's new industry-designed
legislation for protecting salmon streams "found policies too complicated to
work and protection for some species based on guesswork instead of science,"
says the Seattle Times.   When an attempt was made to apply the legislation
on the ground, "two different foresters came up with two different buffer
zones, with 60 feet of disputed territory in between," said the Times.
"I've been a forester for 16 years and I'm not comfortable with this," said
Eric Wisch of the state Department of Natural Resources (DNR).  "It's going
to be almost impossible to explain and very difficult to implement on the just isn't going to work....and once trees are cut you can't
stand them back up, " said John Edwards, former manager of forest practices
for the DNR.

. . . The Washington law was passed to provide for a statewide exemption of
timber industry lands from "take" requirements under the federal ESA.  This
proposed Habitat Conservation Plan is the most recent in a flood of HCPs
that locking in devastating industrial forestry practices on million acres
of private forest lands in the West.  Instead of rubber-stamping Endangered
Species Act and Clean Water Act exemptions called for in the flawed
Washington State plan, the Clinton Administration should develop strong
rules for protecting imperiled salmon runs. 

Boise Cascade to Log Contested Spotted Owl Habitat:  A federal judge is
likely to lift an  injunction prohibiting Boise Cascade from logging the
company's last 50 acres of old growth in the northern Oregon Coast Range.
The site had been protected due to the presence of northern spotted owls,
but now that the owls have abandoned the site, the big trees are likely to
fall.  The situation highlights the importance of protecting ancient forests
for all their habitat values, not just spotted owls.  The site has never
been surveyed for marbled murrelets, for example.  Boise reportedly
maintained ownership of the site when they sold the surrounding property
because it wished to sue the government for a regulatory "takings."

New HCP Checklist Now Available:  A "bigger, faster, uglier, tougher"
version of American Lands' checklist for Habitat Conservation Plans (HCPs)
is now available to interested activists.  The checklist is designed to help
forest activists and citizens understand proposed HCPs, analyze their
effects, submit legally-effective and biologically-relevant comment letters
on draft HCPs and their NEPA documents, and consider other courses of action
to fix or stop harmful HCPs.  Contact American Lands' Forest Biodiversity
Program at mailto:wafcfbp at or 503-978-0511.  Please tell us your
name, organization, location, and what HCPs you're dealing with, if any.

Also Available:  Daniel Hall, Forest Biodiversity Program Director, recently
published an article in the University of Michigan's Endangered Species
Update on using incentives and land acquisition to restore habitats and
supplement the ESA.  These approaches can be constructive alternatives to
HCPs.  See vol 16, no 3, of the 1999 Update. 

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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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