Interior Bill Threatens the National Forests With Massive Increase

wafcdc at wafcdc at
Fri Sep 29 14:32:55 EST 2000

From: "wafcdc at" <wafcdc at>
Subject: Interior Bill Threatens the National Forests With Massive  Increase in Logging

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 29, 2000
Contact:  Steve Holmer, 202/547-9105, wafcdc at

Interior Bill Threatens the National Forests With Massive Increase in Logging

An apparent agreement has been reached on the Interior Appropriations bill
between Congress and the Clinton Administration that threatens the National
Forests with a significant increase in logging.  The deal includes a $40
million funding increase for timber sales - 20% above the Forest Service
request.  The bill also includes a timber targets rider that urges the
agency to log 3.6 billion board feet next year, double the current level.   

"This bill is an unacceptable threat to our forest heritage," said Jim
Jontz, Executive Director of American Lands.  "The Clinton Administration
should stand up to the special interests, not open the door for a huge
increase in subsidized logging on the National Forests."

The Domenici fuels reduction amendment has been slightly changed but it
still threatens to increase logging.  The amendment provides $1.9 billion in
response to this year's fire season.  Hundreds of millions will be available
for new logging projects to thin the forests.

"The Domenici rider also provides no ecological standards for restoration or
environmental safeguards to prevent these funds from being used for
logging," said Steve Holmer, Campaign Coordinator for American Lands. 

In addition, the stewardship rider allowing the Forest Service to give away
trees to pay for contracted services was also included in the bill.  One
current stewardship contract in Idaho calls for the logging of 173 million
board feet of timber in the name of elk restoration.   "The Forest Service
should not be allowed to treat trees on the National Forests as their own
private piggy bank to pay for anything they desire," said Holmer.  "If
Congress and the Administration want work to be done on the forests, they
should pay for it, not just allow the Forest Service to log and give away
the trees."

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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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