GOP group opposes forest plan

Donald L Ferrt wolfbat359 at
Wed Jan 7 19:51:50 EST 2004

GOP group opposes forest plan

The new year is getting off to a bad start as the Bush administration
once again gives away for destruction some of our most priceless
public lands. On Christmas Eve, as usual releasing the announcement
when it will get the least attention, the administration pre-empted
judicial review of the Roadless Area Conservation Rule and released
part of Alaska's Tongass National Forest, a magnificent towering
ancient moss-covered temperate rain forest, for clear-cut logging by
the timber industry. More than a quarter million Americans wrote,
urging protection in the drawing of the Roadless Rule for the Tongass,
yet the timber industry will be allowed to reduce hundreds of
thousands of acres to stumps and eroded land.

The Forest Service (i.e., American taxpayers) loses up to $35 million
a year underwriting road-building and clear-cutting in the Tongass for
the logging companies. Undersecretary of Agriculture Mark Rey, a
former timber lobbyist, is working on dismantling the Roadless Rule,
which was initiated to keep some of our national forests free of
logging and road-building, which has such a deleterious effect on the
forest ecosystem, watersheds, fish and wildlife. Even worse, U.S. Sen.
Ted Stevens, R-Alaska, slipped a rider into an appropriations bill
making it nearly impossible for any citizen to challenge road-building
or logging in the Tongass.

REP America, Republicans for Environmental Protection, is begging
Americans to protest to the White House, their congressmen and the
Department of Agriculture. Not only is the biological heart of this
rare form of forest at risk but also, shamefully, decisions about our
resources are being managed by the very people who once worked for the
industry that will benefit enormously from their forest actions. This
is a disgrace.

Norma Hamilton

Punta Gorda 

Last modified: January 02. 2004 12:00AM

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