October 13, 2005

EH - 36 : Forests

Matthew Koehler presents a report on the environmental industry's spin on Forest management. I happened to pick up a copy of the referred to report yesterday, so you can guess what my weekend reading material will be. We must objectively analyze the statements presented and look at whether they are true in context of what we know from living here first hand.

The fact that Oregon BLM land makes the top 10 and the Umpqua National Forest gets special mention is a stinging rebuke to me that as a conservationist; the environmentalists don't feel that i am doing my job here. Not that they given us any latitude to do that job, running to federal judges to lay down management strategy at the drop of a lawsuit. Koehler's spin on the US Forest Service is an explanation, but now identified, we can no longer use it as an excuse. The use of the categorical exemption lawsuit in CA to harass mushroom picking operations during chanterelle season in OR is punishing the public for a political pique by a bureaucrat. That ought not be tolerated!

If the forest service cannot get it together to manage this land for the economic, social and ecological benefits that multi-use implies, then it is time to allow the Umpqua off the grid of the northwest forest plan and let our local experience take over the management of this watershed in a 100 year stewardship contract split proportionally between the citizens of Douglas County and the Cow Creek Indian Tribe! The more voices represented at the table, the merrier. If everybody tries to do something different, then perhaps we will have enough diversity to find something that actually works.

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