Currently viewing the category: "Public Lands"

Currently, there is a bill in the Massachusetts legislature that would ban logging on all of the state lands. The premise of the legislation is that logging contributes significantly to CO2 emissions. The legislation sponsors argue that the best use of Massachusetts state-owned property is to maintain intact forests for carbon storage.

If […]

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In June the BLM released a draft EIS Programmatic EIS for Fuel Breaks in the Great Basin. The proposal would authorize the creation of 11,000 miles of fuel breaks primarily in sagebrush ecosystems across parts of Nevada, California, Utah, Idaho, Washington, and Oregon. https://eplanning.blm.gov/epl-front-office/projects/nepa/71149/175534/213852/FuelBreaksDraftPEIS_Bulletin.pdf

This plan is a government boondoggle that will cost […]

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I recently got a survey from a mountain biking advocate asking me if I agreed with the premise that bikes belong in designated wilderness.

This person justified mountain bike access to wilderness and recommended wilderness areas because they maintain trails and create new trails that are open to hikers and horse riders. And oh, by […]

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Monitoring project shows two weeks of cattle is decimating the understory

FISH LAKE, Utah – Conservationists today released a new report showing that cattle grazing in the world-famous Pando aspen clone and neighboring aspen groves exert more than four times as much grazing pressure over less than two weeks as do mule deer grazing over the […]

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Mountain Biking is a significant threat to our wildlands—both in designated preserves like national parks, wilderness areas, and the like, but also Wilderness Study Areas (WSA) and roadless lands that may potentially be given Congressional protection under the 1964 Wilderness Act.

Wilderness designation is one of the best ways to protect biodiversity, watersheds, wildlife […]

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The recent article on juniper mortality in central Oregon demonstrates how most forestry professors have little ecological understanding of ecosystem processes nor even the latest ecological science. https://www.registerguard.com/news/20190530/fire-suppression-drought-increasing-mortality-among-central-oregon-trees

In the RG article,  an Oregon State University forestry professor suggests a lack of low severity fires is contributing to overly dense juniper stands which […]

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Western Watersheds Project (the organization that I am the Executive Director of), WildEarth Guardians and the Center for Biological Diversity are fighting the reinstatement of grazing on four allotments in eastern Oregon that are permitted to Hammond Ranches. In part, we argue that the Hammonds don’t have a great track record and are thus undeserving […]

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As we ponder the future of public lands in Montana, including what areas deserve protection as Wilderness, it is worthwhile to look back in history to see how past protective measures were viewed.

In 1872 with the establishment of Yellowstone National Park many Montana citizens were outraged. For example, the Helena Gazette opined: “We […]

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Bob Marshall, Aldo Leopold, and Olaus Murie, legendary biologists and founders of The Wilderness Society (TWS), must be crying in their graves.

When Marshall founded the Wilderness Society, he wrote: “We do not want those whose first impulse is to compromise. We want no (fence) straddlers for in […]

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We live in an age of Orwellian Doublespeak. Such doublespeak is exemplified by the euphemistically named “Resilient Federal Forests Act” (RFFA) sponsored by Rep. Westerman. Like previous versions, Westerman asserts RFFA will reduce massive wildfires and smoke, and promote more “resilient” forests.

In the name of fire reduction, RFFA is a Trojan Horse designed to […]

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Quote

‎"At some point we must draw a line across the ground of our home and our being, drive a spear into the land and say to the bulldozers, earthmovers, government and corporations, “thus far and no further.” If we do not, we shall later feel, instead of pride, the regret of Thoreau, that good but overly-bookish man, who wrote, near the end of his life, “If I repent of anything it is likely to be my good behaviour."

~ Edward Abbey