Currently viewing the category: "Montana"

Across the West,  livestock grazing is one of the most destructive land uses. Some 250 million acres of public lands are grazed by domestic livestock including those administered by the Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management, as well as national wildlife refuges and even some national park units.

This use is not benign. […]

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A new report by Friends of the Clearwater documents that 18,000 Idaho roadless acres and 22,000 roadless acres in Montana were logged while presumably protected under the Roadless Rule. While commercial logging is illegal, there is a loophole that permits logging for “forest health.”

However, where the Forest Service sees a “health” problem, ecologists such […]

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The threat from House Bill 132 

By Jim Bailey

A proposed apparently minor addition to the legal definition of “wild bison” in Montana could eliminate all possibilities for restoring public, wild bison to the state. This seemingly innocent change exists in House Bill 132 which, as of this writing, has passed the Montana House and […]

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Recently the Helena National Forest released a scoping letter on a proposal to create 39 miles of  mountain biking (aka thrill biker) trails in the Strawberry Butte area of the northern Elkhorn Wildlife Management Area. https://www.fs.usda.gov/nfs/11558/www/nepa/110309_FSPLT3_4486872.pdf

In its scoping letter, the FS notes that “Since 2001, the Forest has observed an increase in recreational use […]

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Voodoo forest science

On December 5, 2018 By

A hundred years ago or so there was a pseudo-science that focused on measurements of the human skull known as phrenology. Phrenology was based on the flawed assumption that skull size was indicative of intelligence. These studies demonstrated and confirmed that men had larger skulls and thus were smarter than women. The only problem was […]

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In recent years it has become fashionable for conservationists to substitute and promote other land classification in place of wilderness designation. Wilderness is “passé” so we are told, even though it is the “gold standard” for land protection.

In a recent white paper, The Wilderness Society outlined some of these alternatives such as National Recreation […]

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The spectacularly glaciated Gallatin Range stretches south from Bozeman into Yellowstone National Park. The 250,000-acre roadless area is the largest unprotected wildlands left in the northern Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.

WILDLIFE VALUES

The Buffalohorn and Porcupine drainages (BHP) that drain into the Gallatin River near Big Sky, Montana are a miniature ecological equivalent of the Lamar […]

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Billings, Montana has seen a steady increase in population and economic diversity. In all likelihood, Billings will continue to grow. At a modest average growth of 1.5 percent a year, Billing’s population will increase by more than 40,000 people in 20 years.

At the same time, Billing’s economy has greatly diversified. […]

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Federal Judge Dana Christensen threw out the Fish and Wildlife Service’s (FWS) decision to delist the Yellowstone grizzly bear and returned the bear to Endangered Species Act protection. The decision effectively precluded (for now) the hunting of the bear in Idaho and Wyoming.

The judge agreed with plaintiffs that the FWS […]

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The recent guest commentary by Joe Prinkki and Joe Skinner, members of the Custer-Gallatin Working Group, supporting the logging of Bridger Canyon was full of misleading and scientifically inaccurate common myths about forest health and wildfire.

The editorial asserts that the forest is “unhealthy” and at risk of death from wildfires and bark beetles. That […]

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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