Since Norman brought up Wisconsin, and I had seen this earlier, thought it would be a good time to post this.
Buried deep in Wisconsin’s northwoods is a story that warrants statewide attention.
In the coming days, the Gannett Wisconsin Media Investigative Team will bring you “Timber Trouble.”
Our three-part series focuses on the growing mistrust between the logging industry and the national forest service.
Gannett Wisconsin Media Investigative Team reporter Nick Penzenstadler and Post-Crescent Media photojournalist William Glasheen traveled north to do the reporting, photo and video work for the “Timber Troubles” project..
The Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest and Laona area, in Forest County, serve as ground zero for our report.
Penzenstadler and Glasheen investigated whether the timber harvests inside northern Wisconsin’s national forest are being mismanaged. As a result of smaller harvests, the number of logging jobs has plummeted. That in turn has triggered a huge decline in student enrollment for Laona schools because of a drop in the Forest County population as people have had to move elsewhere in search of work.
It’s an intensely emotional issue, said Penzenstadler, adding that it’s hard to overstate the frustration of people in the logging and timber industry in northern Wisconsin.
They’re exasperated, disheartened and discouraged.
Their way of life is at stake. Their local school districts, businesses and economy are on the brink of collapse — and it does not have to be this way.
Millions of board feet of wood could be taken out of the Chequamegon-Nicolet while still preserving important portions of the forest.
The author says it merits “statewide attention.” I would think that the situation in the Lake States and the west merits national attention. If someone finds a story, please post in a comment. Required: in national news media, looks at situation nationally.
UPDATE: Looks like the entire series, which includes articles and video, is now available on-line. -mk