Litigation weekly January 19, 2018

Litigation Weekly Jan 19 AWR v Farnsworth The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals refused to enjoin the Tower and Grizzly fire salvage and restoration projects on the Idaho Panhandle National Forest.  (9th Cir.) CitizensHealthyCommunity v BLM (Update)  The Forest Service was added to a case against the BLM involving approval of a plan for construction …

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Litigation Weekly – January 12, 2018

Litigation Weekly Jan 12 RockyMtnWild v FS A Freedom of Information Act case.  Documents created by contractors in conjunction with their preparation of an EIS for the Wolf Creek Land Exchange on the Rio Grande National Forest, but never provided to the Forest Service, were not “agency records” subject to release under FOIA.  (10th Cir.) …

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Study blames pot farms for poisoning spotted owls

“Researchers from the University of California, Davis, and the California Academy of Sciences tested 10 northern spotted owls found dead in the region. Seven of the owls tested positive for rat poison, used by pot farmers to keep rodents away from their irrigation systems and crops.” “California officials argue that legalization will allow them to …

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Chetco Bar Fire salvage – agreement?

“The U.S. Forest Service is planning on salvage logging later this year in about 8 percent of its acres burned in last year’s 191,197-acre Chetco Bar fire in Curry County, a move timber advocates welcomed and one conservation group called “something we can live with.”” George Sexton, conservation director for the Ashland-based Klamath-Siskiyou Wildlands Center, …

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Loggers lose attempt to remove coho salmon from California’s endangered list

On remand from the California Supreme Court, the Central Coast Forest Association and Big Creek Lumber Company lost again in the state appeals court.  They have been arguing that coho salmon did not occur naturally in rivers south of San Francisco, and that hatchery coho were harming native steelhead.  The state Fish and Game Commission …

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Litigation weekly – December 22 and 29, 2017

Litigation Weekly Dec 22 Duhring v USA The Allegheny National Forest was not liable for trespass when it delayed the extraction of oil and gas by the subsurface rights owner.  (W.D. Pa.) WEA v Zinke The 10th Circuit held that the BLM could not adequately represent the interest of environmental groups when defending an energy …

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Prescribed fire in wilderness

The Ten Cent Community Wildfire Protection Plan led to a fuel treatment proposal on the Umatilla and Wallowa-Whitman National Forests that included prescribed burning in the North Fork John Day Wilderness Area.  Objections included alleged violations of the Wilderness Act.  The objection decision included the following description of the process and requirements to conduct prescribed …

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Forest Service on the bandwagon to unprotect sage grouse

Time is running out to comment on the notice that initiated “the scoping process to solicit public comments on greater sage-grouse land management issues that could warrant land management plan amendments” on 15 national forests and grasslands.  (Comments are due Friday.)  The majority of sage grouse habitat is found on BLM lands (I think the …

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Forest Service to revise NEPA procedures

The Forest Service is proposing to revise its NEPA procedures (including its regulations at 36 CFR part 220, Forest Service Manual 1950, and Forest Service Handbook 1909.15) with the goal of increasing efficiency of environmental analysis. The Forest Service’s NEPA procedures were last reviewed in 2008 when the Agency moved a subset of its NEPA procedures …

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Shoshone forest plan lawsuit leads to negotiated solution on pack goats

The North American Packgoat Association’s lawsuit reversed a forest plan decision to restrict the use of goats for packing (because of risk of disease spreading to bighorn sheep) based on a procedural violation.  They then got together with the National Wild Sheep Foundation and other stakeholders to work out a new plan, which the Shoshone …

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