Western Watersheds v. USFS (D. Idaho)

This case involves the decision by the Targhee National Forest to issue new Annual Operating Instructions to the Agricultural Research Service in 2017 to allow the U. S. Sheep Experiment station to continue grazing sheep on two allotments. This case was summarized in today’s Litigation Weekly, but since it found two violations of the forest …

Continue reading ‘Western Watersheds v. USFS (D. Idaho)’ »

Plan revision on the Rio Grande

They are a little ahead of the Helena-Lewis & Clark discussed on Nov. 29.  They are taking comments on their draft plan and EIS.  I haven’t read either, but this article provides an overview.  Here’s the big picture: “The purpose and need for revising the forest plan is the changed economic, social, and ecological conditions …

Continue reading ‘Plan revision on the Rio Grande’ »

What people want from the Helena-Lewis and Clark National Forest plan

There’s a summary of the scoping comments available on the Forest’s planning website.  “The number of comments for or against forest uses or management were not tabulated as ‘votes,’” but here’s the top 3: “The most common topic was the concept of recommended wilderness or designated wilderness. Roughly 46% of the comments offered input related to …

Continue reading ‘What people want from the Helena-Lewis and Clark National Forest plan’ »

Who gets to be “in the room”

Discussion about the unfair access of litigants to decision-makers ignores the privileged position of local governments and economic interests during the planning process.  That is illustrated by this account of a meeting between the Forest Service, ESA regulatory agencies and northeast Oregon ranchers and county commissioners concerning revision of the Blue Mountains forest plans and …

Continue reading ‘Who gets to be “in the room”’ »

WA murrelet strategy should “meet only minimum federal standards for protections”

At least that’s what the Washington state politicians are urging their Department of Natural Resources to adopt for its lands. The DNR is currently considering five different proposals to protect the bird species. A final decision is expected within the next few weeks. Walsh has come out in favor of “alternative B” which he says …

Continue reading ‘WA murrelet strategy should “meet only minimum federal standards for protections”’ »

Case on forest plan wilderness recommendations

Ten Lakes Snowmobile Club v. U. S. Forest Service (Mentioned by Brian Hawthorne here, with links to an article and the opinion.) This case was about the decision in the 2015 revised Kootenai and Idaho Panhandle National Forest plans to recommend (to Congress) areas for wilderness and to manage them to protect their wilderness values.  The …

Continue reading ‘Case on forest plan wilderness recommendations’ »

Another September case

Wild Wilderness v. Allen seems to have not shown up on the Forest Service litigation reports, but here is a newspaper version.  On Sept. 8, the Ninth Circuit found that the decision to build the Kapka Sno-Park, a parking lot for snowmobile users on the Deschutes National Forest, was consistent with the forest plan and …

Continue reading ‘Another September case’ »

Sage grouse planning do-over

This article discusses the last Trump/Zinke twist in the effort to prevent sage listing of the greater sage grouse under ESA.  While sage grouse habitat on federal lands is mostly under BLM jurisdiction, the Forest Service is also a big player, and 20 forest plans were amended in 2015 to include conservation measures that were …

Continue reading ‘Sage grouse planning do-over’ »

Litigation bi-weekly October 6 & 13

Litigation Weekly Oct 6 New cases WildlandsDefense_v_Seesholtz  –  Challenge to the North and South Pioneer Salvage and Reforestation Projects on the Boise NF for its analysis of bull trout, including ESA consultation, and for compliance with forest plan standards for soils and salvage harvesting.  (D. Idaho) EarthIslandInstitute_v_Elliott  –  Challenge to the Bull Run Roadside Hazard …

Continue reading ‘Litigation bi-weekly October 6 & 13’ »

What is Beyond the “Fog of War”?

There are scary and uncertain times ahead for our forests. There is just too much “Fog of War” going on for the public to sort out and fact-check for themselves. Even the ‘fact-checkers’ should be suspect, until proven reliable and bias-free. The rise of ‘fake news’ has blurred multiple lines, and many people, even in …

Continue reading ‘What is Beyond the “Fog of War”?’ »