Lawsuit filed to stop logging and road-building in Bozeman’s Watershed and East Boulder Creek

According to Cottonwood Environmental Law Center, all of the trees in this picture that are not painted orange will be cut down as part of the Bozeman Watershed logging project. Photo by Cottonwood Environmental Law Center.


A copy of the complaint can be found here.  Meanwhile, a copy of the press release from the plaintiffs is printed below and the Bozeman Daily Chronicle’s article can be found here.

Weekend Update: An attorney with the Cottonwood Environmental Law Center – who happens to live directly next to the Bozeman Watershed logging project area – provided this very enlightening comment over the weekend, which deserves to be highlighted here:

I helped write the administrative appeal for the enviro groups on the first round of this. We won on soils issues. I submitted a FOIA request for the project record on the BMW project back in 2010.

Here is language from the agency’s hydrologist that I found in an internal document:

The BMW implemented assumes that the BMW treated acres are totally within
the wildfire area so the reduced %>natural figures are probably an over estimation of potential sediment reduction since the wildfires would burn areas outside of BMW treatment boundaries and not all areas within BMW treatment areas would be subjected to wildfire.

Bottom line is that the BMW project, if fully implemented, could result in a modest reduction in sediment yields from a moderate to large size wildfire in either watershed. Since the sediment standard is 30% over natural for each drainage the resulting sediment yields would still be well over standard and pose a challenge to the Bozeman Municipal Water Treatment Plant.

Mark T. Story
Hydrologist
Gallatin National Forest
PO 130 Bozeman, Mt
59771
406-587-6735
mtstory@fs.fed.us

This project is particularly troubling for me because it is nearly adjacent to my home, which is in Cottonwood Canyon, the drainage west of Hyalite. The agency is seeking to log in Cottowood. How is sediment going to be reduced by logging in a different drainage that is six miles away from a reservoir? I bowhunt for deer and elk in the Cottonwood side of the project area. This project will destroy my hunting grounds.

I took photos of the project area, approximately six miles away from the drainage in the Cottonwood side. The photos are on our website: http://cottonwoodlaw.org/work.html

Finally, The Wilderness Society submitted comments against this project years ago. They had a former UM soil scientist working for them that heavily criticized the project. They just aren’t talking about it now because it would be politically unpopular and they are worried about funding.

Bozeman, MT –The Alliance for the Wild Rockies and Native Ecosystems Council, filed a lawsuit on Tuesday in Federal District Court against two proposed logging and road-building projects.  The Bozeman Municipal Watershed (BMW) timber sale is a 10-year logging project which authorizes more than 3,000 acres of logging, including 200 acres within the Gallatin Fringe Inventoried Roadless Area, 1,575 acres of prescribed burning, and 7.1 to 8.2 miles of new road construction.  The East Boulder Timber sale would authorize 650 acres of logging and 2.1 miles of new road construction.

“The last thing you want to do in a healthy watershed is bulldoze in 7 miles of new logging roads,” said Michael Garrity, Executive Director of the Alliance for the Wild Rockies.  “This is the fifth time the Forest Service has tried to push the Bozeman Watershed timber sale which has been successfully challenged four times since the 90s, including our successful administrative appeal last April.  Simply stated, the agency’s proposal breaks a number of laws and this time around is no different.”

The groups also say the two timber sales would log lynx critical habitat, core grizzly bear habitat, and destroy habitat for other old growth dependent species.  “The two timber sales do not comply with the best available scientific threshold to maintain open road densities of one mile or less per square mile of habitat in grizzly bear habitat,” Garrity said.  “Moreover, the logging and road building will also dump sediment into creeks that contain native westslope cutthroat trout, Montana’s State Fish, which is already listed as a ‘Species of Special Concern’ due to habitat destruction and rapidly declining populations.”

“The Forest Service is determined to force bulldozers, logging trucks and helicopters into the Sourdough Creek, Hyalite Creek and South Cottonwood Creek drainages,” said Steve Kelly.  “We are equally determined to protect the outstanding wildlife habitat, water quality and recreational opportunities these federal public lands provide to Bozeman residents and visitors who rightfully expect to encounter nature in a peaceful and quiet forest landscape.”

“Bozeman Creek and Hyalite Creek are already listed as ‘impaired,’ meaning they’re not in compliance with state water quality standards or the provisions of the federal Clean Water Act,” Kelly explained.  “Yet, despite an already degraded aquatic environment, this project will increase sediment loads in the streams both during and after logging.  Sediment sources from past logging projects should be cleaned up first to protect both native westslope cutthroat trout and Bozeman’s drinking water supply from harmful sediment pollution.”

“The supreme irony of this project is that while Montana’s fish and wildlife agency is spending tons of money struggling to recover the population of this native fish and keep it from being listed as an Endangered Species, the federal government is promoting the primary cause of its decline — more logging and sedimentation in its remaining range,” concluded Kelly.

Sara Jane Johnson, PhD., is the Director of the Native Ecosystems Council and a former Gallatin National Forest wildlife biologist.  Johnson contends the Forest Service is converting its emphasis for both areas to fuels management, which violates the agency’s own Forest Plan.

“The Forest Service loves fuels management because it promotes logging – and now, apparently nothing else matters,”  Johnson said, noting that the federal agency is ignoring the adverse impacts the timber sales will have on water quality, fish, wildlife, and recreation.  “The Bozeman watershed timber sale is scheduled to last 10 years. What that means is that the people of Bozeman are going to have to deal with logging trucks, road building and helicopters in their favorite back yard recreation area for the next decade.”

Johnson also says that the increase in road density will adversely affect grizzly bears and lynx, which violates the Endangered Species Act.  “Under the Gallatin National Forest Service’s lynx conservation strategy, 55,000 acres of lynx critical habitat can be logged before they claim there is any impact to lynx, “ Johnson continued. “This is an insane, irrational extinction strategy, not a recovery strategy. The government is supposed to work to protect lynx critical habitat, not destroy it.”

“If we want to recover the grizzly bear and lynx and remove them from the Endangered Species list, they need secure habitat on public land,” Johnson explained.  “Otherwise they will be forced onto private land where they often end up dead.”

“The Forest Service is also ignoring all road density standards for grizzly bears” Johnson concluded.  “The last place the agency should build more roads is in critical lynx habitat and occupied grizzly bear habitat – especially when it is also Bozeman’s municipal watershed.”

The East Boulder project is being litigated for many of the same reasons, Garrity explained, “except in addition to more road building, the Forest Service also blatantly ignores its own Forest Plan requirements to preserve big game winter range standards.”

“The Project area contains important winter range for mule deer and moose,” Garrity continued.  “The Forest Plan requires the Forest Service to manage big game winter range to meet the forage and cover needs of deer, elk, moose, and other big game species. Winter range provides important canopy cover that intercepts snow, blocks wind, and reduces snow crusting, making movement for big game less difficult.”

“The elimination of hundreds of acres of winter range in the project area coupled with the disturbance effects of winter logging will negatively affect the already below-average population of mule deer in violation of the Forest Plan, the National Forest Management Act and the National Environmental Policy Act,” Garrity concluded.  “We have been involved in every step of this process, made the agency aware of our concerns and it continues to push the projects forward.  So now, for the good of the fish, wildlife, big game and water quality, we’re forced to take them to court.  It’s not something we prefer to do, but in the end, judicial review is part and parcel of our system of government and we are using it to challenge the government’s actions exactly as it was intended.”

33 thoughts on “Lawsuit filed to stop logging and road-building in Bozeman’s Watershed and East Boulder Creek”

  1. Excelent, everything is going according to plan. The best hope of “reforming” the “bedrock enviro laws” of NEPA and ESA is when Bozeman’s watershed cooks off while under litigation. Me thinks moderate enviros in Montana are thouroughly disgusted with Garrity and his ilk. The lackey judge Molloy just ruled against another timber sale over the new “storm water runoff” fantasy imposed by the ninth circus court of appeals. Of course, no timber sales have adequately analized this new “thing”. Back to the drawing boards fellas.

    It’s not about following the law anymore. Its not even about making law anymore. It’s about “chasing” the law now.

    Thanks for the good news Matt!

    Reply
    • Derek,

      Will you please read Molloy’s decisions and help us better understand how Molloy is abusing his post as a federal judge–with appropriate citations to his decisions. Will you please help us better understand how the seven miles of new roads are justifiable, and whether alternatives were presented that could accomplish FS objectives without seven miles of new road.

      Or are you just venting, flaming, and baiting?

      Reply
  2. Now, if any of the dedicated brave eco warriors in Colorado would have litigated the “massive clearcuts” around the liberal enclaves of Breckenridge and Aspen, we could have another good story. Unfortunately, it is obvious they have been bought off by the ski industry.

    I have no doubt the CBD and the WEG will bungle the 4FRI in ARizona. I also think I’ll donate some money to the efforts to halt thinning in Lake Tahoe.

    Reply
  3. “Fire Prevention” and “restoration” are the now the top commandments of the USFS as dictated by Congress in the last administration. “Fear of Fire” is the motto that should be posted over the doorway of each ranger station. Even tho’ the rangers and foresters and fire specialists working there know that restoration is just a ploy, a ploy to get some logs (any logs, regardless of size or quality) out to the local mills, they are forced to play the game. Adequate funding for proper forest management (that includes, of course, sound thinning and commercial logging) is no longer deemed important to our Congressional leaders, so now the managers must try to work around this barrier under the guise of restoration/fire prevention.

    One of the first project presentations by the local district (to a now defunct coaltion) talked about everything but the logs or volume of timber that might result from their proposed “restoration” effort. I was forced to ask several times “…what is your district goal for timber volume output this year, and how much volume will come from this project” before the USFS speaker responded with a straight answer, as though it was a secret or something not to be mentioned in mixed company. Fire and WUI…those were (and are) the key words associated with each and every “restoration” effort . What games we are playing!

    There is little or no justification for building ANY new roads in ANY municipal watershed. The threat of water quality degradation from these new roads and skidding and soil disturbance is inevitable from any type of logging; it is measurable and significant. The threat of some future conflagration is not measurable and in many instances will be less injurious to water quality, and very likely of a shorter duration.

    Remember, USFS is for “Forest Service”, not “Fire Service”.

    Reply
    • Hey Scott, the state of Montana DNRC “Bear Canyon” timber sale is the perfect “apples to apples” comparison with the USFS “Bozeman wtershed project”. I’ve covered it here before, so I won’t now, but what a story that highlights the below cost timber sale garbage in garbage out.

      I do disagree with you about “getting a couple more bucks.” The story that doesn’t get told is the Alliance for Wild Rockies was seeing it’s funding dry up in the last few years, from revenues of $255,000 in 2006 to $83,000 in 2009 (that barely covered Garritys salary of $66,000/year-but I don’t bemoan a man making a living). But then came along the aging rock stars Carol King and James Taylor (I know no real man who ever bought a James Taylor album), who presented a smiling Garrity an oversized novelty check for $326,000 in June of 2010.Thence AWR revenues for 2010 were $381,000. In a cheap shot of propoganda, the AWR listed the $326,000 under “membership dues” in their 2010 IRS form 990. So I don’t think the AWR needs to worry about money when you have a couple aging rock stars who wish to asuage their eco guilt at having a carbon footprint larger than the city of Ekalaka Montana as a sugar daddy.

      Upon scanning the newspapers, I couldn’t find the above “news story” anywhere. Thats when it dawned on me Mathew’s post was a “press release.” Perhaps that should be pointed out.
      Power to the people!(or I should say, one rich rock star)

      Reply
      • Derek, You continue to me amaze with your unique ability to focus on just about anything here…except for the merits of the lawsuit and the actual proposed timber sales at hand. The complaint is linked in the post, so if you want to play judge and jury here, that’s your opportunity. Thanks.

        Reply
        • Mathew, I’ve read the EIS’s for both timber sales starting 6 years ago when scoping began. I visited both timber sales also.I plan on visiting them both again this summer for a future story I want to write called the “tale of two timber sales”: State vs. USFS timber sales, the myth of below cost timber sales? Then 200,000 people can read about it. Work in progress.

          Reply
          • I’ll reply to my own reply. I just want to add: that If the SAF had any cajone’s, they’d be doing a similar study about the descrepancy between state and federal timber sale costs. But then, such studies don’t happen when you’re afraid to offend those your trying to appease.

            Reply
            • Derek,

              At the risk of sounding like a ROF (Registered Old Fogy), I think that the topic of state vs. federal forest management was popular in the mid 90’s; I seem to remember some studies from that time. but a quick google search only yielded this one.
              http://publius.oxfordjournals.org/content/27/1/15.abstract?sid=1fb458da-fc26-408c-bafb-e6b75417987d

              Here’s more on the author, sounds like he continues to do interesting work http://pro.osumc.edu/profiles/koontz.31/

              Maybe someone else remembers more state/federal studies?

              Reply
              • Thanks Sharon, I’ll check it out tonight. the Property environmental research center (PERC) in Montana did some good stuff. They kind of turned me on to it. I’ll see if I can find it, it may have been from the late 90’s also-but more recent work comparing the USFS to Tribal forestry has been done. It’s a crime that the cost to do the NEPA is considered “sunk”(great word) so doesn’t get reported. However they do contract some out(recently the Helena NF), and you can get the price for that. From what I’ve been able to gleen, the costs for “timber sale administration” betweeen the entities is pretty close. The SEnate should demand the GAO investigate it.

                Reply
            • If the SAF had any cajone’s, they’d be doing a similar study about the descrepancy between state and federal timber sale costs.

              And what would the SAF say? If I were writing the “study,” after detailing the cost difference, I’d then detail the “mission” differences, including the legislative mandates that differentiate timber sale differences between federal and state lands. And I’d do a bit on what differentiates state “Land Trusts” from federal lands managed under the public trust doctrine. And so on.

              There is nothing to be gained from simply whining about “below cost sales,” whether you are a citizen or a special interest group. The issues are always much more complex. That said, I was, long ago, a big fan of Tom Barlow’s “A Giveaway in the National Forests,” beginning to daylight the mess that the Congress and the Forest Service had created in Alaska. But as I detail in a little missive I wrote in 1998, there is much more to the story: http://www.fs.fed.us/eco/eco-watch/econthoughts.html

              Reply
              • And in the next breath you will condemn “below cost timber sales”. Or perhaps you will condemn the radical enviros when they preach below cost timber sales-as Garrity does in every press release. DAve, have you ever condemned radical enviros when they use the “below cost timber sale speel?

                It’s enough the public knows the difference. They can draw their own conclusions. And who could be opposed to that kind of “transperancy.”

                Issues aren’t that complex.Only those who wish to cloud the real issue focus on the peripheral issues.

                Reply
                • Derek asks,

                  Dave, have you ever condemned radical enviros when they use the “below cost timber sale speel?

                  Why would I condemn them? All I’ve ever done was to try to get the Forest Service and the US Government in general to be honest with the American people as to economic policy/practice. That would be a good start. But pretty much I’ve failed in that quest, and I’m not alone. If ever we could get our own government to be a bit more honest, then we might better be able to call various special interest groups to account. BTW: If you would have read the little thing I hyperlinked above and again here: http://www.fs.fed.us/eco/eco-watch/econthoughts.html , you would see that I do sometimes take on environmental groups:

                  I am not convinced from at least a political and public policy perspective (and maybe not from a legal perspective) that the Forest Service ought to lightly dismiss the Forest Guardians and friends appeals. I say this even though I do not recommend naively following the advice from Forest Guardians and friends in said appeals.

                  You talk “transparency,” Derek, yet the federal government continues to obfuscate, earlier w/r/t economics and now w/r/t ecology in its various policies, in particular my favorite mess, the NFMA Planning Rules dating back to 1979.

                  Reply
    • Scott,

      I am an enviro attorney in Bozeman that frequently litigates against the Forest Service. I live in a yurt outside of Bozeman next to the BMW project area without running water and electricity. I have been there year round for over three years. I live there so that I can keep the lights on in my office. The truth is that I can’t really afford to keep my law firm open and live in a house.

      One day I’d like to write a story about coming back to a negative 28 degree place after having worked a 14 hour day. I’ve woken up with snot frozen to my sleeping bag and feet on the verge of frost bite. This is a long way of saying not all enviros are out for money.

      You want to know why they the greens aren’t chasing the state sale? Because the Forest Service failed to re-initiate consultation with the Fish and Wildlife Service when critical habitat was designated. All logging on federal land in lynx critical habitat is being guided by the Northern Rockies Lynx Management Direction, which is a programmatic document. The agency never determined whether this programmatic guidance document will “adversely modify” critical habitat. This lawsuit is a jumping off point to protect millions of acres of designated critical habitat on federal land. It has nothing to do with money.

      Reply
      • When a wildfire burns into Cottonwood Canyon or Bozemans municipal watershed,can I presume that John and Mathew will demand the USFS cease any fire suppresion efforts in order to restore wildfire to the ecosystem? Here’s your chance to demonstrate the courage of your committment by going on record with such a demand.I am curious: if you don’t want to log it, do you want the USFS to still put out any fires in the watershed? Or do you want wildfires allowed to burn? Whether you think so or not, all that matters is the USFS thinks that thinning reduces fire severity and thus greatly enhances firefighter safety. Without thinning, they’re not going to put anyone in front of a fire up there.

        Reply
        • Derek,

          My understanding is that the BMW logging project is not being proposed to “greatly enhance[] firefighter safety.” The project is being proposed because allegedly if there were a torrential rain after a huge burn there would be so much sediment put into the reservoir that the filters would clog at the water plant. I believe this position is untenable in light of the the agency’s own admission that logging would only result in “modest” sediment reduction and that even if they logged there would still be problems at the water plant.

          I always object to the agency putting firefighters’ lives at risk. It does not follow, however, that we must therefore log. That argument falls flat when the efficacy of the project itself is in question.

          I respectfully disagree with you.

          Reply
          • John, you didn’t answer my question. I’m not trying to trap you. Do you think wildfires should be allowed to burn in the Bozeman watershed? I’ll clarify it further-how about do you think “natural ignition” wildfires should be allowed to burn naturally in the Bozeman watershed-or do you think the USFS should put them out?

            If the answer is yes, then I think you should write a guest editorial to the Bozeman Chronicle saying that “while you are opposed to logging in the Bozeman municipal watershed because of concerns about sediment, you think that wildfires should be allowed to burn in the watershed to restore the ecosystem.”
            I don’t care about the lawsuit anymore, I want to know your personal beliefs.

            Reply
            • Derek,

              Do you agree that the agency’s reasoning for this project is flawed? In other words, do you believe the project is unneeded in light of the hydrologist’s comments that the water plant would face problems even if they logged and there were a fire? If so, do you believe the litigation is warranted?

              Let’s assume the agency’s reasoning is flawed and the project is unneeded. Let’s say they had never proposed the project. If that were the case then I’d like to know what the agency’s fire policy is for the area and the reasoning for that policy.

              I haven’t looked at that policy and I am not willing to shoot from the hip without knowing my own potential blind spots. Perhaps that’s something we can all explore together.

              Reply
  4. Derek :Hey Scott, the state of Montana DNRC “Bear Canyon” timber sale is the perfect “apples to apples” comparison with the USFS “Bozeman wtershed project”. I’ve covered it here before, so I won’t now, but what a story that highlights the below cost timber sale garbage in garbage out.
    I do disagree with you about “getting a couple more bucks.” The story that doesn’t get told is the Alliance for Wild Rockies was seeing it’s funding dry up in the last few years, from revenues of $255,000 in 2006 to $83,000 in 2009 (that barely covered Garritys salary of $66,000/year-but I don’t bemoan a man making a living). But then came along the aging rock stars Carol King and James Taylor (I know no real man who ever bought a James Taylor album), who presented a smiling Garrity an oversized novelty check for $326,000 in June of 2010.Thence AWR revenues for 2010 were $381,000. In a cheap shot of propoganda, the AWR listed the $326,000 under “membership dues” in their 2010 IRS form 990. So I don’t think the AWR needs to worry about money when you have a couple aging rock stars who wish to asuage their eco guilt at having a carbon footprint larger than the city of Ekalaka Montana as a sugar daddy.
    Upon scanning the newspapers, I couldn’t find the above “news story” anywhere. Thats when it dawned on me Mathew’s post was a “press release.” Perhaps that should be pointed out.Power to the people!(or I should say, one rich rock star)

    Nice post Derek, Thanks. Was pondering much of this same info on my drive home today. Very interesting.

    Reply
  5. I don’t know how they do it in Bozeman but, when I worked on the Bitterroot, the lynx habitat was actually “Potential Lynx Habitat”, because they don’t survey much for these animals. I have to think that some other species are dealt with in the same way. On the Bitterroot, they used an arbitrary elevational line on the map to “preserve” vast dead forests. Of course, we haven’t seen any follow-up on whether such “protections” have actually benefited the cat. When does it cease to be “Potential Lynx Habitat”?? When ALL the trees are dead? Chances are, such lands will never lose that label.

    Reply
  6. I don’t want to keep beating this horse to death, but I did look again at the “sediment yield estimate”, on page ch3-40 of the Bozeman municipal watershed EIS. Here’s a couple points. In the Bozeman creek watershed, natural sediment is 354 tons/year and existing road sediment(from a creekside road thats been closed for a decade) is 27 tons/year. For alternative 2, the sediment yield for logging would be 10 tons/year. That would be 2.7% over the “natural sediment delivery rate.” 10 tons is ONE dump truck load. Not a belly dump, but one little dump truck. The AWR wants to stop everything for one dump truck load/year, for five years, when Mother Nature dumps in 35 truck loads.

    Now, let’s look at the “sediment yield” for a wildfire. A 4000 acre wildfire, without the project implementation, would double the sediment yield(that’s 100% vs, 3% for logging) over natural,or add 350 tons of sediment/year. So 350 tons/year is OK, but 10 tons/year is bad? Implementation would reduce sediment yield on that 4000 acre fire to 50% of natural, or 50 tons/year. So for an investment of 10 tons/year you save 50 tons/year.

    John makes a good point that the project won’t be 100% effective at stopping sediment delivery to the treatment plant, for the reason they don’t propose to log every acre in the watershed. No, the project won’t save bozeman if 15,000 acres burns-that just tells me the project isn’t big enough. It also tells me once again, that the only difference between wildfire and logging is wildfire has a hell of a lot more enviro impact, and once again,if nature can recover from a wildfire, it can surely recover from logging.

    Reply
    • I don’t want to beat a dead horse either, but the internal document says that there is going to be trouble at the water plant even if they do log. Maybe the city of Bozeman should look into new or better filters…

      Reply
  7. Well John, frankly, all of the past logging (i.e. clearcutting) in the watershed is probably whats going to save Bozeman from catastrophe. As you’ll see from one of my past postings on this blog, regenerated clearcuts don’t burn. Here’s the link:

    http://ncfp.wordpress.com/2010/10/23/impacts-of-fire-disturbance-on-anthropogenically-induced-vegetation-mosaics/

    Some of my best pictures came from the “Derby fire”, five miles southwest of Bozeman’s municipal watershed. The fire, which was being pushed by a southwest wind, was stopped on the east side by a line of old Plum Creek clearcuts. You can see for yourself if you drive up Big Bear creek on FDR # 980. Disprove me, or more importantly, disprove it to yourself.

    The ridge between Bozeman creek and Hyalite creek is one big clearcut, from the good ol “checkerboard railroad sections Plum Creek Timber” days. The next time you drive up there, notice it. I do believe about 30% of the watershed (at least project area) was logged. Strange how all that logging didn’t shut down Bozeman’s water system then. If the “green islands” of surviving old clearcuts don’t stop the fire, they will certainly alleviate it. The green islands will filter sediment from upslope burn areas before it reaches the creeks.

    Whats ironic, is the area that the USFS want to log now, was never logged because it was “around” the water intakes. They didn’t log it before in the name of water quality-and now it’s the biggest threat to water quality. As Larry has noted before, on several fires I’ve seen the “stream management zones” burned off while the old clearcuts were unburned on either side.

    Reply
  8. Derek,

    Old clearcuts are not going to save Bozeman. As I’ve pointed out numerous times, the agency’s own hydrologist has said that even if logging occurs in the project area, the water plant is going to experience difficulties. That fact is independent of the old clearcuts. The project is simply not warranted.

    I don’t know anything about water filters, but it seems like Bozeman should look into new/better ones. And maybe we shouldn’t be putting all of our eggs into one basket.

    Reply
  9. And yet the City of Bozeman thinks it’s warrented. The City’s water department thinks its warranted.EVery “moderate enviro” group thinks it’s warranted. The Bozeman Chronicle editorial board thinks it’s warrented. Every local, state, and federal politician thinks its warrented. But thankyou, for pointing out that they are all lackeys of the big timber establishement and this is just a give-a-way to capitalist pigs. Thankyou for saving us from ourselves. You wouldn’t get 10% of the vote John.That’s not what I call a democracy. Never has so few, litigated so much, to impose their will on so many. I’m lovin it. I just wish you would go to Colorado and Arizona and start litigating those timber sales and bring those straying enviros back to the fold. You do know they are about to clearcut 5000 acres around Breckenridge Colorado. Anyway, have a good one John.

    Reply
  10. Derek,

    Does the City of Bozeman know that the water plant will have problems even with the project? Or are they still under the impression that the area has to be logged to save the City’s drinking water?

    Who are the “moderate enviro” groups? As I pointed out earlier, the Wilderness Society wrote plenty of comments against the project and took the agency to task on their fire modeling. What groups are you referring to?

    When has every local, state, and federal politician weighed in on the project? Please link to all of their comments, and what they have said about the project after learning that there would still be issues at the water plant after logging.

    I sent the Bozeman Daily Chronicle the same internal email that I posted here after they printed their opinion. They didn’t know it existed and wrote the opinion without the benefit of knowing the whole story.

    This isn’t about “saving us from ourselves.” It is about making educated decisions. The agency is keeping everyone in the dark.

    When this thread started, the pro-logging camp said it was all about money. As I pointed out, I’m not doing it for money. Then it was radical enviros putting wildlife over the City’s water needs. Again that issue has been rebutted. Then it was the fact that the old clearcuts would save Bozeman’s water. That has been rebutted.

    What’s next? I don’t care what they do in Colorado or Arizona. My heart is in Montana.

    Reply

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