Wyden slams agency for ‘staggering’ reduction in timber program

That’s the title of an Environment & Energy Daily article from today. Here’s a PDF:

Wyden slams agency for ‘staggering’ reduction in timber program

“The budget’s timber harvest goal is 2.38 billion board feet in 2014, down from a goal of 2.8 billion board feet in fiscal 2013 and down also from the 2.64 billion board feet that was actually harvested in 2012. The agency had previously set a goal of harvesting 3 billion board feet by 2014.”

The article notes that the agency’s budget request for fiscal 2014 is $4.9 billion, a figure I think is little changed from the past few years, but is less is real terms, as it does not keep up with inflation.

A companion article stated that Wyden “is concerned about proposals to place federal lands into private management.”


“What is most likely to produce an increase in the harvests in a sustained way?” Wdyen asked. “Is it the collaborative approach, the way they’re doing in John Day [Ore.] … or is it more likely that the harvest will get up in a sustained way by in effect taking federal lands and putting them in private ownership? You know, there’s talk of a reserve or something of that nature. Which of those two approaches, in your view, is most likely to get the harvest up in a sustained way?”

John Day, where the last remaining mill is hanging by a thread.

Not private ownership, but federal lands managed by a trust via a board of directors. The O&C Trust, Conservation, and Jobs Act (discussion draft, Oct. 2012) states that:

 (2) actions on the O&C Trust lands shall be deemed to involve no Federal agency action or Federal discretionary involvement or control and the laws of the State shall apply to the surface estate of the O&C Trust lands in the manner applicable to privately owned timberlands in the State;

Thus, the Oregon Forest Practices Act would be in force. And:

“(b) TRUST PURPOSE.—The purpose of the O&C Trust is to produce annual maximum sustained revenues in perpetuity for O&C Trust counties by managing the timber resources on O&C Trust lands on a sustained-yield basis…”

4 thoughts on “Wyden slams agency for ‘staggering’ reduction in timber program”

  1. Sort of curious to me that the only place where the word “staggering” appears in the article is in the title. This leads me to wonder if Sen Wyden even used the word “staggering.”

    If he did, then I have to wonder if the word “staggering” is appropriate given the definition of the word, coupled with a very, very modest potential reduction in logging.


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