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Healthy Forests

two opposing views in the healthy forest dispute
TIDEPOOL post today>>  http://www.tidepool.org/original_content.cfm?articleid=77662
Bush's speech today>> http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2003/05/20030520-3.html
More Calls Needed - Call Again! 21.May.2003 06:54

Center for Biological Diversity tschulke@biologicaldiversity.org

Final Vote on McInnis Fire Bill
More Calls Needed - Call Again!
Tell Congress - Vote No on HR 1904

The so-called "Healthy Forests Restoration Act," HR 1904, passed in the Judiciary Committee yesterday along party lines and will likely be voted on by the entire House on Tuesday May 20, 2003. There are many Members of the House that have not heard from their constituents about how to vote on this legislation. Your Representatives must be told that this legislation will be devastating to our forests and to our ability to advocate for clean water, wildlife and wild values on our National Forests and Bureau of Land Management administered lands.

This is an urgent situation. The Timber Industry, biomass industry, the Society of American Foresters, other timber industry front groups and the White House have been on Capitol Hill lobbying hard for this bill. Many Representatives, Republican and Democrat alike have stated that they are "undecided" about how they are going to vote on this legislation.

Please educate your Representative and let them know that voting for HR 1904 will have consequences and is unacceptable. Educate your Representative about the effects this vote will have on the ground in our National Forests.

We need to keep up the pressure.
Please call your Representative, Brian Baird, at (202) 225-3536
Ask for the staff that handles National Forest issues and tell them to vote NO on HR 1904, "Healthy Forests Restoration Act of 2003."
The "Healthy Forests Restoration Act of 2003 (HR 1904) will:
Not Ensure Increased Protection for Communities: HR 1904 does not include any specific measures to protect homes or communities. It is also inconsistent with the Western Governors' Association 10-Year Comprehensive Strategy, which does not call for any changes in existing laws. The only proven method to protect homes and communities is to reduce flammable materials in the immediate vicinity of structures, yet the sham definitions in H.R. 1904 would not require any activities to be near homes. Instead, the bill seeks to further subsidize the timber industry and eliminate obstacles to logging large, fire-resistant trees miles away from the nearest home. The country's top forest scientists, including the Forest Service's own scientists, have found that this kind of logging can actually increase fire risk and make fires larger and more intense.
Cut the Heart out of NEPA. HR 1904 allows the Forest Service to conduct large-scale, environmentally damaging logging projects without considering any alternatives, including the "no action" alternative or their relative environmental impacts.
Remove the Public from the Process. HR 1904 eliminates the statutory right of citizens to appeal Forest Service logging projects.
Interfere with the Independent Judiciary. HR 1904 seeks to restrict a core principle of our democracy -- the right of Americans to seek redress in the court for grievances involving the federal government. The bill limits preliminary injunctive relief to 45 days, and forces any U.S court to render a final decision on the merits of a case within 100 days. Finally, the bill seeks an astounding change in American legal standards by requiring courts to give deference to agency findings regarding the balance of harms in deciding whether to enter a temporary restraining order, preliminary injunction, or a permanent injunction in ANY court challenge where the agency claims the action is necessary to "restore fire-adapted forest or rangelands ecosystems."
Create New Insect Categorical Exclusion. HR 1904 creates a new Categorical Exclusion from the National Environmental Policy Act on all Department of Interior and Forest Service lands by authorizing an unlimited number of projects (up to 1,000 acres each) for all lands that the agencies claim are at risk of infestation by certain insects.
Provide New Logging Subsidies. HR 1904 would authorize $125 million in subsidies to the biomass industry to log our National Forests.

For more information contact:
Todd Schulke
Forest Policy Director
Center for Biological Diversity


good info 21.May.2003 10:50


This site has tons of good info and analysis.

Bush is a timber puppet, and so are all the people he mentioned in that speech of his, including smokey the bear.