Cascadia Summer 2003: Forest Defense Elevates to a New Level
A strategic campaign in defense of the precious forests of Cascadia was kicked-off yesterday with actions across the region. Just as forest destruction on public lands is on the rise, a popular movement to protect those lands is also advancing to a new level. Actions took place throughout Oregon, Washington, Northern California in the United States and in British Columbia, Canada.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 05/30/03
Jim Flynn @ 541.521.2026, email@example.com
Cascadia Summer 2003:
Forest Defense Elevates to a New Level
A strategic campaign in defense of the precious forests of the entire Cascade Mountain Range and adjacent areas, the bioregion known as "Cascadia," was kicked-off yesterday with actions across the region. Just as forest destruction on public lands is on the rise, a popular movement to protect those lands is also advancing to a new level. Actions took place throughout Oregon, Washington, Northern California in the United States and in British Columbia, Canada.
The Cascadia Summer 2003 campaign is an alliance of groups with a wide spectrum of skills and tactics, including the Cascadia Forest Alliance, Cascadia Forest Defenders, Forest Action Network, Blue Mountains Biodiversity Project, Mazama Forest Defense, Northwest Ecosystem Survey Team, Klamath-Salmon Action Network, Cascadia Defense Network, Shuksan Direct Action, and Olympia and Springfield Earth First!.
These groups have a history of successfully defending public forests at places like Warner Creek, Eagle Creek, Watch Mountain, Clayoquot Sound and dozens of smaller sites. This past weekend, at a meetings in southwestern Oregon and in the Walbran Valley in southern British Columbia, these groups and numerous individuals combined resources and efforts in an attempt to completely stop the destruction of the ancient forests of Cascadia. These groups and individuals are now fanning out across the region to begin actions and education designed to challenge corporate control of our forests and to increase the amount and diversity of public participation.
The Cascadia Summer 2003 campaign is happening at a time when the Bush administration is working to decrease public participation and use the fear of forest fire as the excuse to increase commercial logging of public lands through the "Healthy Forest Restoration Act" which the U.S. House or Representatives passed on May 20. The Healthy Forest Restoration Act will increase destructive ancient forest logging while doing little to protect homes and communities from wildfire.
Here is a list of Cascadia Summer 2003 actions that are happening this week:
Wednesday, BMC West, one of the largest retail lumber chains in the U.S., was the subject of protests in 8 cities as activists demanded an end to the company's purchasing policies, which have been linked to endangered forest destruction in the U.S., Chile and British Columbia. BMC West's suppliers include Roseburg Forest Products, Freres Lumber and Weyerhaeuser, logging companies based in Cascadia. BMC West and their business partners profit handsomely from the public loss of biodiversity, clean water and recreation.
Yesterday, logging continued near the treesits set up last week at the Glassups timber sale on the Wild and Scenic Salmon River in the Klamath National Forest. Ancient trees are being felled close to the occupied treesits. Continued resistance to logging of ancient forests in Glassups and the nearby Knob timber sale will continue throughout the Summer.
Today, a forest action training camp begins focused on the Solo timber sale and treesit in the Mt. Hood National Forest near Portland, Oregon. The Solo sale would allow convicted timber thieves Freres Lumber to clearcut 167 acres of ancient forests, including some of the biggest trees and some of the oldest Pacific yew trees near Mt. Hood. The planned logging at Solo threatens not only ancient forests and biodiversity, but water quality for 185,000 Oregonians as well.
In Eastern Oregon, a widespread field checking survey began this week to "ground-truth" National Forest timber sales to look for U.S. Forest Service errors that frequently accompany their proposals for logging. Additionally, citizen-surveys are being completed for endangered species in timber sales ready for logging.
Near Eugene at the Straw Devil timber sale, a newly formed women's group is actively working to protect the forest and to confront sexual oppression in the environmental movement. Two treesits were established at Straw Devil recently where logging is expected to begin in July.
Other activists are traveling to reinforce the other two current public lands treesits in Cascadia: Fall Creek and Winberry in Oregon. The Fall Creek treesit is now in its 6th year of continuous occupation of a forest under immediate threat of destruction.
Numerous other Cascadia Summer campaigns are on-going or in the planning stages. These include the campaign against Roseburg Forest Products timber baron Allyn Ford, president of Umpqua Bank; the upcoming visit by the Republican Leadership Conference to Portland; and the upcoming Ministerial Conference and Expo on Agricultural Science and Technology and World Trade Organization discussions in Sacramento, California, June 22-25.
For more info, interviews or video footage, call the number above or log onto www.cascadiasummer.org throughout the Summer.
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