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forest defense | save the biscuit

Biscuit/Siskiyou Wild Rivers Campaign Enters Crucial Phase

As many who love Oregon's wild forests know, the Bush Administration has proposed the largest timber sale in modern history in the midst of the most diverse National Forest in the country. The Biscuit logging project and the citizen effort to protect the Siskiyou Wild Rivers are now entering a crucial phase.
Illinois River with Incense Cedar
Illinois River with Incense Cedar
The Final Environmental Impact Statement was released by the Siskiyou National Forest on June 1st. The Record of Decision is expected to be signed on July 6th. The Forest Service has granted itself "emergency exemptions" for the first 11 Biscuit timber sales totaling over 3000 acres (80 million board-feet.) That means that the normal 90 day opportunity for citizen appeals has been dropped. The only legal recourse for the public now is to sue in federal court. The first five of the 11 fast track sales will go on auction in Medford on July 14th. Given recent experience, we could see logging attempts on the Biscuit only days later. In any case we might have to wait more than one month for a federal ruling stopping logging.

Numerous activities to protect the Biscuit are planned and on-going. Large rallies will be held in Portland and Medford on July 6. An action will undoubtedly take place in conjunction with the July 14th auction. Regular Biscuit organizing meetings are taking place in Ashland and Selma. An extensive campaign to get letters to the editors of newspapers and phone calls to Senators is also underway.

In addition, autonomous affinity groups are traveling to the woods and planning Biscuit actions based on more detailed sale information.

Please take action now. The forest needs help as simple as a letter or phone call, as extensive as a new organizer joining the campaign. The momentum continues to move in our direction. In many ways the Bush Administration is backing down and delaying the project because of citizen pressure. Our legal case is strong and the politics of a presidential election summer are in our favor. Still thousands of acres of primary forest hang in the balance of citizen action and corporate greed. Please take action now.