Heritage Forests Campaign Once They're Gone, They're Gone Forever

Salt Lake City, Utah - Environmentalists from across the country joined with local citizens in Salt Lake City today to deliver an additional 500,000 comments to the Forest Service expressing overwhelming public support for the roadless rule.

The additional comments push the total number of public comments on the Roadless Area Conservation Rule to a record-breaking 2 million.

"More than 2 million Americans have personally told the Forest Service to protect our national forests," said Jane Danowitz, Director of the Heritage Forests Campaign. "But the real question is whether Bush will listen to the American people or will he continue catering to the timber industry who want to destroy these lands."

Across the country last week, environmental leaders, public officials, clergy, conservationists, and concerned citizens rallied to show their support for the roadless rule, and submitted their comments to the Forest Service. In Washington on Thursday, Congressional leaders and environmentalists called on the Bush administration to stop ignoring the overwhelming public support for forest protections by implementing the roadless rule.

The roadless rule was finalized in January, after the most extensive public rulemaking in history. But the Bush administration, citing insufficient public input, delayed implementation of the balanced rule, and in July, ordered another 60-day comment period, which ends today.

The Forest Service office in Salt Lake City is responsible for collecting and analyzing each of the comments. The Bush administration will then decide whether to continue rolling back the roadless rule, as advocated by the timber industry.

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Contact: Tony Iallonardo, NET
(202) 887-8855

The Heritage Forests Campaign is an alliance of conservationists, wildlife advocates, clergy, educators, scientists, and other Americans working together to uphold protection of our National Forests. Heritage Forests Campaign's partners include Alaska Rainforest Coalition, American Hiking Society, Earthjustice Legal Defense Fund, National Environmental Trust, National Audubon Society, Natural Resources Defense Council, US PIRG, and The Wilderness Society.

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Heritage Forests Campaign News Release

September 10, 2001

Americans Call on Bush to Listen to Public, Not Industry

Citizens Deliver 500,000 More Comments Favoring Roadless Protections

Pushes Total to Record-Breaking 2 MILLION

Photos of Forests