Heritage Forests Campaign Week In Review
June 21, 2001
For More Information: Le Evans, NET, 202-887-1342 or 202-487-7465 (cell)
1.6 MILLION & COUNTING: Bush "June" Deadline Looms for Next Comment Period
- The Bush administration pledged to uphold the roadless rule, but decided to propose "amendments in early June" that could severely weaken the rule. With only a week left to make the deadline, it appears that the Bush administration is still intent on proposing amendments that could severely weaken the national forest conservation policy by allowing roadless protections to be decided on a forest-by-forest basis- a throwback to the 1970's.
(US Dept. of Agriculture Press Release)
- In setting the June deadline, Secretary of Agriculture Ann Veneman outlined the five principles by which the Bush administration would change, but those principles are already addressed in the rule itself. To see a comparison between Veneman's principles and the roadless rule, click here.
POLLING: Bush Continues to Slide on Energy and Environment
Only 39% of the public approve of President Bush's handling of the environment and even fewer- only 33%- approve of Bush's handling of energy issues, according to a new poll by the New York Times and CBS News. Strong majorities also believe that the oil industry has too much influence on the Bush administration (63%), and that Bush and Cheney favor the oil industry (58%). As the June forests deadline looms, Bush appears intent on protecting corporate special interests and ignoring a public that strongly favors protecting the environment- including our national forests.
(Richard Berke and Janet Elder, The New York Times, June 21, 2001)
FOREST SERVICE NEWS: Peek-A-Boo Politics- It's Not Just About Roadless Anymore
- Two weeks ago, in a directive issued to Forest Service personnel, Chief Dale Bosworth said that he will temporarily make final decisions on logging and road construction in roadless areas, but he instructed local forest supervisors to consider roadless areas in the forest planning process. Once these plans are completed, local officials will have final authority over activities in roadless areas- including logging.
(Katherine Pfleger, Associated Press, June 8, 2001)
- And just last week, the Forest Service circulated draft forest planning regulations that would eliminate or significantly reduce most of the environmental safeguards included in the forest planning process. Particularly, the forest planning regulations would eliminate the priority for ecological sustainability, and give equal weight to social and economic sustainability. Such a change could give powerful logging companies even more influence over forest planning decisions.
(Bill McAllister, Denver Post, June 15, 2001)
- The Bush administration has said that it intends to protect roadless areas through the local forest planning process, but wants to reduce or eliminate most of the environmental safeguards included in forest planning Peek-A-Boo, I see you!
NOTE: For copies of all stories, please contact Le Evans at 202-887-1342.