Far Fewer Firs Felled in Federal Forests
Logging on federal lands in the Northwest has dropped by two-thirds this year because of judicial rulings holding up timber sales, and the feds have stopped negotiating for any new sales in Oregon and Washington. Northwest lawmakers complain that it could be a year or more before logging of federal lands returns to expected levels, and the Clinton administration is not disagreeing. Administration officials say they are trying to negotiate a settlement with environmental groups that would remove the injunction against multiple timber sales, and they are trying to rewrite Clinton’s Northwest Forest Plan, which calls for more wildlife surveys than the government has been able to complete. Oregon Sen. Ron Wyden (D) has joined with GOP senators from the Northwest in harshly criticizing the administration for its forest policies.