The Blues and the Graze
The U.S. government is calling for more timber harvesting and less grazing on 64 million acres in the eastern part of the Northwest as part of the largest federal land-use plan ever proposed. The plan, released yesterday by the Interior Columbia Basin Ecosystem Management Project, is a joint effort by the U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management, covering land in eastern Washington and Oregon, Idaho, and western Montana. If approved after a 30-day period, the plan would boost timber cuts by about 22 percent with a plan of aggressive thinning. It would also take steps to protect fish habitat, as well as land for threatened species like sage grouse and grizzlies.