Rim Fire Logging in 2014 – Photo Courtesy of Tori Carpenter.
Even while leaders from around the world are attending the Conference on Climate Change in Paris to develop policies which will stall and hopefully reverse the effects of Global Climate Change, Republicans in the U.S. House and Senate are threatening to hold U.S. spending bills (the funding that runs the government) hostage unless Democrats agree to include anti-environmental logging provisions, which will exacerbate climate change, in the Appropriations package.
These anti-environmental riders are focused on increasing logging (“thinning”, and post-fire clearcutting) on public lands and/or eliminating environmental review of intensive logging projects on millions of acres of National Forest and BLM lands across the country. Under these provisions, Federal agencies would be legislatively absolved from looking at, let alone disclosing to the public, the negative impacts to forest ecosystems, biodiversity, watersheds and recreation that their industrial timber extraction would cause. Public input into how our federal lands are managed would essentially evaporate.
In addition, these logging provisions: will not help protect rural communities, because logging does not prevent fire or keep houses from burning down; are contrary to all we have learned over the past 15 years about the importance and ecological benefits of mixed-intensity wildland fire for our forest ecosystems and ignore scientific consensus against such provisions; will exacerbate climate change, by accelerating the removal of carbon-storing trees and shrubs from our public forests through logging – more trees than are killed by fire (including all the fires of 2015) or drought; and will destroy our best chance to hedge against the negative impacts of climate change because the logging will facilitate the degradation and destruction of millions of acres of our remaining forest ecosystems, eliminating key habitats, such as mature/old trees, standing dead trees (“snags”) and downed logs, which are necessary to support the full complement of native biodiversity of plants and animals.
This is simply a shameful and bullying way for Republicans to feed their timber industry supporters and sell out future generations for a quick payday.
We have asked for your help before to defeat stand alone Bills, and we need your help now to defeat these logging riders!
- PLEASE CALL YOUR U.S. SENATORS and REPRESENTATIVES TODAY urge them to oppose attaching any anti-environmental logging provisions (such as increasing logging (e.g., “thinning”, and post-fire clearcutting) in green and burned forests, eliminating environmental review, and/or curtailing oversight of logging activities by citizens and the courts) to any Appropriations Act (i.e. government funding legislation). If your Senator or Representative already supports these harmful actions urge them to change their position and to stop holding the running of the government hostage to their own special interests!
- Find your Senators’ Contact Information HERE.
You can also call the Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121 and they will direct your call.
California Senators: Contact Dianne Feinstein at 202-224-3841 and Barbara Boxer at 202-224-3553.
- Find your US House of Representative’s Contact Information HERE.You can also call the Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121 and they will direct your call.
- If you want talking points, or are just interested in the issue of fire in our forests, please check out our Staff Articles, In The News and Television and Radio Coverage.Thanks for standing up for our public lands!
John Muir Project of Earth Island Institute