Pin It
Favorite

Local Briefs 

Stealth logging?





Priest Lake, Idaho -- An environmental watchdog group is alleging that illegal logging is taking place in the mountains surrounding one of North Idaho's recreational gems. The Kootenai Environmental Alliance says 11 trees were illegally harvested and taken from Forest Service land that is currently under a logging injunction.


"I went out there myself, and it looked like a new skid trail and freshly cut trees on either side of it," says Barry Rosenberg, a KEA board member. A coalition including the KEA and the Lands Council has sought the overturning of a salvage logging law that allows timber to be taken if it is dead, dying or likely to be killed by infestation. The problem, says Rosenberg, is that applying such a loose standard has led to cutting healthy trees. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has placed an injunction on logging in the area until a motion for summary judgment is decided on by a lower court. In the meantime, loggers have been allowed to take trees already on the ground, which has led to some frustration and abuses, including this latest episode.


"We're severely understaffed," says Rosenberg of his group's ability to keep a watchful eye on the forests in question. "This should be the agency's job."


So far, the Priest Lake Rangers' office has said the loggers in question were taking down trees that were hung up as they fell to the ground. The rangers won't name the loggers.


Rosenberg says the Douglas-fir Beetle Project, as the salvage operation is called, did a lot of damage before his group could win the injunction, including a 164-acre clear-cut that is visible from Priest Lake. The forests around Priest Lake are among the most diverse in the entire region, supporting a wide variety of trees.


"This sale has removed much of the genetic diversity out there," says Rosenberg, "because it has removed some of the biggest Doug fir. They've even taken hemlock and cedar -- some really big ones."


The KEA's attempt to reverse the Beetle Project claims that it allows opportunistic logging of healthy trees. And while some argue that the project will help with fire suppression, Rosenberg says the damage from erosion is worse.


"All the drainages around there are considered by the Forest Service as already 'distressed,' " he says. "And it will only get worse as this continues."





Manito construction





Spokane -- Starting Tuesday, one of Spokane's favorite parks will get a little harder to reach. Changes funded by the 1999 Park Improvement Bond are set to be implemented, and the construction will close parts of the park between September 4 and November 15.


The Grand Boulevard entrance will be closed, along with the parking area by the picnic shelter and play structure. The shelter and the play structure will also be closed. For a short time in early October, the Shoshone Avenue entrance, the Bernard entrance, the Rose Garden Loop Drive and the parking near the Park Bench will be closed as well.


The good news is that once completed, the park will feature significant improvements. The restrooms near the Duck Pond will be updated to meet Americans with Disabilities Act standards, and traffic will be improved with a new parking area, a bike path and sidewalks.
  • Pin It

Latest in Comment

  • This Isn't Normal
  • This Isn't Normal

    America has gone down this road before, and it's a dead end
    • Dec 1, 2016
  • Incendiary Words
  • Incendiary Words

    Trail Mix: Trump's gifts to civics teachers everywhere
    • Dec 1, 2016
  • Fake-News Nightmare
  • Fake-News Nightmare

    The social media dream of the 2000s is fading, but we can reset the system by sticking up for the truth
    • Dec 1, 2016
  • More »

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Today | Mon | Tue | Wed | Thu | Fri | Sat
Downtown Family Skate Day

Downtown Family Skate Day @ Riverfront Park

Sun., Dec. 4, 11 a.m.-4:45 p.m.

All of today's events | Staff Picks

More by n/a

  • Iron Upgrade
  • Iron Upgrade

    The new one is smart and funny and action-packed, and it’s bigger and better and sleeker. And Downey does it again, this time ramping up Stark’s arrogant wisecracking, telling anyone who’ll listen (mostly women) that, via the creation of his powerful Iron Man suit, he’s brought years of uninterrupted peace to the world.
    • May 12, 2010
  • Get Out the Vote
  • Get Out the Vote

    With all the uncertainty in the world these days, hot wings and cold beer are two things we can get behind
    • Nov 9, 2009
  • Seeing Gay
  • Seeing Gay

    A festival showing GLBT from all angles
    • Nov 9, 2009
  • More »

Most Commented On

  • Unfinished Business

    Isaiah Wall wants to get his life on track. But first, he's gotta buy drugs for the police
    • Nov 17, 2016
  • This Isn't Normal

    America has gone down this road before, and it's a dead end
    • Dec 1, 2016
  • More »

Top Tags in
News & Comment

Briefs


green zone


marijuana


trail mix


election 2016


Readers also liked…

  • To Kill the Black Snake
  • To Kill the Black Snake

    Historic all-tribes protest at Standing Rock is meant to stop the destruction of the earth for all
    • Sep 8, 2016
  • A Persistent Life
  • A Persistent Life

    Scott Reed won more cases than he lost in life, and the beauty of the Coeur d'Alene area has been the beneficiary
    • May 27, 2015

© 2016 Inlander
Website powered by Foundation