Litigation Against Douglas Complex Salvage Project Reveals Disregard for Rural Communities, Forest Rehabilitation
On August 1, Cascadia Wildlands, Oregon Wild and the Center for Biological Diversity filed a lawsuit in Oregon federal district court to block salvage of timber from the Bureau of Land Management’s Medford District resulting from the 2013 Douglas Complex fire claiming BLM and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service are ignoring the needs of the northern spotted owl. On September 23, Magistrate Judge Thomas Coffin denied the environmental groups’ request for a preliminary injunction, saying they were not likely to win their lawsuit because the agencies had considered the best available information and taken a hard look at the needs of the owl and appropriately balanced the various resource needs on the project area. Today, the environmental groups appealed Judge Coffin’s ruling to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and are again seeking to stop the salvage of dead trees through a motion for injunction pending appeal.
Tom Partin, President of the American Forest Resource Council, issued the following statement regarding the efforts of environmental groups to litigate and halt salvage and reforestation efforts on the site of the 2013 Douglas Complex fires in Southwest Oregon:
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