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[pct-l] Logging Roads News

FYI, folks....I just came across this news item today at
Kevin Corcoran

Saturday January 10 2:24 PM EST 

Government Proposes Pause on New Logging Roads

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The federal government has proposed a pause in building
new logging
roads in some of the most pristine areas of national forest, the New York
Times reported Saturday. 

It said the Clinton Administration planned a moratorium on building new
logging roads in most
national forests while experts drafted new rules on road building. It could
last for a year, the
newspaper said. 

The Forest Service would throw the idea out for public comment before any
suspension took effect. 

"The Vice President is the one who has been pushing for this," the Times
quoted one Administration
official as saying. "He feels strongly that after a century of federal
forest management, it is time to
give stronger weight to forest values like clean water, recreation and

Michael Francis, logging specialist at the Wilderness Society, welcomed the
proposal. "This is a
significant move by the Forest Service, an agency that has been Darth Vader
to the forest. It is
poised to make one of the most significant directional changes in its
100-year history," the Times
quoted him as saying. 

It said the Forest Service would appoint a panel of scientists during the
ban and would draft new
rules on road building. Forest Service officials could not immediately be
reached for comment. 

The Times quoted Idaho Senator Larry Craig, a Republican who chairs the
Energy and Natural
Resources Subcommittee of Forests and Public Land Management, as saying
there would be
opposition in Congress to the idea. 

"We cannot agree -- and we believe there would be widespread Congressional
opposition -- to a
flat moratorium on roadless area entry, a redefinition of roadless areas,
the designation of any new
land-use categories or any other unilateral Administration initiative," he
and five other Republican
senators from the West said in a letter to Agriculture Secretary Dan Glickman. 

The White House had no comment on the newspaper report. 


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