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Environmental, Campaign & Website News > Logging Continues in Redwoods and Canada

Logging Continues in Redwoods and Canada

Date : 17th January 2003, Source : Newsgroup



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GREAT BEAR RAINFOREST

Raincoast Conservation Society, David Suzuki Foundation, and Forest Watch of British Columbia

NEWS RELEASE
Clearcut logging continues in Canada s rainforests
January 14, 2003
For immediate release

VANCOUVER - Destructive clearcut logging continues in the Great Bear Rainforest despite historic agreements reached almost two years ago to implement more environmentally responsible logging and to protect critical areas of Canada s rainforests, says a new report by three leading environmental organizations.

This comprehensive report shows that in 72 per cent of the logging completed or planned between April 4, 2001 - when the British Columbia government and First Nations signed a landmark agreement and Jan. 15, 2002 nearly all of the trees were removed from each logging site.

The report also found that logging continues to the banks of small fish-bearing streams, which are important habitat for Pacific salmon.

The eyes of the world were on British Columbia on April 4, 2001 and people believed this agreement meant that these unique and important rainforests would be conserved for future generations, said David Suzuki who spoke at the historic signing ceremony.

Unfortunately, today we must announce that it is largely business as usual in these forests in terms of how and how much of them are cut down.

Findings from the Clearcutting Canada s Rainforests report include:

In the vast majority of logging sites over 80 per cent of the trees were removed;
Only four per cent of fish-bearing streams in logging sites had protective stream-side buffers;
In the majority of sites not enough trees were left behind to sustain species or habitat that depend on old-growth forests.


Researchers analysed 227 logging plans for individual logging sites on BC s central and north coast and Haida Gwaii (Queen Charlotte Islands). They also conducted aerial surveys of the forests and ground visits to logging sites.

In the vast majority of logging sites we found that nearly all the trees had been removed, said Aran O Carroll, executive director of Forest Watch of British Columbia.

One of the easiest and quickest changes that logging companies could make to demonstrate a commitment to improved forestry practices would be to leave trees standing to create buffer zones on small streams critical to fish, he said. Our results show that they have haven't, and in fact only four per cent of the logging plans we analysed called for mandatory no-logging buffers on small fish streams inside the logging sites."

The seven First Nations from BC s central and north coast and Haida Gwaii that are part of the Turning Point initiative believe that environmentally responsible logging is needed to conserve what remains of these old-growth forests, which have sustained their people and cultures for millennia, said Art Sterritt, co-chair of Turning Point, who also spoke at the April 4, 2001 ceremony.

We are concerned when we see that logging practices have not really changed since we reached this agreement, said Mr. Sterritt. Clearcut logging is not acceptable in these forests and we are working with government, the timber companies and environmental groups to ensure that environmentally responsible practices are implemented.

In addition to the First Nations agreement, the province, environmental groups and timber companies agreed that 20 valleys of extreme ecological and cultural value would be protected and that many other watersheds would not be logged until completion of a land-use plan for BC s central coast. This process is ongoing and the protected status must stand until it is concluded, the groups say.

The report calls for ecosystem-based management to be practiced in Canada s rainforests, which means ending clearcut logging and wider buffer zones for streams. Forestry regulations in British Columbia do not require any protection of small fish streams. On U.S. federal lands in the Pacific Northwest a minimum 91-metre no-logging buffer zone is required on each side of a fish-bearing stream.

"Once again the public has been lied to regarding forest practices in British Columbia, and the repercussions in the international market place will further damage the province s reputation" said Ian McAllister of Raincoast Conservation Society.

"We also fear that given the current rate of logging conservation opportunities are quickly running out for the Great Bear Rainforest."

Besides being the traditional territories of First Nations for thousands of years, Canada s rainforests are home to amazing species like the white Kermode or spirit bear, the largest grizzly bears in Canada, genetically unique wolves, the endangered northern goshawk and five species of salmon. Cedar, hemlock, Sitka spruce and Douglas fir tower in these forests, which support myriad species of mosses, fungi, lichens and insects.

Canada s rainforests are a global ecological treasure which was recognized in April 2001 with these agreements, said Dr. Suzuki. We must now live up to the spirit and intent of the agreements so that future generations will also know this natural wonder.


Read the report at http://www.canadianrainforests.org. For more information and to arrange interviews, please contact Jean Kavanagh at 604-732-4228. B-roll and still photographs are available.


************************************************ CALIFORNIA REDWOODS

ALERT! TREE-SITTERS UNDER ATTACK

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Alert from Bay Area Coalition for Headwaters
January 16, 2003
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Today, Thursday Jan. 16, Pacific Lumber and Humboldt law enforcement began moving in on tree-sits on PL land in Humboldt county. It is unclear at this writing how far they will go to try to remove tree-sits from their property, but people have felt recently that PL might soon try to remove the tree sits.

On Thursday, PL's "climber Eric" dismantled a tree-sit in PL's Demonstration Forest near the Avenue of the Giants, taking down sitter Sequoia, and showed up in Freshwater, where there have been many tree-sits, not dipping below about a dozen the last couple months. Freshwater is also the area where Remedy has been in an old growth redwood for 10 months, along with Wren who has been in a nearby tree for 8 months. The Freshwater watershed has been under assault by PL logging, where the Headwaters Deal Habitat Conservation Plan allows 500 acres to be clear cut annually.

Remedy told us by cell phone that law enforcement and PL climbers, climbing gear in tow, arrived at a tree-sit on Kneeland Rd., about 5 miles from her tree, surveyed the scene, but did not attempt to climb the tree and extract the sitter.

PL is carrying out aggressive logging in key areas, including occupied habitat of the endangered marbled murrelet. Their logging has also been causing slides and flooding, with tremendous impact on local residents and on salmon and steelhead fisheries.

There have been on-going tree-sits in the Demonstration Forest, Gypsy Mountain, where David Gypsy Chain was killed in 1998 by an angry logger, in a stand of old growth in Grizzly Creek, in the Mattole watershed, and in Freshwater.

PL is coming under fire with the release of a scientific report making the correlation between their accelerated logging and devastating water quality problems such as the flooding and mud slides befalling neighbors downstream from PL logging sites, degradation of drinking water supplies and loss of agricultural crops. The recommendation to scaling back the cut coming in that scientific report and the fact that the case challenging the Sustained Yield Plan of the Headwaters Deal may have caused PL to accelerate their cutting in the last of their available old growth, which happens to be above already impaired water courses and in endangered species habitat.

Those facts have made the tree sits all the more urgent.

Support is needed! Call the two numbers below to find out how you can help.

Areas of tree-sits are as follows :


*Demonstration Forest, near the Pepperwood exit off 101, in the Avenue of the Giants

*Freshwater watershed, which is east of the north end of Eureka

*Gypsy Mountain and Grizzly Creek areas are out highway 36, east off 101 near Fortuna and south of Eureka Check with BACH office and North Coast Earth First! before going up to offer support.

Northcoast EF! 707-825-6598
BACH office: 510-548-3113





Document last updated on Tuesday 30 August 2011

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