While concerns about the economy continue to generate huge media interest, a “Who’s Who” of national reporters turned their attention for an hour to thinking about what the new Obama Administration might mean to America’s public lands and the wildlife that call them home.
Six high school students huddled around a campfire at dusk surrounded by the Clearwater National Forest; their eyes fixed and their ears intently listened to a thrilling fireside story. However, this story was much different than the usual camp tales that force our minds to wander as something scratches the outside of our tents at night.
It’s one of the most difficult environmental concepts to understand, yet the word is starting to get out: some fires are good things. A look at a recent poll conducted by a coalition headed by The Wilderness Society and The Nature Conservancy revealed that the American public better understands that fire, under the right conditions, helps restore forests and protect communities and firefighters alike.
A recent report from The Wilderness Society shows that the Tongass National Forest contributes more than $2 billion to local economies through non-timber uses, such as recreation and tourism, commercial salmon fishing, subsistence and scientific research.
A year ago, a bunch of aerial photos of the Meadow Creek watershed showing that something was not right got into the hands of Brad Brooks from The Wilderness Society and Brad Smith from the Idaho Conservation League.
Regional and national conservation groups including The Wilderness Society, Greater Yellowstone Coalition and The Lands Council denounced a new state policy that went into effect Oct. 16, which removes virtually all protection from more than 400,000 acres of national roadless forest in Idaho.
If a court ruling protects roadless forests can anyone hear it? There’s a bright spot in the legal struggle that started almost a year and a half ago to protect national forests in northern Minnesota. A federal district court recently decided that the Forest Service violated a major national environmental law (National Environmental Policy Act) by failing to evaluate the effects of logging on water quality in the Echo Trail area adjacent to the Boundary Waters Wilderness.