Federal budget cuts could doom a program that spurred consensus

Excerpts:

(Herb) Malany, a retired Boise Cascade forester, and (John) McCarthy, now a Wilderness Society representative, carpooled home from Cascade after spending a day together shelling out federal money to local projects in their roles as members of the Southwest Idaho Resource Advisory Committee.

… The process helped them develop trust and personal relationships that have fostered a collaborative approach toward forest issues they used to fight about. Now, McCarthy and other environmentalists are supporting a biomass plant that Council Superintendent Murray Dalgleish said is critical to the economic future of his Adams County community, surrounded by the Payette National Forest.

…The process helped them develop trust and personal relationships that have fostered a collaborative approach toward forest issues they used to fight about. Now, McCarthy and other environmentalists are supporting a biomass plant that Council Superintendent Murray Dalgleish said is critical to the economic future of his Adams County community, surrounded by the Payette National Forest.

The plant would turn small-diameter trees — too thin to be used for lumber — and other “woody biomass” into power. The big trees in the forest remain intact, loggers have jobs, and forest supervisors can direct the thinning to areas that pose catastrophic wildfire threats or butt up against populated areas.