As you may have already read in the papers, the Stanislaus National Forest has announced its plans for salvage logging in the Rim Fire Area. In May and June, FOBTC worked closely with the Tuolumne River Trust and Yosemite-Stanislaus Solutions to understand the Draft Environmental Impact Statement and lead our letter-writing efforts. We first want to thank those of you that wrote letters to the US Forest Service in June, expressing our concerns about road building, wildlife habitat, and localized impacts near Camp.
Great News!!! We, along with our allies at the Tuolumne River Trust and Yosemite-Stanislaus Solutions, are very pleased with the plan announced by the Forest Service; they listened to all of the stakeholders and to you – the campers!
Organizations such as the Tuolumne River Trust (our old ally) and Yosemite-Stanislaus Solutions (of which we are a member) built a broad coalition to address the original US Forest Service proposal. The USFS responded to the stakeholders.
By incorporating a variety the input from environmental, recreation, local businesses, and timber interests, the highlights of this plan include:
– This plan does not directly impact Berkeley Tuolumne Camp, which will be treated separately. Only hazardous trees are being removed!
– While ‘Hazard Tree Removal’ will soon take place at Berkeley Tuolumne Camp (we want that of course), FOBTC hopes to work with the City of Berkeley and the US Forest Service to ensure that environmental impacts are reduced and ALL healthy trees are left standing.
– Salvage logging will take place on less than half of the acres that the US Forest Service originally proposed.
– It reduces the amount of timber harvested from 650 million board feet down to less than 210 million board feet. This is more consistent with the actual capacity of local lumber mills.
– Only 20% of the entire Rim Fire area will be salvaged logged. This will allow a lot of snag trees and wildlife habitat to remain untouched.
So, campers, thank you again for making your voices heard in June, and stay tuned for more updates as we work with our regional allies to influence the next chapter in the Rim Fire Recovery: the Reforestation Proposal.
Through this broad spectrum of support our allies and we can lobby for increased federal funding essential for the far-reaching restoration work required to restore the health of the forest and watershed.
This is a victory today for the USFS doing business in a new way, incorporating all the various stakeholder groups and working together in a cohesive way to sort out solutions! Progress!!
And for us, it gives our precious 14.5 acres a special prescription plan that focuses on hazardous tree removal only and special considerations when replanting begins. We truly are excited about this news..