By Sarah Matsumoto
Sierra Club - Sierra Nevada Campaign
Did you know that, here in California, 75% of our water comes from our forests? But right now, big timber companies like Sierra Pacific Industries (SPI) are allowed to threaten this precious resource to line their pockets.
SPI is able to hide behind paperwork and bureaucracy while threatening our precious watersheds with destructive clearcutting.
From beginning to end, cleacutting is a devastating process. After the vast majority of trees are chopped down, the same area is usually aggressively doused in herbicides and pesticides -- chemicals that can potentially seep into our drinking water. At the same time, soil no longer held in place by trees flows into rivers and streams, clogging the waterways with sediment.
23 million Californians get their water from the Sierra Nevada alone, but nearly all watersheds in the region are designated as either polluted or impaired.
An open and clear accounting of what is happening to California's forests will be the first step towards the true accountability and public oversight necessary to protect our forests and watersheds.
Unfortunately, SPI doesn't make it easy for us to know what is happening. Just last week, after a torrent of critical public questions on its Facebook page, SPI blocked all public comments. We know they are listening but we have to keep up the drumbeat.
The water that flows from California's forests is invaluable to our way of life -- communities rely on it for clean drinking water, it sustains our agriculture economy and provides crucial habitat for much of our beloved and threatened wildlife. Will you stand with us to protect our forests, water and way of life?
Sign the petition and show SPI we won’t be silenced -- we demand to know what is happening to California's forests and water!