Thursday, November 16, 2017

EPIC Files Ballot Measure to Ban Clearcutting in Humboldt County



Humboldt Seeks to Join Marin County in Banning Clearcutting
November 15, 2017

Eureka, Calif.—The Environmental Protection Information Center (EPIC) has submitted a voter initiative to Humboldt County to ban the destructive forestry practice known as “clearcutting” within Humboldt County and implement well recognized principles of sustainable forestry. Clearcutting and other even-aged management involves the removal of all or nearly of a forest stand in a single harvest. This extreme forest disturbance harms water quality and wildlife habitat, and exacerbates climate change. Volunteers will be collecting signatures on the ordinance with the intention of making it on the general election ballot in November 2018.

“Clearcutting is a relic of another era,” said Tom Wheeler, Executive Director of EPIC. “Clearcutting is bad for Humboldt County. It releases more carbon dioxide than a forest fire, destroys fish and wildlife habitat, and pollutes drinking water. As Humboldt County residents, we demand better.”

Timber can be harvested using less destructive methods, such as selection logging, which removes only a portion of trees while preserving the forest. This ordinance would require these types of methods to be employed. The ordinance would also require that timber companies retain large, old trees and other wildlife trees that are disproportionately important for species that depend on older forests.

Humboldt County would join Marin County in banning clearcutting, and would join a number of other local governments, including Berkeley, Brisbane, Daly City, Davis, Menlo Park, Monte Sereno, San Francisco, Saratoga, and Sunnyvale, in expressing their opposition to the practice. Local regulation of timber production is preempted by state law; however, the California Forest Practice Act provides that counties can recommend rules to the Board of Forestry and Fire Protection. These rules must be adopted if the rules are consistent with the Forest Practice Act and necessary to protect the needs of Humboldt County.

Successful timber companies do not need to employ clearcutting to provide good paying jobs. In the redwood region, Humboldt Redwood Company and Mendocino Redwood Company both do not utilize clearcutting in their forest management. Across the state, other companies, such as Collins Pine, based in Plumas County, have likewise demonstrated that clearcutting isn’t a necessary tool to be successful.

The Environmental Protection Information Center (EPIC) advocates for science- based protection and restoration of Northwest California’s forests, using an integrated, science-based approach, combining public education, citizen advocacy, and strategic litigation.

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Sierra Pacific Industries to clearcut log NE of Mc Cloud, CA.


Click on photo for FULL SIZE version
THP 2-17-061 SIS (Ed’s Cabin THP) Sierra Pacific Industries, 1,223 acres; 100% clearcut logging.  Edson Creek (MD: T41N R1E Sec.9, 11, 14, 15, 17, 20, 21, 22, 23, 26, 27, 28, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34).  Winter operations, moderate erosion hazard, slopes up to 50%, oversized units, herbicides, spotted owl, northern goshawk, hot rock daisy, trees over 30” dbh.  Estimated public comment deadline: 12/13/17. VIEW

This THP is about 14 miles NE of Mc Cloud, CA and about 8 miles north of Highway 89 at an elevation of 4,500 to 6,200 feet.  Sierra Pacific Industries is planning a clearcut tractor based logging operation in ponderosa pine, true fir, sugar pine, incense cedar, lodge pole pine, and Douglas fir forests.  The THP area drains towards the Mc Cloud River which contains the uncommon redband trout which is listed as a sensitive species.  SPI is planning to construct roads and landings during the winter period.  There are northern goshawk nests in sections 9, 11, 21 and 25.  Hot rock daisy was found on a landing in unit 15E in section 15, and there are 4 spotted owl nesting territories within 1.3 miles of the THP area.

Sierra Pacific Industries to clearcut log trees up to 30” dbh NE of Weaverville, CA.


PANORAMIC Photo By trinityalpsphoto
THP 2-17-060 TRI (Manticore THP) Sierra Pacific Industries, 766 acres; 90% clearcut, 7% shelterwood, 3% selection, 1% roadside logging.  Upper Rush Creek, Buckeye Creek, Little Browns Creek, Tom Lang Gulch, Lower Rush Creek (MD: T33N R8W Sec.6, 7; T33N R9W Sec.1, 3, 10, 11; T34N R9W Sec.14, 15, 23, 25, 35, 36).  Winter operations, high erosion hazard, steep slopes up to 70%, landslide terrain, 10 road drainage work sites, oversized units, herbicides, impaired 303.d watershed, coho watershed, spotted owl, 3 sensitive plant species, trees up to 30” dbh.  Estimated public comment deadline: 12/13/17. VIEW

This THP is about 4 miles NE of Weaverville, CA and Highway 299, and about 4 miles NW of Lewiston, CA at an elevation of 1,900 to 3,500 feet.  Sierra Pacific Industries is planning a mostly clearcut tractor and cable logging operation on steep and unstable slopes in Douglas fir, ponderosa pine, white fir, sugar pine, and incense cedar forests.  The THP area flows into the Trinity River which is listed as an impaired watershed for sediment and siltation.  There are loose granitic soils throughout the THP area, and dormant landslide terrain sites (steep headwall swales/debris slides) in units 4650, 4670, 4671, a cutbank failure off a seasonal road in unit 4814, and an unstable area at the head of a class II (mid sized) watercourse in unit 4687.  SPI is planning to use ground based equipment (feller bunchers) in areas designated for cable logging, and use ground based equipment on existing skid trails with slopes over 50% grade that have a high erosion hazard.  They also are planning to use an existing tractor road within a class III (intermittent) watercourse in unit 4809, and use an existing tractor road within a class II (mid sized) watercourse in unit 4710.  Ten road drainage sites are planned for work including rocking, dip construction, ditch cleaning and culvert repair/replacement.  Slender false lupine was found within units 4655, 4676, 4694, 4702, 4769, 4796, 4804, 4814, 5114 and 5120, Glaucous tauscia was found within units 4676, 4687, 4694, 4702, 4705 and 5120, and Klamath mountain catchfly was found adjacent to unit 4808.  There are 6 spotted owl nesting territories within 1.3 miles of the THP area.

Humboldt Redwood Company to log trees up to 65” dbh in marbled murrelet stands SW of Scotia, CA.


PANORAMIC Photo By Redwood Transect
1-17-110 HUM (Upper Monument THP) Humboldt Redwood Company, 504.3 acres; 47% variable retention, 26% selection, 16% no-harvest, 10% group selection, 1% roadside logging.  Howe Creek, Monument Creek (HUM: T1N R1E Sec.19, 30, 31; T1N R1W Sec.2, 3, 11, 13, 14, 24, 25).  Winter operations, moderate erosion hazard, steep slopes up to 70%, landslide terrain, road failure sites, 115 road drainage work sites, impaired 303.d watershed, logging inside large tree marbled murrelet stands, herbicides, coho watershed, spotted owl, foothill yellow legged frog, 4 sensitive plant species, trees up to 65” dbh.  Estimated public comment deadline: 12/03/17. VIEW

This THP is a couple of miles SW of Scotia, CA and Highway 101 and about 3 miles SW of Rio Dell, CA at an elevation of 200 to 2,400 feet.  Humboldt Redwood Company is planning a tractor and cable logging operation on steep and unstable slopes in redwood, Douglas fir and grand fir forests (trees up to 60” dbh (units 1-8), trees up to 65” dbh (units 9 and 10), trees up to 60” dbh (units 11 and 12), and trees up to 60” dbh (unit 14)).  Logging is proposed inside large tree marbled murrelet stands 76B, 136B, 118B, 333C, 359C, 466D, 234B, 134B, 122B, 62B, 115B, 119B and 65B within units 10, 11, 12 and 14. The THP area flows into the Eel River which is listed as an impaired watershed for sediment/siltation and temperature.  There are 111 landslide terrain sites in the THP area including multiple debris slides, earth flows, disrupted ground, steep inner gorges, debris flows, rock slides, and numerous road related bank sloughing, fill slope and cut bank failures.  Humboldt Redwood Company is planning to use ground based equipment on existing skid trails on slopes over 65% grade, and use ground based equipment on existing skid trails in areas designated for cable logging.  They also are proposing to re-construct several portions of an existing road system across an unstable area, and construct a seasonal road across an unstable area between units 4 and 5.  115 road drainage sites are planned for work including rocking, dip construction, ditch cleaning, culvert repair/replacement and restoration of washed out crossings.  A foothill yellow legged frog was reported inside section 3, Pacific gilia was found near the SE corner of unit 14, Maple leaved checker bloom was found on a roadside near unit 9, Siskiyou checker bloom was found along Monument Road adjacent to the THP area, and Howell’s montia was found on a road system adjacent to units 13 and 14.  There are 14 spotted owl nesting territories within 1.3 miles of the THP area.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Green Diamond Resource Company to clearcut log east of Smith River, CA.


PANORAMIO Photo By Gregg Phipps
THP 1-17-108 DEL (Rowdy Divide THP) Green Diamond Resource Company, 266 acres; 65% clearcut, 23% selection, 11% no-harvest, 1% roadside logging.  Lower Rowdy Creek, Savoy Creek (HUM: T18N R1E Sec.17, 19, 20, 21, 29, 30).  Wet weather operations, moderate erosion hazard, steep slopes up to 70%, steep roads, landslide terrain, 23 road drainage work sites, oversized units, herbicides, coho watershed, spotted owl, bald eagle, Del Norte salamander, coastal tailed frog, scattered large trees.  Estimated public comment deadline: 12/02/17. VIEW

This THP is a few miles east of Smith River, CA at an elevation of 200 to 1,300 feet.  Green Diamond Resource Company is planning a mostly clearcut tractor and cable logging operation on steep and unstable slopes in redwood, Douglas fir and western hemlock forests.  There are shallow rapid landslides in units A, E, F, G and H, and a deep seated landslide in unit B.  Green Diamond Resource Company is planning to use temporary roads, landings and crossings during the winter period, and construct 150 feet of temporary road on slopes exceeding 20% grade in unit H.  23 road drainage sites are planned for work including rocking, dip construction, ditch cleaning, and culvert repair/replacement.  There is an historic (1974) report of a bald eagle nest tree greater than .5 miles west of the THP area.  In 2008, Del Norte Salamanders were reported in or near units B, C, D, E, F and G, and a coastal tailed frog was spotted immediately adjacent to unit D in the THP area.  There are 4 spotted owl nesting territories within 1.3 miles of the THP area including spotted owl nesting territories within .25 miles of units C and D, and within .5 miles of units B and E.

Sierra Pacific Industries to clearcut log on steep and unstable slopes SE of Weaverville, CA.


PANORAMIO Photo By Steve Schmorleitz
THP 2-17-054 TRI (Celeste THP) Sierra Pacific Industries, 901 acres; 77% clearcut, 15% fuelbreak, 5% selection, 2% roadside, 1% shelterwood, 1% no-harvest logging.  Upper Grass Valley Creek, Lower Indian Creek, Tom Lang Gulch, Lower Grass Valley Creek, Middle Indian Creek (MD: T32N R8W Sec.6, 7, 8, 17, 18; T32N R9W Sec.1, 2, 9, 10, 11, 12, 15; T33N R8W Sec.31; T33N R9W Sec.35, 36).  Winter operations, high erosion hazard, steep slopes up to 70%, landslide terrain, 47 road drainage work sites, impaired 303.d watershed, oversized units, herbicides, coho watershed, spotted owl, 3 sensitive plant species, scattered large trees.  Estimated public comment deadline: 11/30/17. VIEW

This THP is 5 miles east of Douglas City, CA, 5.8 miles SE of Weaverville, CA and a few miles south of Highway 299 at an elevation of 1,880 to 4,800 feet.  Sierra Pacific Industries is planning a mostly clearcut tractor and cable logging operation on steep and unstable slopes in Douglas fir, ponderosa pine, sugar pine and white fir forests.  The THP area flows into the Trinity River which is listed as an impaired watershed for sediment and siltation.  There are 13 landslide terrain sites including unstable areas in or around units 4605, 415, 3603, 412, 4592, 603, 405, 4921, 4901 and 4934.  Sierra Pacific Industries is planning to use tractors on slopes over 50% grade with a high erosion hazard rating in units 602 and 603, and use ground based equipment on steep slopes over 65% grade in units 415 and 4545.  They also are planning to use ground based equipment in areas designated for cable logging for fire line construction, and on slopes up to 65% grade with a moderate erosion hazard rating.  Ground based equipment is proposed for use on skid trails in unstable areas in units 4899 and 4901, and on 3 existing landings and associated skid trails within class I (year round) and class II (mid sized) watercourses, and on 4 existing skid trails within class II watercourse areas.  47 road drainage sites are planned for work including rocking, dip construction, ditch cleaning and culvert repair/replacement.  Three populations of clustered lady’s slippers were found outside of units 4545 and 4605, blushing wild buckwheat was found near units 4930 and 4932, and Congdon’s buckwheat was found within units 4899, 4932, 403, 4579, 4592, 4599 and 4605.  There are 3 spotted owl nesting territories within 1.3 miles of the THP area.

Sunday, November 5, 2017

Humboldt Redwood Company to helicopter log near large tree marbled murrelet stand 638D east of Scotia, CA.


PANORAMIC Photo By RedwoodTransect
THP 1-17-107 HUM (LVD 17 THP) Humboldt Redwood Company, 344.5 acres; 46% selection, 45% variable retention, 9% no-harvest, 1% roadside logging.  Hely Creek (HUM: T1N R1E Sec.1, 12, 13; T1N R2E Sec. 6, 7, 18).  Winter operations, moderate erosion hazard, steep slopes up to 70%, landslide terrain, road failure sites, 63 road drainage work sites, impaired 303.d watershed, herbicides, large tree helicopter logging, coho watershed, spotted owl, peregrine falcon, trees up to 40” dbh.  Estimated public comment deadline: 11/26/17. VIEW

This THP is about 3 miles SE of Rio Dell, CA and Highway 101 and about 3 miles east of Scotia, CA at an elevation of 400 to 1,400 feet.  Humboldt Redwood Company is planning a tractor, cable and helicopter logging (large tree marbled murrelet stand 638D exists between units 3 and 4) operation in redwood, Douglas fir and grand fir forests.  The THP area flows into the Van Duzen River which is listed as an impaired watershed for sediment and temperature.  There are 8 road related failure sites, and numerous landslide terrain sites including fill failures, debris slides, debris slides, earth flows and disrupted ground.  Humboldt Redwood Company is planning to use ground based equipment on existing skid trails in areas designated for cable logging, and use ground based equipment in unstable areas in unit 4, and construct a segment of the L58.77 road across an unstable area.  63 road drainage sites are planned for work including rocking, dip construction, ditch cleaning, and culvert repair/replacement.  There is a peregrine falcon nest site within .25 miles of unit 5, and over a dozen spotted owl nesting territories within 1.3 miles of the THP area.

Sierra Pacific Industries to clearcut log adjacent to Douglas City, CA


Click on photo for FULL SIZE version
THP 2-17-053 TRI (Fog Horn) Sierra Pacific Industries, 340 acres; 93% clearcut, 4% roadside, 3% selection logging.  Lower Weaver Creek, Dutton Creek, Oregon Gulch, Maxwell Creek, Soldier Creek (MD: T32N R10W Sec.1; T33N R10W Sec.15, 22, 23, 27, 33).  Winter operations, moderate erosion hazard, unstable areas, road failure sites, steep slopes, steep roads, 8 road drainage work sites, impaired 303.d watershed, oversized units, herbicides, coho watershed, spotted owl, Dudley’s rush, scattered large trees.  Estimated public comment deadline: 11/20/17. VIEW

This THP is SW of Weaverville, CA and adjacent to Douglas City, CA and Highway 3 at an elevation of 1,800 to 4,000 feet.  Sierra Pacific Industries is planning a clearcut tractor and cable logging operation on steep and unstable slopes in white fir, ponderosa pine, sugar pine and Douglas fir forests.  The THP area flows into the Trinity River which is listed as an impaired watershed for sediment and siltation.  There are unstable areas associated with units 3302, 3330 and 2240, and a fill failure has caused a road bed to drop down 5 feet in section 15.  SPI is planning to use ground based equipment on slopes up to 60% grade in areas designated for cable logging to construct fire lines, and construct and use roads, landings and crossings during the winter period.  They also are planning to construct segments of steep roads over 15% grade and/or pitches of steep roads over 20% grade in section 27.  Eight road drainage sites are planned for work including rocking, dip construction, ditch cleaning, and culvert repair/replacement.  Dudley’s rush was found in section 33.  There are 2 spotted owl nesting territories within 1.3 miles of the THP area.