Thursday, August 30, 2018

ACTION ALERT: Stop the Gutting of California's THP Process. Oppose SB 901/AB 425.


Photo Courtesy of Sierra Club Stop Clearcutting CA Campaign
Faced with the worst summer fire season in 10 years, Gov. Jerry Brown is proposing broad new changes to California’s logging rules that would allow landowners to cut larger trees and build temporary roads without obtaining a permit (THP) as a way to thin more forests across the state.

The proposal — which has the support of the timber industry but is being opposed by more than a dozen environmental groups — would represent one of the most significant changes to the state’s timber harvesting (THP) rules in 45 years.

  • SB 901/AB 425 would allow trees to be removed from 300-acre plots without the benefits of timber harvest (THP) planning process.  
  • SB 901/AB 425 would increase the legally allowed diameter of trees that can be removed without triggering a timber harvest plan requirement. The diameter size will increase from the current 26 to 32 inches in logged areas and up to 36 inches in roadway construction areas.
  • SB 901/AB 425 would allow up to 600-foot long roads to be cut through forested areas with little to no oversight. This language essentially allows 600-foot-long clearcuts throughout California’s forests without the benefit of agency oversight. 
  • SB 901/AB 425 would lead to widespread biomass burning and increased air pollution.  
PLEASE CALL your state senator and assembly member and ask them to oppose AB 425 and SB 901. California already has an existing Timber Harvest Plan (THP) plan process where landowners and individuals can harvest trees utilizing the Forest Practices Act, so changes are not needed. Go to http://findyourrep.legislature.ca.gov/ and enter your address to contact your state assembly member and state senator.

Monday, August 20, 2018

Sierra Pacific Industries to clearcut log SW of Whiskeytown, CA.


Google Earth Photo By Christian Wulfestieg
THP 2-18-040 TRI (Bullychop THP) Sierra Pacific Industries, 233 acres; 88% clearcut, 12% selection logging. Upper Indian Creek (MD: T31N R8W Sec.2, 3; T32N R8W Sec.33).  Winter operations, high erosion hazard, steep slopes up to 70%, impaired 303.d watershed, oversized units, herbicides, coho watershed, 3 sensitive plant species, trees up to 30” dbh.  Estimated public comment deadline: 09/14/18. SUBMIT COMMENTS,  VIEW THP

This THP is about 8 miles SW of Whiskeytown, CA, 10 miles SE of Douglas City, CA and about 4 miles south of Highway 299 at an elevation of 3,000 to 5,500 feet.  Sierra Pacific Industries is planning a clearcut tractor and cable logging operation in Douglas fir, ponderosa pine, incense cedar, white fir and sugar pine forests.  The THP area flows into the Trinity River which is listed as an impaired watershed for sediment.  SPI is planning to use ground based equipment in areas designated for cable logging, and construct and use crossings, landings and roads during the winter period.  Blushing wild buckwheat was found along an open rocky ridge in unit 32D, California lady’s slipper was found along a seep and road near unit 32D, and Heckner’s Lewisia was found along open rocky outcroppings and rocky soil in and around unit 32D.  There are 2 spotted owl nesting territories within 1.3 miles of the THP area.

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Green Diamond Resource Company planning a pair of clearcut THPs NE of Klamath, CA and the Klamath River.


Click on photo for FULL SIZE version
THP 1-18-080 DEL (T10 East THP) Green Diamond Resource Company, 234.5 acres; 59% commercial thin, 25% clearcut, 9% no-harvest, 6% selection, 1% roadside logging. Lower West Fork Hunter Creek, Hoppaw Creek (HUM: T13N R1E Sec.1, 2, 12; T14N R1E Sec.36).  Wet weather operations, moderate erosion hazard, steep slopes over 65%, landslide terrain, 16 road drainage work sites, impaired 303.d watershed, oversized units, herbicides, coho watershed, spotted owl, marbled murrelet, osprey, Del Norte salamander, foothill yellow legged frog, southern torrent salamander, coastal tailed frog, trees up to 35” dbh. Estimated public comment deadline: 09/11/18. SUBMIT COMMENTS,  VIEW THP

This THP is just NE of the town of Klamath, CA and the Klamath River at an elevation of 400 to 2,000 feet.  Green Diamond Resource Company is planning a tractor and cable logging operation in redwood, Douglas fir, grand fir, western hemlock and Sitka spruce forests. The THP area flows into the Lower Klamath River watershed which is listed as an impaired watershed for sediment, temperature, dissolved oxygen and nutrients. 16 road drainage sites are planned for work including rocking, dip construction, ditch cleaning and culvert repair/replacement.  The T 10 marbled murrelet stand is within .25 miles of unit F, the T10 Road and T100 Road, and the Big Mynot marbled murrelet stand is within .25 miles of the T10 Road. Three osprey nests are located within .25 miles of the T10 Road, southern torrent salamanders were reported 100 feet west of unit F, and coastal tailed frogs were reported 3,500 feet south of unit F.  In 1990, a Del Norte salamander was reported in unit C, and foothill yellow legged frogs were found 1.5 miles south of unit H along the Klamath River.  There are 4 spotted owl nesting territories within 1.3 miles of the THP area.

THP 1-18-081 DEL (T10 West THP) Green Diamond Resource Company, 237 acres; 76% clearcut, 14% selection, 9% no-harvest, 1% roadside logging. Lower West Fork Hunter Creek, Lower Turwar Creek (HUM: T14N R1E Sec.23, 24, 25, 26, 36; T14N R2E Sec.30, 31).  Wet weather operations, moderate erosion hazard, steep slopes up to 75%, landslide terrain, impaired 303.d watershed, oversized units, herbicides, coho watershed, spotted owl, marbled murrelet, osprey, southern torrent salamander, coastal tailed frog, foothill yellow legged frog, scattered large trees. Estimated public comment deadline: 09/11/18. SUBMIT COMMENTS,  VIEW THP

This THP is a few miles NE of the town of Klamath, CA and the Klamath River at an elevation of 200 to 2,000 feet. Green Diamond Resource Company is planning a mostly clearcut tractor and cable logging operation on steep and unstable slopes in redwood, Douglas fir, grand fir, western hemlock and Sitka spruce forests. The THP area flows into the Lower Klamath River watershed which is listed as an impaired watershed for sediment, temperature, dissolved oxygen and nutrients. There is a large deep seated landslide terrain site in unit I, and a steep headwall swale along the northern portion of unit E. Green Diamond Resource Company is planning to construct two segments of roads over 300 feet within 100 feet of a class II (mid sized) watercourse area in unit C. Four marbled murrelet stands are located within the THP area including: the “East Fork Hunter” marbled murrelet stand within .25 miles of units D and E, the T10 Road, T400.59R Road, and T400 Road, the “T10 Shop” marbled murrelet stand within .25 miles of the T10 Road, the “Big Mynot” marbled murrelet stand within .25 miles of the T10 and T200 Roads, and the “Pisgah View” marbled murrelet stand within .25 miles of the Mynot Creek Road.  There are 3 osprey nests within .25 miles of the T10 Road, foothill yellow legged frogs are known to occur at Turwar Creek 4,000 feet east of unit H, and southern torrent salamanders and coastal tailed frogs are known to occur within or immediately adjacent to unit I. Spotted owl nesting territories are located within .25 miles of unit E, and within .5 miles of units A, B, C, D, F, G and I.

Humboldt Redwood Company to log on steep and unstable slopes SW of Scotia, CA.


Google Earth Photo By Patti Burke
THP 1-18-077 HUM (Howe Grandis THP) Humboldt Redwood Company, 262.5 acres; 55% variable retention, 25% no-harvest, 14% group selection, 6% selection logging.  Howe Creek (HUM: T1N R1W Sec.14, 15).  Winter operations, moderate erosion hazard, steep slopes up to 70%, landslide terrain, road failure sites, 27 road drainage work sites, impaired 303.d watershed, herbicides, coho watershed, trees up to 42” dbh. Estimated public comment deadline: 08/31/18. SUBMIT COMMENTS, VIEW THP

This THP is about 3 miles SW of Scotia, CA and Highway 101 at an elevation of 830 to 1,920 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.  The THP area flows into the Eel River which is listed as an impaired watershed for sediment and temperature.  There are 28 landslide terrain sites including multiple debris slides, earth flows, debris slide slopes, debris flow torrents, disrupted ground, steep inner gorges, gullying, and multiple road related fill slope and cut bank failures.  Humboldt Redwood Company is planning to use ground based equipment in areas designated for cable logging on existing skid trails, and use an existing skid road inside a class II (mid sized) watercourse area in the NE corner of unit one. 27 road drainage sites are planned for work including rocking, dip construction, ditch cleaning and culvert repair/replacement.  There are six spotted owl nesting territories within 1.3 miles of the THP area.

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Sierra Pacific Industries to log by Malakoff Diggins State Park NE of Nevada City, CA.


Malakoff Diggins State Historic Park Photo By Wikipedia
THP 2-18-034 NEV (Humbug THP) Sierra Pacific Industries, 1,045 acres; 79% commercial thin, 19% clearcut, 2% rehab, misc special logging. S. Fork Poorman Creek, Squirrel Creek, Roscoe Creek, Humbug Creek (MD: T17N R9E Sec.1; T17N R10E Sec.3, 4, 5, 6, 7; T18N R10E Sec.25, 27, 34, 35).  Winter operations, moderate erosion hazard, steep slopes up to 80%, impaired 303.d watershed, Malakoff Diggins State Park, Missouri Bar Trail, herbicides, spotted owl, northern goshawk, foothill yellow legged frog, Sierra Nevada yellow legged frog, scattered large trees.  Estimated public comment deadline: 08/19/18. VIEW

This THP is about 9 miles NE of Nevada City, CA and a few miles north of the South Fork of the Yuba River by Malakoff Diggins State Park (unit 0101 is within 200 feet) at an elevation of 2,800 to 4,800 feet.  Sierra Pacific Industries is proposing a tractor and cable logging operation on steep and unstable slopes in white fir, ponderosa pine, sugar pine, Douglas fir and incense cedar forests. There are 2 unstable areas in section 25 that appeared after severe weather during the winter of 2017.  SPI is planning to use and construct roads, landings and crossings during the winter period, and use an existing road and landing inside a class III (intermittent) watercourse area near unit 27-0309.  Seven foothill yellow legged frog sightings were reported near the THP area ranging from .01 to 1.52 miles away.  In 2016, a California spotted owl was reported in section 3, within .1 miles of the nearest THP unit, and in 1990, a California spotted owl was reported in section 12, within .15 miles of the nearest THP unit.  In 1998, a northern goshawk was reported in section 13, within 1.2 miles of the nearest THP unit, and in 2000, a Sierra Nevada yellow legged frog was reported at Poorman Creek within .66 miles of the nearest THP unit.  2,300 feet of the Missouri Bar Trail passes through the THP area in section 7.

Friday, August 3, 2018

Humboldt Redwood Company to log trees up to 60” DBH east of Carlotta, CA.


PANORAMIC Photo By Redwood Transect
THP 1-18-073 HUM (Yager Vista THP) Humboldt Redwood Company, 255.6 acres; 61% group selection, 25% variable retention, 10% selection, 3% no-harvest, 1% roadside logging.  Copper Mill Creek, Cummings Creek, Blanton Creek, South Fork Yager Creek (HUM: T2N R1E Sec.13; T2N R2E Sec.7, 16, 18, 21).  Winter operations, moderate erosion hazard, steep slopes over 65%, landslide terrain, 25 road drainage work sites, impaired 303.d watershed, coho watershed, spotted owl, marbled murrelet, trees up to 60” dbh.  Estimated public comment deadline: 08/17/18. VIEW

This THP is about 3 miles east of Carlotta, CA and Highway 36 at an elevation of 1,200 to 2,400 feet.  Humboldt Redwood Company is planning a tractor and cable logging operation on steep and unstable slopes in redwood and Douglas fir forests (unit 4 has trees up to 60” dbh).  The THP area flows into the Van Duzen River which is listed as an impaired watershed for sediment and temperature.  There are 23 landslide terrain sites including multiple debris slides, earth flows, disrupted ground, incised channels and gullies within units 1 and 4.  Humboldt Redwood Company is planning to use ground based equipment in unstable areas to construct roads and landings within unit 1, use ground based equipment on an existing skid trail segment within a watercourse area in unit 1, and use ground based equipment on 2 existing skid trail segments within a watercourse area in unit 3.  Twenty five road drainage sites are planned for use including rocking, dip construction, ditch cleaning and culvert repair/replacement.  The Allen Creek marbled murrelet stand is within .25 miles of unit A, and there are 7 spotted owl nesting territories within 1.3 miles of the THP area.

Mattole Residents File Grievance Over Certification of Humboldt Redwood Company Forest Logging.


Press Release from the Lost Coast League
PETROLIA, Calif., –  The Petrolia-based Lost Coast League (LCL) filed a formal grievance with SCS Global Services for certifying as sustainable a logging plan by Humboldt Redwood Co. (HRC) on untouched, primary forests in the Mattole River watershed on Rainbow Ridge.

SCS has contracted to review timber companies’ practices for the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification program.  Firms awarded certification are allowed to brand their lumber as coming from sustainably managed lands.  This can bring companies higher prices per unit at lumber yards and preferred market positions.

In the grievance letter the LCL contends that cutting those old forests is a violation of FSC standards, which restrict “sustainable” production to previously managed forests and prohibit the conversion of old, mature forests to plantations.

Secondly, the LCL letter cites FSC standards that require HRC to “use integrated pest management and silviculture systems which avoid, or aim at eliminating, the use of chemical pesticides,” clearly limiting herbicide use to what LCL terms “extreme and exceptional circumstances.”  To date, however, nearly 25 percent of HRC (and sister company Mendocino Redwood Co, or MRC) holdings have been chemically treated.  LCL contends that the timber company is using herbicides well beyond the “extreme and exceptional threshold.”  (The HRC/MRC website notes 78,000 acres have been treated with herbicides.  But more acres have been treated since the time of that assertion — including some 163 acres of previously un-entered Douglas-fir/mixed hardwood stands at Rainbow Ridge in the Mattole watershed.)

According to LCL President Ellen E. Taylor, “Our efforts to resolve this issue directly with the company have been extensive and fully exhausted.  For this reason we seek resolution through the dispute resolution process afforded under SCS and FSC policy.”

The League’s David Simpson added, “There is a wide community interest in seeing the health of the Mattole watershed restored.  Since 1980 many resident landowners, together with state and federal agencies, have committed enormous private and public resources to moving the restoration process forward.

“Logging Rainbow Ridge’s native forests cannot qualify as sustainable under any reasonable criteria, especially under FSC’s published standards, and would only serve to set back the gains our community’s restoration efforts have made.”

Filing this letter sets into motion a formal grievance process.  SCS has five business days to acknowledge the letter and 14 days to respond as to whether an investigation is warranted and what recourses are available for resolution.

In submitting the letter, LCL is joined by over 40 Mattole residents, as well as the Mattole Salmon Group, members of the Mattole Restoration Council, the Center for Biological Diversity, the Environmental Protection Information Center (EPIC), Ecological Rights Foundation, Institute for Sustainable Forestry, Forests Forever, Californians for Alternatives to Toxics, Julia Butterfly Hill, actor Peter Coyote and more than 50 additional concerned citizens.

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Green Diamond Resource Company to clearcut log trees up to 50” dbh NE of Trinidad, CA.


PANORAMIC Photo By nthawoodz
THP 1-18-069 HUM (Scattered Maple THP) Green Diamond Resource Company, 268.5 acres; 59% clearcut, 32% selection, 9% no-harvest logging.  Maple Creek (HUM: T8N R1E Sec.3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 10, 17, 32; T8N R1W Sec.12; HUM: T9N R1E Sec.32).  Wet weather operations, moderate erosion hazard, steep slopes up to 75%, landslide terrain, road failure sites, 3 road drainage work sites, oversized units, herbicides, coho watershed, osprey, marbled murrelet, sharp shinned hawk, southern torrent salamander, coastal tailed frog, trees up to 50” dbh.  Estimated public comment deadline: 08/12/18. VIEW

This THP is about 3.5 miles NE of Trinidad, CA and Highway 101 at an elevation of 200 to 1,240 feet.  Green Diamond Resource Company is planning a mostly clearcut tractor and cable logging operation on steep and unstable slopes in Douglas fir, redwood and western hemlock forests (units E, F, G, H and I have trees up to 48” dbh).  There are 12 landslide terrain sites; including unstable areas inside units C, D, I and G, and a road related fill slope failure off the BL 2220 Road.  Ten osprey nests are located within .25 miles of haul roads; including an historic osprey nest within .25 miles of the LP Mill Road, an historic osprey nest within .25 miles of the BL1000 Road, and historic osprey nests within .25 miles of units C, D, H and I.  Marbled murrelet habitat is located 2.1 miles east of unit F, and marbled murrelet habitat exists in Humboldt Redwoods State Park lands within .25 miles of the LP Mill Road.  Southern torrent salamanders are known to occur within .5 miles of units B, C, D and G.  A sharp shinned hawk was reported .4 miles east of unit A, coastal tailed frogs are known to occur within .5 miles of units A, B and G, and there is a great blue heron rockery within .25 miles of the BL2000 Road.  There are spotted owl nesting territories within .25 miles of units C, D, E, H and I, and within .5 miles of units B and F.

Mendocino Redwood Company to log on steep and unstable slopes east of Elk, CA.


Click on photo for FULL SIZE version
THP 1-18-067 MEN (Lower Greenwood THP) Mendocino Redwood Company, 332 acres; 100% selection logging.  Lower Greenwood Creek (MD: T15N R16W Sec.30, 31; T15N R17W Sec.25).  Wet weather operations, high erosion hazard, steep slopes over 65%, landslide terrain, road failure sites, 49 road drainage work sites, herbicides, coho watershed, scattered large trees.  Estimated public comment deadline: 08/11/18. VIEW

This THP is 1.2 miles east of Elk, CA and Highway 1 on the Mendocino coastline at an elevation of 120 to 1,330 feet.  Mendocino Redwood Company is planning a selection tractor and cable logging operation on steep and unstable slopes in redwood and Douglas fir forests.  There are 28 landslide terrain sites including multiple road related fill slope and cut slope failures, and multiple locations with debris slides, rock slides and debris flows near Greenwood Creek.  Mendocino Redwood Company is planning to use ground based equipment on existing skid trails with slopes over 50% grade with a high erosion hazard in units 1 and 2, and use ground based equipment on existing skid trails with steep slopes exceeding 65% grade within the west end of unit 2.  49 road drainage sites are planned for use including rocking, dip construction, ditch cleaning, culvert repair/replacement and restoration of washed out crossings. There re two spotted owl nesting territories within .7 miles of the THP area.