24 Mar 2009, 10:10pm
Latest Forest News
by admin

Portland timber firm at center of contested Idaho land swap

by The Associated Press, March 23, 2009, [here]

Seven former administrators of the Palouse Ranger District in Idaho are blasting a U.S. Forest Service plan to trade 28,000 acres of managed forest for about 39,000 acres of logged-over land controlled by Western Pacific Timber of Portland.

John Krebs, a retired Forest Service employee, said the plan is fundamentally flawed because much of the public land has been carefully managed for the public’s use.

“The whole Palouse is prime,” he said. “It’s got old growth in it, riparian protection. It is the prime example of management. And the Forest Service has never told the public this story.”

Western Pacific Timber is offering to trade land it owns in northern Idaho that includes portions of the Lewis and Clark and Nez Perce National Historic Trails.

The timber company is owned by lumberman and developer Tim Blixseth, who bought the land in 2005 from the Plum Creek Timber Co. and then announced he was interested in trading it for public land.

Krebs and the others have written letters to local and national officials detailing their concerns about the proposed Upper Lochsa Land Exchange.

Earlier this year, Krebs wrote a seven-page letter of protest to Tom Reilly, supervisor on the Clearwater National Forest. The other retired foresters co-signed the letter. … [more]



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