23 Jan 2008, 4:06pm
by admin

Appearing Soon: the Pacific Northwest Forest Legacy Act

Congressman Peter DeFazio (D, OR) is preparing legislation he calls the Pacific Northwest Forest Legacy Act. A “draft discussion document” is slated to appear on a new website DeFazio has established [here].

Already on Defazio’s site there are “Frequently Asked Questions,” an outline of the Bill, and “volume estimates,” but the actual proposed draft Bill is not up yet.

The descriptive verbiage indicates that the Pacific Northwest Forest Legacy Act is, in part, an outgrowth of the Dec. 13, 2007 testimonies to the US Senate Energy & Natural Resources Subcommittee on Public Lands and Forests [here]. SOS Forests has also posted previously on the political run-up to this legislation [here, and here].

Without the actual language, it is impossible to judge the current merits and demerits of the Pacific Northwest Legacy Act. Some of the descriptive verbiage that has been posted is encouraging; other is not. In some parts the verbiage appears to be self-contradictory. But in any case, it is the actual legal language of the legislation that must be debated, adjusted, refined, and finalized.

There is no substantial reason to be in favor or opposed to the Pacific Northwest Forest Legacy Act at this time. Even if the draft doc was available, no doubt there’s a lot more sausage-making yet to go. But it does seem to have some potential value, if only to bring forest issues to the forefront.

SOS Forests will be tracking the PNWFLA very closely. We have even created a special category. Expect updates and analyses right here as this process unfurls.



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