Logging

An Oregon county is suing the state over forestry money. Commissioners from Linn County, located between Salem and Eugene, announced the $1.4 billion class-action lawsuit Wednesday at a press conference at the state Capitol.

Recent flash flooding in the Methow Valley area in northeast Washington state has critics asking the state to stop logging there.

brewbooks / Flickr

Shortly after this year's deadly Oso landslide, investigative reporters revealed that loggers had clear-cut in a no-logging zone directly above the hillside that collapsed.

That logging, back in 2004, removed trees in an area scientists had said could worsen the risk of landslides.

A report out Tuesday from the Department of Natural Resources leaves unanswered the question of why logging took place on what should have been forbidden ground.

brewbooks / Flickr

Washington state essentially prohibits logging on unstable slopes - since removing trees can worsen erosion and landslides. But it's not always obvious which slopes are unstable.

State officials Wednesday adopted a more cautious approach around slopes like the one that collapsed onto the town of Oso in March. That deep-seated landslide killed 43 people.

Snohomish County / Flickr

How to prevent unsafe logging on steep slopes that could cause future landslides will be at the center of discussions tomorrow in Olympia.

In the wake of the Oso tragedy, the state’s Forest Practices Board is in the process of updating permitting guidelines. The board is rewriting the section of its manual that deals with unstable slopes, based on the latest and best advice from a panel of geologists. State Forester Aaron Everett says while the guidelines are not binding, they should make it harder for companies seeking to log in unsafe areas.

No Logging Moratorium In Wake Of Oso Landslide

May 13, 2014
Snohomish County / Flickr

In the wake of the deadly landslide near Oso, Wash., there will be no immediate moratorium on logging around unstable slopes. Some conservationists and regulators wanted to push for that. Environmental lawyer and activist Peter Goldman of Seattle was one of them. But Goldman says the state Forest Practices Board learned Tuesday it doesn't have the authority to impose a logging moratorium.

Washington Governor's Office

A federal geologist doubts the cause of the deadly landslide near Oso, Wash. will ever be fully pinned down. During testimony in Olympia, USGS scientist Jonathan Godt said heavy rains in February and March certainly contributed to the slide. Geologists have also ruled out an earthquake as a trigger. But Godt says a big missing piece is groundwater flows, for which there's no data.

Washington Department of Natural Resources

State officials say they didn't approve clearcutting inside a no-logging zone directly above Saturday's deadly landslide in the town of Oso.  But aerial photos show a clearcut extending into the zone where a loss of trees would heighten the risk of landslides. 

Oregon Department of Forestry

Conservation groups want timber companies to know they'll sue if an endangered seabird's habitat is threatened by logging. The groups object to the potential privatization of the Elliott State Forest in Oregon's coast range.

2013: A Good Year For West Coast Log And Lumber Exports

Feb 24, 2014
Sean Mack / Wikimedia Commons

Lumber and log exports from the West Coast rose about 20 percent last year, with demand peaking in the fourth quarter.

Most of the West Coast logs shipped overseas are going to China, although Japan has upped its demand, as well. With limited forestlands of their own, these countries rely on the United States’ timber supply.

Timber industry and environmental groups will make a stab at collaboration to boost both logging and habitat restoration in the Olympic National Forest.

Oregon U.S. Senator Ron Wyden says his latest proposal to increase logging on Oregon forest land will also respect environmental concerns. 

kingtideoregon

The Port of Newport on the Oregon coast is planning to develop a log export terminal. That’s led to a conflict with the port’s new neighbors.

House Passes Bill To Increase Logging on Federal Land

Sep 20, 2013

The US House has passed legislation that would increase timber production both on National Forests and the former railroad properties in Western Oregon known as the O&C lands. Oregon Public Broadcasting's David Nogueras reports.

House Debates O&C Measure

Sep 20, 2013

The US House of Representatives debated a bill Thursday that would dramatically increase logging on federal forest lands in the Northwest.

Pew Poll Finds Support For Protecting O&C Forests

May 22, 2013

A majority of Oregon voters favor protections for the so called O and C forest lands in Western Oregon. That’s according to a new poll commissioned by the Pew Charitable Trusts. Amelia Templeton of Earthfix reports.

Some environmental groups say they're being unfairly targeted by legislation working its way through the Oregon capitol. A pair of measures take aim at protesters who get in the way of tree harvesting operations on state-owned forest land.

One bill would make it easier for timber companies to sue protesters. Another would increase criminal penalties for people who block logging operations.

Or, as Republican representative Wayne Krieger put it on the House floor, "The bill addresses environmental terrorism."

Oregon lawmakers want to increase penalties for protesters who disrupt logging on state-owned forestland. The Oregon House Monday approved a measure that makes it a crime to obstruct timber operations. But the bill would still allow protests that don't actually block logging crews.

Congress is back in session this week. The House will discuss two proposals that would increase logging in federal forests to raise money for struggling timber counties. Amelia Templeton of EarthFix reports.

Okko Pyykkö / Wikimedia Commons

An Oregon state representative has introduced a bill to try to curb the export of raw logs. A House committee held its first hearing on the bill today.

Judge Halts Timber Sale East Of Eugene

Mar 27, 2013
KLCC

A federal judge has blocked a proposed logging project on the Willamette National Forest, saying the government must first do an environmental impact statement, or EIS.

Wikimedia Commons

The Supreme Court today decided in favor of the timber industry in a case about the regulation of muddy waters that flow off logging roads. In a surprising move, one of the court’s conservative justices dissented, and sided with the environmentalists.

Wikimedia Commons

A new study from the research arm of the Forest Service suggests that leaving behind broken branches and the tips of treetops after logging can help fight invasive species.

Mt Hood National Forest Withdraws Thinning Sale

Dec 12, 2012

The Mt. Hood National Forest has withdrawn a decision to thin trees in the upper Clackamas River watershed. Reporting for EarthFix, Amelia Templeton has the story.

The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments Monday in a case from Oregon over water pollution from logging roads. Amelia Templeton of EarthFix reports a last minute rule change may have made the case moot.

Gus Van Vliet / U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

A federal judge has granted a preliminary injunction halting 11 timber sales in Oregon’s state forests. The state is being sued by three conservation groups who say the logging projects imperil a federally protected seabird.

Gus Van Vliet / Wikimedia Commons

Conservation groups are urging the Obama administration to keep logging restrictions in place for nearly 4 million acres of coastal forests in the Pacific Northwest. Otherwise, they say a threatened species of seabird could be at greater risk of extinction.

Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber has created a panel to try to end a stalemate over federal forest lands that once belonged to the corrupt Oregon and California railroad.

Jarek Tuszynski / Wikimedia Commons

The U.S. Supreme Court will not hear an appeal to the so-called Roadless Rule. The law bans development on nearly 60 million acres of national forest land.

Front Page: Logging And Literature In Forks

Sep 21, 2012
Photo by Konrad Roeder / Wikimedia Commons

This is Front Page, our new segment featuring conversations with journalists taking a closer look at the people, issues and events shaping lives across the Pacific Northwest. Today we’re way out west, western Washington that is, where the twilight is unusual. The town of Forks. Here’s our news director John Paxson.

Pages