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Policy Update Week of July 11, 2011


  1. Colorado/Wyoming SAF State Society and National SAF Comment on 2011 Proposed Colorado Roadless Rule

    Colorado/Wyoming SAF and national SAF submitted a joint comment letter on the 2011 Proposed Colorado Roadless Rule. The CO/WY state society led the effort, with assistance from national SAF, by completing an analysis of the Proposed Rule, creating talking points that identified SAF's main issues of concern, and developing a final comment document. Several of the concerns SAF identified in the Proposed Rule include a lack of clarity on management objectives, lack of discussion on the impacts of the mountain pine beetle outbreak in Colorado, a misguided emphasis on only cutting small-diameter trees, and the high-level management approval that is needed for activities. The final comment letter was submitted to the US Forest Service during the 90 day public comment period that ended July 14, 2011.To read the submitted comments link to: http://www.eforester.org/fp/documents/proposedcoloradoroadlessrule.pdf

  2. SAF Members Nominated for EPA Greenhouse Gas Advisory Panel-Submit Your Letter of Support

    The EPA Science Advisory Board (SAB) Staff Office is forming a panel to advise the EPA on draft greenhouse gas accounting methodology for biogenic carbon dioxide emissions from stationary sources.

    The SAB Staff Office has identified a "short list" of nominees that includes the names of 22 SAF members. Please submit comments of support for SAF's members on the list to Holly Stallworth (stallworth.holly@epa.gov) designated federal officer, no later than July 15. To view the "short list" of nominees link to: http://www.safnet.org/documents/SAF_members_on_EPA_SAB_panel.pdf.

    In creating the panel, the SAB Staff Office seeks a balanced committee with members who possess the scientific expertise, experience, and perspective necessary to provide impartial input as the EPA reviews the relevant science and research to craft the new guidelines for biogenic carbon dioxide emissions from stationary sources.

    To read brief biographical sketches of the 82 nominees and more information about the SAB panel link to: http://yosemite.epa.gov/sab/sabproduct.nsf/WebProjectsRequestsforCommentsBOARD/2F9B572C712AC52E8525783100704886/$File/Invitation%20for%20Comment%20on%20Short%20List%20with%20Biosketches%206-24-11.pdf

In the Administration

  1. Final Public Comment Period Comes to a Close for the Colorado Roadless Rule
      U.S. Forest Service Press Release, July 14th

    Today is the final day for public comments on the proposed Colorado Roadless Rule and revised Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS). During the 90-day comment period, the U.S. Forest Service and Colorado Department of Natural Resources engaged with interested citizens during nine public meetings in eight Colorado communities and Washington D.C., to listen to comments and answer questions about the proposed management of Colorado's National Forest roadless areas. To read more of this article link to: http://www.fs.fed.us/news/2011/releases.shtml

This Week in Congress

  1. "Federal Forest Policy Must be Proactive, Solutions Oriented, and Fiscally Sustainable"
      Congressman Paul Gosar, July 8th

    This year, our communities have been victims of the largest forest fires in recorded history. The Wallow Fire on the Apache-Sitgreaves Forest grew to over half a million acres, charring in its wake some of the most treasured parts of Ponderosa Pine country. To read more of this article link to: http://gosar.house.gov/press-release/weekly-column-congressman-gosar-%E2%80%9Cfederal-forest-policy-must-be-proactive-solutions

  2. July 11th - Senator Jon Kyl [R-Az] introduced S. 1344: A bill to direct the Secretary of Agriculture to take immediate action to recover ecologically and economically from a catastrophic wildfire in the state of Arizona, and for other purposes. To read more about this bill link to: http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=s112-1344

  3. Fiscal Year 2012 Interior and Environment Bill Approved by Appropriations Committee
      House Committee on Appropriations Press Release, July 12th

    The House Appropriations Committee today approved the Fiscal Year 2012 Interior and Environment Appropriations bill. The legislation includes annual funding for the Department of the Interior, the Environment Protection Agency (EPA), the Forest Service, and various independent and related agencies. To read more of this article link to: http://appropriations.house.gov/News/DocumentSingle.aspx?DocumentID=251469

  4. July 13th - Rep. Donald Young [R-AK] introduced H.R. 2526 to exempt National Forest System Lands in Alaska from the Roadless Area Conservation Rule. To read more about this bill link to: http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=h112-2526

  5. July 13th - Senator Mark Begich [D-AK] introduced S. 1357 to exempt National Forest System Land in the State of Alaska from the Roadless Area Conservation Rule. To read more about this bill link to: http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=s112-1357

  6. July 14th - House Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests, and Public Lands held an oversight hearing on "Secure Rural Schools Reauthorization and Forest Management Options for a Viable County Payments Program. To read more about this hearing link to: http://naturalresources.house.gov/Calendar/EventSingle.aspx?EventID=249959

National News

  1. Wood Products Part of Winning Carbon-Emissions Equation, Researchers Say
      EurekAlert! Press Release, July 14th

    Trees absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere to grow, so forests have long been proposed as a way to offset climate change. But rather than just letting the forest sit there for a hundred or more years, the amount of carbon dioxide taken out of the atmosphere could be quadrupled in 100 years by harvesting regularly and using the wood in place of steel and concrete that devour fossil fuels during manufacturing, producing carbon dioxide. To read more of this article link to: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2011-07/uow-wpp071411.php

In the States: Georgia and Alaska

  1. Now is the Time to Salvage Fire-Damaged Timber
      The Post Search-Light, Published by Wendy Burnett, July 11th

    Georgia landowners whose timber was burned in recent wildfires are being urged to act quickly for the best salvage opportunities."There's no time to waste if you're trying to recoup what value is left in your forestland and prevent complete loss," said James Johnson, chief of forest management for the Georgia Forestry Commission. "Charred trees deteriorate rapidly, but with guidance from a registered forester, landowners can still harvest trees and get usable wood to the mills in time for it to be utilized." To read more of this article link to: http://www.thepostsearchlight.com/2011/07/11/now-is-the-time-to-salvage-fire-damaged-timber/

  2. Alaska Delegation seeks Roadless Rule repeal in Tongass, Chugach
      Juneau Empire, Published by John R. Moses, July 13th
    The Alaska Congressional Delegation drew praise from a timber industry group and Sealaska Corp. for leading the charge against application of the federal 2001 Roadless Rule in Alaska's national forests. Environmental groups, however, were less enthused. Democratic Sen. Mark Begich and Republican Rep. Don Young this week introduced legislation to repeal the rule in Alaska's national forests. Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski co-sponsored the Senate measure. To read more of this article link to: http://juneauempire.com/state/2011-07-13/alaska-delegation-seeks-roadless-rule-repeal-tongasschugach

Last Week in Congress

  1. Udall Calls for Action to Help Colorado's Forest-Management Economy, Save Jobs at 3 Sawmills
      Press Release, July 5th

    Today, Mark Udall sent a letter urging the U.S. Forest Service and the U.S. Department of Agriculture to take immediate action to help three of Colorado's largest sawmills stay afloat and keep rural jobs in the state. Udall suggested that the USFS and the USDA rework timber sale contracts with the sawmills, which are struggling financially. To read more of this article link to: http://markudall.senate.gov/?p=press_release&id=1201

  2. Appropriations Committee Releases the Fiscal Year 2012 Interior-Environment Appropriations Bill
      House Appropriations Committee Press Release, July 6th

    The House Appropriations Committee today released the fiscal year 2012 Interior and Environment Appropriations bill which will be considered in subcommittee tomorrow. The legislation includes funding for the Department of the Interior, the Environment Protection Agency (EPA), the Forest Service, and various independent and related agencies. To read more of this article link to: http://appropriations.house.gov/news/DocumentSingle.aspx?DocumentID=250003

  3. July 7th - U.S. House Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior, Environment and Related Agencies held a full committee mark up hearing for fiscal year 2012 appropriations. To read more about this hearing link to: http://appropriations.house.gov/Calendar/EventSingle.aspx?EventID=249603

  4. Agriculture Subcommittee Continues Farm Policy Audit with Hearing on Conservation Programs
      House Committee on Agriculture Press Release, July 7th

    Today, Rep. Glenn 'GT' Thompson, Chairman of the House Agriculture Committee's Subcommittee on Conservation, Energy, and Forestry, continued the audit hearings on farm policy, which is the first step in the farm bill process. Each chairman of the six subcommittees will hold hearings to examine programs in their respective jurisdictions to determine spending trends and confirm how programs work together. To read more of this article link to: http://agriculture.house.gov/press/PRArticle.aspx?NewsID=1416

Wildfire Update

  1. Wallow Fire 100 Percent Contained
      AZfamily.com, July 10th

    The Wallow Fire was declared 100 percent contained as of 6 p.m., Friday, July 8. Fire resources will be released over the next several days and local Forest Service fire resources will continue monitoring the area, according to Forest Service officials. Officials from the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests (ASNF) offered their thanks to fire fighters, local, state, and federal agencies and the community for their support during Arizona's largest recorded wildfire, which began on May 29. To read more of this article link to: http://www.azfamily.com/news/Wallow-Fire-100-percent-contained-125284338.html

  2. Massive "Bearing" Fire Continues Burning
      KTRE.com, Published by Holly Nees, July 12th

    Firefighters are still having trouble controlling the largest fire in East Texas history. The 20,22-acre "Bearing" Wildfire has been burning inside the containment lines, but Monday the fire escaped the lines creating new, small fires. Fire officials said all of the new fires have been contained, but inside the massive blaze, land continues to burn. To read more about this article link to: http://www.ktre.com/story/15070544/massive-bearing-fire-continues-burning

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