|Posted by nationalforestlawblog on June 30, 2011 at 3:41 PM|
The court rejected environmental groups' lawsuit over the Forest Service's thinning plan for Umatilla National Forest in Oregon. The League of Wilderness Defenders-Blue Mountains Biodiversity Project and the Sierra Club say the Wildcat Fuels Reduction and Vegetation Management Project was approved after a deficient environmental assessment. The groups were critical of the project near/within/around a so-called pristine (garden of eden-paradisal) roadless expanse. The case was originally filed in August of 2009. Judge Brown, a Clinton-appointee rejected the appeal, writing:
On this record the Court agrees the Forest Service is entitled to deference and, therefore, the Court defers to the Forest Service’s technical expertise and its scientists. Accordingly, the Court adopts the Forest Service’s conclusion that the impact of the proposed Timber Sale on roadless expanses in the Forest would not be significant and would not substantially affect the quality of the human environment. See Found. for N. Am. Wild Sheep, 681 F.2d 1172, 1178 (9th Cir. 1982).
You can access the full text opinion here.