February 6, 2009
Contact: Aaron Toso, 360-902-1023, firstname.lastname@example.org
DNR Addresses Boy Scout Logging Issue Raised by Newspaper Report
Agency working to ensure forest practices are clear and sustainable
OLYMPIA – Immediately following initial reports of concerns about logging practices on Boy Scout forestlands by the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, the Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) collected information to appropriately review the issue in a larger context of how forest practice rules are applied in the field.
After the newspaper’s initial report, DNR asked its staff to collect and review existing information on the Delezenne Boy Scout Camp timber harvest near Elma. This week, a DNR senior specialist on channel migration zone (CMZ) delineation went to the logging site to evaluate the stream in question. The specialist’s report substantiates the actions taken at the site.
Next week, DNR will take the next step in its review of how forest practices rules were applied in the field. Three experts in forest practices are scheduled to visit the site of the Delezenne Boy Scout Camp timber harvest. The three are: Chris Mendoza, the consultant whose work was part of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer report; Charles Chesney, a DNR forest practice science team member who is a hydrologist and CMZ expert; and Marc Engel, the acting assistant manager for policy and services in DNR’s Forest Practices Division, who also is responsible for updating the Forest Practices Board’s manual.
“When intelligent and well-respected people look at the same site and see two different things, it tells me that this is an issue that needs to be addressed,” said Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark. “This review isn’t about who is right or wrong; it is about making sure that forest practice rules are clear, fair, and applied uniformly across the state for all landowners. I want to thank Chris Mendoza for his willingness to work with us on addressing this issue.”
Sustainability is a priority
When Commissioner Goldmark took office, he laid out three principles that will guide decisions made at DNR under his leadership. Those include: sustainable management of our natural resources, conduct our work in the public’s interest with the public’s knowledge; and ensure sound and credible science is guiding all of our actions.
DNR – Managing and protecting your natural resources
DNR manages more than 5.6 million acres of state-owned forest, range, commercial, agricultural, conservation, and aquatic lands. More than half of these lands are held in trust and produce income to support public schools, universities, prisons, and other state institutions. Lands managed by DNR provide other public benefits as well, including outdoor recreation, native fish and wildlife habitat, and clean and abundant water.
Along with these other roles, the department regulates surface mining reclamation and forest debris burning, administers the state Forest Practices rules on private and state-owned forest lands, and provides wildfire protection for 12.7 million acres of tribal, private, and state-owned forests. DNR offers technical assistance and education on a range of subjects, including forest stewardship, mining, geologic hazards, and rare plant species and ecosystems.
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