The 9th Circuit issues injunction on clearcutting project

Grizzly Bears On October 22, 2013 the 9th Circuit temporarily blocked a logging project in the Kootenai National Forest in Montana. The project calls for clear cutting 378 acres and thinning or burning 2,140 acres of forest. The Alliance for the Wild Rockies requested an emergency injunction in response to previous ruling by U.S. District Judge Donald Molloy that the project could move ahead. It is only a two week injunction, but it will halt any building of roads or logging until the appeal to the previous ruling is heard.

The Kootenai National Forest houses about 40 grizzly bears whose population is currently declining. The U.S. Forest Service says the project is supposed to improve the forest’s health thereby improving the bear’s habitat. Read full article here.

Although I would like to trust the U.S. Forest Service and I am not an expert, it doesn’t make sense to me that clear cutting 378 acres of forest contributes to the forest’s health. According to the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) clearcutting is an “ecological trauma” that does not naturally occur and can destroy the local ecology. So, U.S. Forest Service, please give a better answer.