Read forestry items carefully
The Oct. 16 article about the O&C Lands Forum held Oct. 15 at the Douglas County Museum was biased reporting, in my opinion.
The headline alone is misleading. I do not think there was one person there who “objects to logging.” What I and others object to is U.S. Rep. Peter DeFazio’s bill to move 1.67 million acres of public land into a trust potentially to be dominated by timber interests.
I am also opposed to the direction Senator Wyden’s bill seems to be taking. The Senator’s statements indicate the bill will mandate increased volume using clear cut logging techniques similar to the Buck Fork Timber Sale.
Economically, these laws benefit the few. The hidden costs for the rest of us are high, affecting our water, our food, and our quality of life. Without these public lands, native forests and their benefits to the common good are all but gone.
The clear-cutting, lack of stream buffers and short turn-around time (40 to 50 years) on private industrial timberlands is detrimental to our air and water quality and reduces the amount of water available downstream for farms and homes. These practices also degrade salmon-bearing streams and make our area less inviting to tourism and the dollars this can bring.
The Oregon Forest Practices Act is the weakest forest protection in the Pacific Northwest. The tax structure in Douglas County is a disgrace.
The value of large trees is far greater than the board feet they contain. Carbon sequestration alone is so invaluable, we should not be cutting any mature forests. The mono-cropped, single-age tree plantations are a fire waiting to happen. The soil cannot support the current level of rotation because there is insufficient time to allow tilth to build and enrich the soil.