CORVALLIS — Oregon State University has announced plans to immediately reinstitute an abandoned 2005 management plan for its McDonald-Dunn research forest outside Corvallis, in a sign of continued fallout from criticism of the school for clearcutting a stand of ancient trees that included a 420-year-old giant.

The Oregonian/OregonLive reports the leader of the university’s college of forestry also said he would add 36 acres of nearby old growth to protected reserves. Those trees were going to be cut until the furor erupted this summer over the old-growth clearcut, a 16-acre harvest known as the No Vacancy cut.

The university had already temporarily paused logging of trees older than 160 years.

In his Monday letter to the forestry school’s community, Anthony Davis, the interim dean, said the college’s decision-making around management of the McDonald-Dunn “has impaired our ability to lead by example, something that is a reasonable expectation of us, and we should expect of ourselves.”

“We cannot go back to change the past, but we can choose our path forward,” Davis wrote.

His letter comes just more than a month before top state leaders are scheduled to discuss what role Oregon State’s forestry school should have in controlling the 82,500-acre Elliott State Forest, a transfer that would quintuple Oregon State’s forest holdings.

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