Ninth Circuit Court failed to recognize industry's effective control of runoff from forest roads in 2010 ruling, says American Forest Resource Council president, praises U.S. Supreme Court's decision to review ruling

LOS ANGELES , June 28, 2012 () –

The American Forest Resource Council (AFRC) has joined other industry groups in praising the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to review a lower court’s ruling to further regulate water runoff from forest roads, the Redding Record Searchlight on June 27.

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals 2010 ruling failed to recognize that the industry has been “very effective in controlling runoff from our forest roads,” said Tom Partin, president of the Portland, Oregon-based AFRC, which represents forest product manufacturers and landowners in the West.

The lower-court’s decision to require National Pollutant Discharge Eliminate System permits for forest roads would not improve water quality while creating more paperwork and the potential for litigation, said Partin.

“Water flowing from our forests is high quality,” he said, the Redding Record Searchlight reported.

Requiring NPDES permits would create uncertainty, as well adding time and costs for timber companies preparing their logging plans, said Arne Hultgren, California resources manager for Roseburg Forest Products Co.

This would completely change the industry’s regulations, which are now adequate, he said.

California already regulates runoff from forest roads in a process that takes about 18 months of planning and review by state and local agencies, said Hultgren, reported the Redding Record Searchlight.

The Roseburg, Oregon-based company owns about 174,000 acres of timberland in Northern California with about 1,600 miles of seasonal roads and 99 miles of permanent roads, he said.

Roseburg and Anderson, California-based Sierra Pacific Industries both belong to the AFRC and support the Supreme Court’s review of the case, the Redding Record Searchlight reported.

The primary source of this article is the Redding Record Searchlight, Redding, California, on June 27, 2012.

 

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