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Case History

It’s been more than 30 years since EPIC first entered the courtroom to

challenge the degradation of public lands and the government’s failure to

enforce environmental laws. Since that time, we have filed more than 70

lawsuits on behalf of the native species and wildlands of Northern

California. The Journal of Forestry reports that EPIC had the highest

success rate in court among “parties opposing the U.S. Forest Service…

from 1989 to 2005.” During that time, EPIC won approximately 65 percent

of its cases, a staggering rate of success when compared to similar


EPIC’s litigation has protected old-growth-dependent wildlife from the

cumulative loss of coast redwood and Douglas fir forest habitat. Most of our

cases involve private forestlands in our region, the North Coast of California,

but many have affected statewide forestry policy and have set both state

and national legal precedents. Of particular importance are EPIC v.

Johnson #1, Sierra Club and EPIC v. Board of Forestry #5, and Marbled

Murrelet and EPIC v. Pacific Lumber #18. EPIC’s litigation has challenged

corporate timber practices and negligent governmental oversight, leading to

temporary protection of the largest remaining groves of ancient redwoods, stronger implementation of environmental regulations, and reform of forestry policy.

We have filed 15 lawsuits involving the ancient and residual old-growth groves of Headwaters Forest, and we moved to intervene in Pacific Lumber’s private property rights lawsuit against the United States of America. Many of our cases have been filed with the Sierra Club, individuals, or watershed groups as co-plaintiffs. We have joined six coalition lawsuits, with dozens of fisheries and environmental groups, to seek the listing and protection of endangered anadromous fish species under federal and state Endangered Species Acts. We believe success is measured in the outcome and influence of our efforts.


Greg King self portrait: practice climb 1998

©2016 Greg King

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