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Mature And Old-Growth Forests Are Worth More Standing: Save Climate Forests On The Chopping Block!

While the White House has made protecting mature and old-growth forests a priority, federal agencies have been clear that they prefer to prioritize logging over our climate. Rather than protecting our forests that store massive amounts of carbon and provide critical habitat for endangered wildlife, the Forest Service is denying the magnitude of logging already happening while making excuses to cut them down at an even faster rate.

The Forest Service claims that a majority of our mature and old-growth forests on federal lands are already in a protected status, but this is demonstrably false. EPIC and our allies across the country in the Climate Forests campaign can point to thousands of acres at risk right now of being logged, including roughly 2,000 acres of commercial logging within Eddy Gulch Late Successional Reserve in the Klamath National Forest. This project would permanently remove 923 acres of northern spotted owl (NSO) habitat in some of the only unburned forest stands in the region, home to one of the only reproductive pairs in the entire Klamath National Forest.

Our report highlights 10 threatened forests on federal lands at risk of being devastated by logging, despite their extraordinary benefits of carbon sequestration and reducing the long-term impacts of climate change. The new report, “Worth More Standing,” details logging proposals affecting nearly a quarter of a million acres of federal forests overseen by the U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management. These forests are on the verge of becoming old-growth, and projects like these would mean that they are reduced to stumps. We cannot allow this to happen on our watch.

Please join us in calling on President Biden, Secretary Vilsack, and Secretary Haaland, to incorporate permanent protections for mature and old growth temperate rainforests as part of our nation’s strategy to address climate change.


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