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E-M:/ Maine secures huge forest easement

Enviro-Mich message from Smileysmlc@aol.com

Many states are taking a leadership role in protecting their economic and 
natural resource base, yet Michigan lags far behind in just about all land 
use issues.  Here's a release which was forwarded to me.  This could easily 
happen in Michigan if we could just find the political will to care about the 
Jack Smiley
Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy


AUGUSTA, Maine, April 28, 2000 (ENS) - A 20,268 acre
conservation easement, the largest in state history,
was unveiled this week in Maine. Governor Angus King
announced the purchase of the easement around Nicatous
Lake and West Lake by the Maine Department of
Conservation. It will guarantee public access to the
land, protect wildlife habitat including three bald
eagle nesting sites, and ensure responsible forest
management. Supporters called the easement an
excellent approach to meeting both the long term
forest management goals of the landowners, Robbins
Lumber and Champion International, as well as the
public's desire for traditional access for hiking,
boating, camping, hunting and fishing. 

"By day's end, three bald eagle nesting sites, 34
miles of shoreline, seven remote ponds, and 20,000
acres of land will be protected forever," said
Governor King. "In my book, that makes today a red
letter day for Maine's environment." The Trust for
Public Land, the Forest Society of Maine, and Maine
Coast Heritage Trust pooled their skills and resources
to bring the project to fruition. The easement will
allow continued sustainable timber harvesting.
"Easements are important for wildlife and public
recreation and are an integral part of Maine's working
forest," said Jenness Robbins, president of Robbins
Lumber. "We believe in a balance between ecology and
economics. While our primary objective on the Nicatous
and West Lakes property will continue to be timber
growing and timber harvesting, traditional use of the
land will also continue, biological resources will be
protected, and Robbins Lumber will pay all local and
state property taxes."

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