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E-M:/ Important MI National Forest Planning Meetings In November



To: Interested Parties
From: Marvin Roberson, Sierra Club Mackinac Chapter Forest Policy Specialist
Re: National Forest Plan Revision in Michigan


As you may be aware, the three National Forests in Michigan are about to begin the process of revising their National Forest Plans. These plans guide the overall management of the forests, including timber harvest, old growth, recreation issues, wildlife, etc. for up to 15 years after completion (the last Plans were completed in 1986).

The Huron-Manistee will begin the public input process first, with a round of public meetings in November.

IT IS ESSENTIAL THAT INTERESTED PARTIES ATTEND THESE MEETINGS!

The current status is that the Huron-Manistee is looking to decide which issues they will address in the new Plan. In many cases, they are attempting to limit which issues will be addressed, which means that no change from the current Plan will be allowed. It is very important that interested folks get to these meetings and let the Forest know what issues they care about, and that they expect all important issues to be addressed. It is essential that they hear that precluding discussion or consideration of any issue at this early date is unacceptable.

Below are some of the descriptions of issues the Forest plans on addressing, or not:

OLD GROWTH:

The Forest claims to have determined that Old-Growth amounts will not change. THEY NEED TO HEAR THAT THIS IS NOT GOOD ENOUGH. The stated reason for not changing Old-Growth amounts is that they do not know whether the current amount is enough, so why change? It is important that they hear that they need to find out how much is enough, not simply forget about it.

ASPEN:

Currently, aspen on the forest makes up about 10 times what natural levels would produce, at the expense of older species like white pine and northern hardwoods. The clear indication in the information sent out is that the forest plans on keeping or increasing this amount of aspen. They need to hear that a full analysis of the impacts of large amounts of aspen are, and that an option for seriously decreasing aspen amounts must be considered.

TIMBER:

The expectation from the forest is to "evaluate" how much timber they can sell. They need to hear that this evaluation must include analysis of how much money other uses, primarily recreation, bring into the forest and surrounding communities, as well as the ecological sustainability of the current timber program.

RECREATION/ROADS:

The proposal seems to be to reduce road densities, which is very much needed. They need to hear this.

MEETING DATES AND TIMES - ALL MEETINGS 6-10PM

Please note - if you live downstate especially, please plan on attending one of the downstate meetings. We strongly requested that these be held in order to give folks from these areas an opportunity to participate, and we'd like to see them well attended.

NOVEMBER 6

BALDWIN - Pleasant Plains Twp. Hall

WELLSTON - Chittendon Environmental Center, M-55

GRAND RAPIDS - Ladies Literary Club, 61 Sheldon Blvd.

NOVEMBER 7

CADILLAC - Bill Olivers's Best Western, M-55

MIO - Mio Community Center

HURON SHORES - Oscoda Library

NOVEMBER 12

DEARBORN - UM Dearborn Environmental Interpretive Center, School of Mgmt. Lecture Hall B

NOVEMBER 12

EAST LANSING - MSU Natural Resources Bldg. Room 221



If you have any questions, please contact me at the address/email below.

Marvin Roberson






"Do Not Be Amazed By The True Dragon" - Dogen Zenji, Fukanzazenji



Marvin Roberson
Sierra Club
Lorax Associates
318 West Second Street #203
Flint, MI 48502

810.424.3575