A new short film and ten thousand acres of logging

Dear Barker,

Be one of the first to see Bark’s new short film! In 12 minutes it will walk you through the Clackamas River watershed and the controversial Jazz Timber Sale. This 2,000-acre logging project is just one of a half-dozen sales in the Clackamas River Ranger District of Mt. Hood National Forest totaling more than 10,000 acres. The Forest Service calls it “restoration.” We call it the Big Clack Cut. Watch the video, produced by Bark volunteer Corrinne Theodoru, and see which you think it is.

Alex P Brown, Executive Director

PS – Check out our Bark Tales and Bark Bites, below, to register for upcoming NEPA 101 and Groundtruthing Trainings.

Bark-Out: U.S. Senator Ron Wyden attacks the Clean Water Act
Bark-About: Visit the Fish Creek Watershed to see the effects of logging on public land
Giving Tree: Volunteers needed for the Bark Mural Project!
Bark Tales: Bark catches the Forest Service pink-handed
Bark Bites: Is the Forest Service using a loophole to sell off old growth?

Senator Ron Wyden and Representative Kurt Schrader are trying to trade our clean water for timber -- take action today!

Senator Wyden and Rep. Schrader announced last week that they are sponsoring legislation to exempt logging roads from the Clean Water Act. A U.S. court recently found that the timber industry should be held to the same standard for pollution runoff from logging roads that other industries have been held to for decades. Instead of seeking ways to comply and protect our rivers, the industry hired Senator Wyden’s former chief-of-staff to lobby for an exemption.

If Congress exempts the timber industry from the Clean Water Act, impacts to fish habitat and drinking water quality from massive logging projects like the Big Clack Cut will not be monitored. Why does the current law not stop the pollution from happening? And why would Wyden be against monitoring pollution? Click here to learn why and to take critical action to protect our rivers today!

Logging impacts in the Fish Creek Watershed
Sunday, August 14th, 9am-5pm

Join long time Barker, Matt Mavko, for a hike to the Fish Creek Watershed in Mt. Hood NationalForest to see the effects of recent logging on our public lands. We continuously hear the term 'restoration' applied to logging, and on this hike we'll gauge the accuracy of that claim. We'll also visit some intact forest so we can compare for ourselves. With 10,000 acres of planned and active logging in the Clackamas River Ranger District, understanding the impacts of logging and the truth about ‘restoration’ logging is more critical than ever.

Come prepared to walk up to three miles on this month's hike, with moderate elevation gain. Please bring lunch, water, and sturdy boots. The weather is very unpredictable this time of year, so please be prepared for sun and rain.

Bark-Abouts are led on the second Sunday of every month and are free to the public. Click here for more information about this month’s hike.

Giving Tree
Help Bark and artist Robin Corbo realize our vision for a Bark Mural Project in Portland – your dollars and volunteer hours are needed!

SE Powell Blvd and 44th Ave. will be the location of Portland’s newest mural featuring, you guessed it, Mt. Hood and Bark! Robin Corbo, local muralist known for her Community Cycling Center and “Women Making History” murals, has chosen Bark for her next project and we are thrilled!

Work is set to begin on the mural in just two weeks and Robin needs 50 volunteers to help with everything from drawing the outline to painting the background of the scene. Artists and non-artists are needed (no experience necessary), so please email barkmural@gmail.com today and sign up!

Do you support creative strategies for educating and activating the public to protect our environment? Then please make a donation to Bark today!

Bark Tales
Bark’s Forest Watch Committee member Paula Hood catches a timber company mismarking trees to log in Mt. Hood National Forest

When Bark volunteer Paula Hood began inventorying snags (standing dead trees that offer critical habitat) as a part of a monitoring program that resulted from Bark’s challenge to the Wildcat Timber Sale, she assumed it would be pretty straight forward.

It turns out that the logging markings -- done by the timber company with a Forest Service contract administrator overseeing it -- were different than what was presented to the public in the timber sale’s NEPA documents! What’s NEPA?

Thanks to three full days of boots-on-the-ground work and photo documentation by Paula, and cooperation from the Forest Service Zigzag District Ranger, the markings were changed and the Wildcat Timber Sale will now move forward without major discrepancies from what was planned and portrayed to the public. However, this experience raises an important concern: If the Forest Service cannot guarantee correct implementation of a 70-acre timber sale, how can we trust it to oversee 10,000 acres of the Big Clack Cut in the Clackamas River watershed?

You can learn the skills that helped Paula and Bark save these trees by joining us for our next Groundtruthing Training.

Bark Bites
How does a landslide in Mt. Hood National Forest result in selling old-growth western red cedar without any public input?

In early July a landslide in the Clackamas River Ranger District brought down several old-growthcedars and blocked a logging road (Rd 6330). The Forest Service wanted to quickly re-open the road to create timber company access to one of the Big Clack Cut timber sales, so it used a “Categorical Exclusion” for the road clearing project. A Categorical Exclusion is a clause in NEPA that allows the Forest Service to pursue ground-disturbing activities without public input or participation.

This Categorical Exclusion resulted in the selling off of rare old-growth cedars to a lumber mill at an alarmingly low cost, rather than retaining the logs for restoration work in rivers and streams in Mt. Hood where they could generate critical fish habitat. Here is yet another example of the Forest Service excluding public participation to benefit the timber industry with a decision that loses natural resources and financial profit for Mt. Hood.

To learn about the legal mechanisms that allow the Forest Service to exclude the public from Categorical Exclusion decisions, join us for our upcoming NEPA 101 training.