The Olympic Peninsula is home to important state-owned forests and many of our state’s most iconic creatures. To keep these forest ecosystems healthy, WEC and our partners at Conservation Northwest and Olympic Forest Coalition challenged the state’s logging plan for these forests.
We reached a legal settlement that required the state to do as much forest thinning as they did clearcutting, in order to put dense, second-growth forests on a trajectory to provide better wildlife habitat.
The state had struggled to keep achieve this balance, so WEC and our partners pressed them to deliver on their commitment. After over a year of discussions, DNR agreed to a better approach that will benefit our forests.
This new approach means that the state will hire additional foresters and create an action plan to achieve more thinning and less clearcutting. They also agreed to improve habitat conditions on more than 3,000 acres of plantations, and protect 200 acres of owl habitat.
Washington’s forests are an essential ingredient to a healthy Washington: providing wildlife habitat, helping keep our water clean, and combating climate change. We will continue working with our partners and DNR to ensure the health of our state forests.
A big thank you to Brian Gruber of Ziontz, Chestnut, Varnell, Berley & Slonim for his pro-bono legal support.