Loggers Get the OK to Kill Endangered Spotted Owls

The Endangered Species Act exists to protect biodiversity. It can only work when species listed as endangered are actually afforded the protections guaranteed to them in the Act. Unfortunately these days, even earning classification as an endangered species doesn’t always mean safety from harm.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service approved a plan that would allow Fruit Growers Supply Co. accelerate logging of occupied spotted owl habitat in California’s old growth forests.

The plan to raze trees that have been growing for hundreds of years is appalling enough, but the agencies also granted the company permission to ”take,” that is, harm or kill, more than 80 northern spotted owls living in those woods. This is nearly 50 percent of the total spotted owl population believed to reside in the area.

Owls of all types are vital to forest ecosystems, as they feed on rodents typically considered vermin. “Like its cousins the Mexican and northern spotted owls, the California spotted owl is a bellwether of old-growth forests,” explains The Center for Biological Diversity (CBD). This owl’s classic four-note call was once commonly heard throughout the big trees of the Sierra Nevada and Southern California ranges, but logging, sprawl, and invasion by the barred owl…are silencing it.”

CBD is just one of three environmental organizations who filed a lawsuit [pdf] against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service for approving the logging plan last week.

“Fruit Growers’ 50-year plan targets endangered species and the forests that sustain them in the first 10 years in exchange for 40 years of empty promises to do good after the habitat and the species are gone,” said George Sexton, conversation director of the Klamath-Siskiyou Wildlands Center, in a press release. “The plan fails rare species and is a big step backwards for healthy forests and rivers in Northern California.”

Under certain circumstances, companies have been granted permission to violate the Endangered Species Act when ”the plan limits that harm as much as possible and includes concrete and certain measures that provide additional protections for listed species.”

According to the organizations who’ve filed suit, the Fruit Growers’ plan calls for 10 years of total forest liquidation, and “the promises for long-term habitat protections after the forests are logged…are either vague or non-binding, and in no way solve the problems the logging would create.”

“The math on this plan simply doesn’t add up. Old-growth forests that take hundreds of years to grow can’t be replaced in 50 years,” said Tim Ream, an attorney at the Center for Biological Diversity, in the same release. “These irreplaceable Northern California forests and the wildlife that lives in them need to be preserved, not sold off for vague promises of improvements that may never happen.”

 

Image via Thinkstock

224 comments

Jim Ven
Jim Ven8 months ago

thanks for the article.

Mark Donner
Mark Donner2 years ago

The "Fish and Wildlife Services" has prove it is basically a extremist and criminal organization masquerading as a government "Service". Any one who works in this depraved gang, which is dead set on destroying the last remaining wildlands and wildlfie, is by definition a hard core criminal and should be treated as such.

Carrie-Anne Brown

sad news but thanks for sharing

Lorraine Andersen

thanks for posting, seems the almighty dollar wins as always.

'Great White' Earth & Bei
'Great White' 2 years ago

Re-posting again, cannot find the original post, strange how this happens from time to time, and NOT on other websites I post to.

Marilyn J. L.,

I could point out all The Capitalist owned and controlled media and other devices (including public media that uses commercial funding to survive- Private Funds and even commercials) to brainwash you (you are NOT the only one); but it is a lot more than just all that, it is also that you did not critically examine enough to understand (as a many years of being a degreed and certified, still NOT sociologically ready- former Substitute Facilitator, facilitator and positional FootBall Coach, yet year of the best and most popular private Sylvan Head Tutor at the center, this has been a long term affect and it continues through USA destroying Education for Capitalist Corporations benefits ), that ‘The Compromising Capitalist’ President Obama was really preaching (proper term for USA Campaigning and politics with religious requirements) or just accepted that that only way TRUE CHANGE is through The Capitalist controlled limitations, The Capitalist controlled defining of change and through The Capitalist controlled stages.

'Great White' Earth & Bei
'Great White' 2 years ago

Marilyn J. L.,

Maybe, it was because The Capitalist owned and controlled media and other devices brainwashing focused on first-Black USA President (though The First Woman President- really NOT important, what is important is WHAT LEADERS MINDS SETS ARE & WHAT THEY TRULY BELIEVE & PRACTICE) & The Candidates for USA President that are not brainwashed to us (through The Capitalist owned and controlled media and other devices ) are NOT electable. I figured out ‘The compromising Capitalist’ Presidential Candidate from his first speech as ‘The compromising Capitalist’ that he is and thus, first-voted for Dennis Kucinich (had to go to court to be in a presidential debate) and I cannot remember what Dennis Kucinish’s choice for Vice President was (did research through The Internet and do not trust what The Internet told me) and second-voted for Jill Stein and Cheri Honkala (wanted Dennis Kucinich to vote for again).

'Great White' Earth & Bei
'Great White' 2 years ago

Marilyn J. L.,

I could point out all The Capitalist owned and controlled media and other devices (including public media that uses commercial funding to survive- Private Funds and even commercials) to brainwash you (you are NOT the only one); but it is a lot more than just all that, it is also that you did not critically examine enough to understand (as a many years of being a degreed and certified, still NOT sociologically ready- former Substitute Facilitator, facilitator and positional FootBall Coach, yet year of the best and most popular private Sylvan Head Tutor at the center, this has been a long term affect and it continues through USA destroying Education for Capitalist Corporations benefits ), that ‘The Compromising Capitalist’ President Obama was really preaching (proper term for USA Campaigning and politics with religious requirements) or just accepted that that only way TRUE CHANGE is through The Capitalist controlled limitations, The Capitalist controlled defining of change and through The Capitalist controlled stages. Maybe, it was because The Capitalist owned and controlled media and other devices brainwashing focused on first-Black USA President (though The First Woman President- really NOT important, what is important is WHAT LEADERS MINDS SETS ARE & WHAT THEY TRULY BELIEVE & PRACTICE) & The Candidates for USA President that are not brainwashed to us (through The Capitalist owned and controlled media and othe

Marilyn J. L.
Marilyn J L.2 years ago

Somebody remind me why I fought so hard for this administration.
OK. I suppose it could have been worse under the opposition, but it certainly hasn't gotten significantly better since Bush

Frustration, frustration, frustration.

Christian Rocklein
c Rocklein2 years ago

"U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service?" .... who pays the salary of these “Services"? Who are they "serving"?

Should change their name to "Fruit Growers Service".

Richard Hancock
Richard Hancock2 years ago

Why not grow fruit elsewhere?