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Old-growth comment form for the forest plan

“Trees in old-growth are large and tall. Their lifespans exceed that of humans by centuries, so they serve as symbols of immortality. They embody the realms of the earth and spirit, because they are rooted deep in the earth and are so tall they touch the heavens. …Old growth opens a door to different experiences of space and time.”

– Robert G. Lee, author and scholar

Friends of the Clearwater asks you to demand the U.S. Forest Service protect—not log—our remaining old-growth forests.

“Old growth” is a refuge from our increasingly “managed” and commercialized forests. It also provides an important habit niche for many rare and imperiled wildlife species such as fisher, pine marten, northern goshawk, pileated woodpecker, white-headed woodpecker, wolverine, and Canada lynx.

Dawna and Ashley near an old cedar

The Forest Service’s 2019 draft Revised Forest Plan (draft RFP) for the Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests authorizes logging of most of our old growth on in the coming years. The extent of old growth on the Nez Perce-Clearwater is already far below the historic norm, due to wide-scale clearcutting over the past century.

The draft RFP deems much old growth to be “undesirable” since “these forest types are over-represented compared with historic conditions.” As a result, the Forest Service directs the clearcutting of thousands of centuries-old trees from the Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests. And the draft RFP even directs the logging of “desirable” old growth, removing large old trees while still calling it “old growth.”

The Forest Service also has not monitored populations of the old-growth associated species selected for monitoring in the 1987 Forest Plans, so the agency does not know how its management has affected population trends. Wildlife species depending upon old-growth habitat conditions include fisher, pine marten, northern goshawk, pileated woodpecker, white-headed woodpecker, wolverine, and Canada lynx.

The Forest Service considers some old growth to be “undesirable” since “these forest types are over-represented compared with historic conditions.” As a result, the draft RFP directs the clearcutting of thousands of centuries-old trees from the Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests.

Comments can be submitted through the comment form linked below. We encourage you to personalize your message with the suggestions below, additional information found above, plus perspectives gained from your own experiences of old growth. You can email Forest Supervisor Probert at cheryl.probert@usda.gov or use our comment form below, which will copy the Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests Plan Revision email address. Please note that sometimes Internet browsers could interfere with submitting a comment through the form below; be sure to bcc yourself. If you received your comment at your email, you can be sure the Forest Service did, too.

Old growth in the Forest Plan Revision

Dear Forest Supervisor Probert

**your signature**

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