An excuse to cut down trees

August 25th, 2002 – 11:06 am
Tagged as: Uncategorized

“President George Bush left his holiday ranch in Texas yesterday to head not to the Johannesburg earth summit to discuss saving the planet but in the opposite direction, both geographically and spiritually: to America’s Pacific north-west to pick another fight with environmentalists. He flew to Oregon to announce a new plan to curb forest fires, which in this drought-stricken summer have reached epidemic proportions in the western states.

His scheme, which sounds bland enough and has the support of many politicians of both main parties in the western US, is supposed to allow forests to be thinned and underbrush cleared to reduce the danger of catastrophic fires taking hold. But green activists say that it is a ruse to give the logging companies unfettered access to protected forests.”

Bush has decided that he’s going to use the devastating wildfires in the western U.S. this year as an excuse to allow more logging in national forests. While he talks a lot about thinning the brush and undergrowth to cut down on fire danger, he fails to mention the fact that his proposal will actually allow the timber companies to harvest mature trees as well, or that his proposal would make it harder for enviromentalists to use the courts to try and block such logging. Ironically, as the Guardian UK story mentions, he chose to make this announcement just as the latest earth summit is getting underway in South Africa.

Read the full story here.

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