The Wahkiakum County Eagle - Established as The Skamokawa Eagle in 1891

DNR hosting meeting on harvest, murrelet

 

January 19, 2017



The Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS) will host a meeting tonight (Thursday) in Cathlamet to gather public input on plans for sustainable harvest and marbled murrelet management.

The meeting will be at 6 p.m. in the Multi-purpose Room at Julius A. Wendt Elementary School.

In November, the DNR released draft environmental impact statements for public review--the Marbled Murrelet Long-term Conservation Strategy, written jointly with USFWS, and the Sustainable Harvest Calculation for state trust lands in western Washington.

DNR and USFWS have held public meetings and webinars in January around the state concerning both documents.

The draft impact statement for marbled murrelet management analyzes alternative approaches to long-term conservation of marbled murrelet habitat on DNR-managed lands within 55 miles of marine waters. The seabird is listed as threatened under the federal Endangered Species Act.

Wahkiakum County commissioners have expressed concern that the management options listed in the plan will restrict harvest of timber on county trust lands managed by the DNR. County commissioners say the revenue from these lands is very important to the county budget.

After public comments are gathered and a final environment impact statement is issued jointly by DNR and USFWS, the policy will go before the state Board of Natural Resources for final action.

Comments should be submitted to the SEPA Center at sepacenter@dnr.wa.gov or SEPA Center, PO Box 47015, Olympia, WA 98504-7015. Include the file number 12-042001 on all comments. The subject line of email comments should include “SEPA File No. 12-042001.”

The sustainable harvest calculation will help determine the volume of timber that DNR will harvest from 1.8 million acres of western Washington state forests during the 2015-2024 planning period. The draft impact statement documents DNR’s analysis of the proposal and provides an opportunity for agencies and the public to review and provide suggestions.

Wahkiakum commissioners have also expressed concern that the harvest options won't provide adequate revenue to keep county government healthy.

Public comments on this draft impact statement are being accepted until 5 p.m. March 9, 2017. Comments should be submitted to the SEPA Center at: sepacenter@dnr.wa.gov or SEPA Center, PO Box 47015, Olympia, WA 98504-7015. Comments should include file number 15-012901 on all comments. The subject line of email comments should include “SEPA File No. 15-012901.”

 

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