Sunday, June 1, 2014

Campaign to preserve the Mattole River Watershed

If you are interested in getting more involved with trying to stop the madness of industrial logging in the Mattole, please call (707) 442-7465 . Or Message "Friend Mattole Forest" on Facebook.

"Old Growth in Mattole Being Logged Next to Humboldt Redwoods State Park", 2014-05-31 alert from Bay Area Coalition for Headwaters []:
Humboldt Redwood [Logging] Company (HRC) has begun its plans to hammer the Mattole River Watershed. In the Rattlesnake Creek area, right next to Humboldt Redwood State Park, HRC plans to build another logging road. HRC is clearing and building a helicopter pad to helicopter log on some of the most steep and unstable slopes in the continental U.S. and has already begun its logging operations on the beautiful and unstable Long Ridge. At risk are old growth Doug Firs, Grand Firs and Tan Oaks; also in the area are endangered salmon and fisheries habitat.
HRC, who bought the property from Pacific Lumber (of Headwaters Forest fame) after PL went bankrupt, had committed to not log old growth and to be a responsible, sustainable logging company, in contrast to PL. The company also claims it wants public input and will bring people out to the areas it plans to log.

Mattole Update! 2014-05-30:
Humboldt Redwood Company (HRC) told folks in the Mattole woods today that they'll keep falling trees right next to where people are standing. One person was hit with flying debris while observing logging from the state park. Report from on the scene: "The loggers and sheriffs left the ridge road site early because we were refusing to stand back while they cut right on the park boundary. Just forest defenders here now."
We want a moratorium on all Mattole logging until a scientific and objective old-growth survey can be conducted on the lands Humboldt Redwood Company plans to destroy!
Humboldt Redwood Company, LLC phone number: (707) 764-4253- Main Number  (707) 764-4400 – Facsimile. Website []
* PLEASE call, fax, or fill out an online contact form to Humboldt Redwood Company, and tell them to STOP its plans in the Mattole! Tell them to stop endangering activists' lives. HRC knew it was going to meet community resistance when it went into the Mattole...
* Take take HRC up on its "open invitation to visit any forest operation or any part of our forests, any time" (from the HRC website Request that HRC plan a "field visit" for members of the public to check out the land and trees and waterways that will be affected by HRC logging plans. The company can drive people out to the rugged and gorgeous areas of the Mattole and show us what they want to do...  HRC says on its website "please please contact us..."
Let's get 200 of us on a few field visits to the Mattole!!
From HRC's website:  "Field Visits  We believe that the best way to reach common ground on complex and sometimes controversial issues is to go to the forest and see the issue or concern first-hand. Our policy is to take any interested people out on the land to review any concerns or observations they would like to share and review. If you are interested in seeing a part of our operations or our forest, please please contact us via our online contact form."

Public Comment Concerns about the Mattole River Watershed, uploaded to []:
The Pacific Lumber Co. deal for the preservation of the Headwaters Forest left the Mattole River Watershed properties unprotected and slated as a mitigation or sacrifice zone. Over the years, public outcry has included comments, law suits, protests, pepper spray incidents, tree sits and a failed purchase attempt when owned by the Pacific Lumber Co. Maxam.
When the Humboldt Mendocino Redwood Co. took over ownership of the holdings assurances were made to the community that the previously un-entered forest stands would not be taken.
 The mandatory management plans under the Habitat Conservation Plan (H.C.P.) and Sustained Yield Plan (SYP) have inherent problems that will result in the inevitable disappearance of the last stands of pre-Columbian douglas fir forest.  These last stands of un-entered conifer and mixed hardwood forests are crucial to the geological stability of the headwaters located in upper north fork of the Mattole River as well as, the headwatersof the lower north-fork of the Mattole River. Each of these branches of the River system contain numerous class one blue line streams and deliver a great deal of water as well as sediment to the main stem of the Mattole River and the estuary.
The Mattole River Watershed is located along the coast of Northern California, Cape Mendocino being the most westerly point in the continental United States. The triple junction of three major fault lines meet here and are continuously in motion. The San Andreas, the Punta Gordo and the Cascadia make this area particularly active. The potential for major tectonic uplift should be given greater consideration for this
Previously California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection Geologists have recommended denial of Timber Harvest Plans  (T.H.P.) in steep areas due to concerns regarding the potential for major tectonic uplift.
Slides and debris torrents have severe impacts for wildlife and fisheries but, the ultimate concern is the safety of downstream landowners, their families and their private property and their way of life.
Over the past three decades considerable amounts of effort and public monies have been spent to recover habitat and increase fish populations in the watershed home to Coho Salmon, Chinook and Steelhead. Please explain how these current plans benefit these efforts?
Although we are writing comments on behalf of certain current THP’s, we are also writing on behalf of every THP that has already been implemented in the Mattole under the HCP . The cumulative effects impact water quality as well as endangered species suchas the Coho salmon.  The Clean Water Act should be taken into consideration as well as Public Trust Values, when evaluating the outcome of these actions. Another unique aspect of the Mattole River Watershed’s temperate rainforest is the fact that it receives more annual rainfall than any other place in the continental United States.
Historically speaking, 170” is not unusual with the record standing at 211” in one rain season. Currently, we are in a drought. Weather conditions have become more extreme but it is not beyond the realm of possibility that when it does rain this may also be more extreme in the future.
The trend has been hotter and drier which could be an indication that the process of desertification is well underway. Either way these last remnant stands are crucial to the integrity of our landscape and the ability to maintain groundwater supplies for humans, fish and wildlife and for the survival of the forest.
The H.C.P./S.Y.P. did not take climate change into consideration. They are out dated documents and inappropriate for this watershed. They offer little in the way of conservinghabitat. Other than agreeing to not log within the riparian zones of class one streams, can you tell us what exactly is being conserved? The vast majority of the streams had already been logged and it will be generations before they recover.
The ridgeline canopy connectivity is crucial for the survival of forest carnivores such as, the Pine Martin and the Pacific Fisher. They have been documented in the adjoining Humboldt Redwood State Park. These creatures need an extensive area to roam through the canopy if they are to have an opportunity to proliferate. Once thought to be extinct, they are making a come back. Without the old growth habitat continuity they will not have areas to expand and will become genetically weak and die off. How have these creatures been taken into consideration?
The methodology being used to determine the age of the trees leaves the Humboldt Mendocino Redwood Co.  room for significant fudging. Core samples revealed that the trees are actually much older than the co. claims.
The taking of trees that are nearly old growth from un-entered stands leaves nothing to replace the current old growth and disrupts microbial communities that have not been appropriately surveyed. The agarikon grows in the canopy of old growth douglas fir specifically. It is a conk like mushroom that is now extinct in Europe and Asia. It is thought to be the cure for numerous antibiotic resistant strains of staff and tuberculosis amongst other illnesses. This is an extremely important matter and one we hope is not overlooked.
Armond Gonzales (D.F.W.) had concluded, when dropping a watershed’s original forest (old growth) retention level below 10% the ability for recovery was greatly diminished if not rendered impossible.
 The Mattole Watershed was estimated to be at seven percent when Pacific Lumber Co. continued logging. What percentage does the watershed retain currently and what percent will be left if these plans are implemented? Please explain?
Thank you for your time and consideration of these concerns. We look forward to your response.

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