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TO: David Edelson, Louis Blumberg, and Frannie Hoover Waid

FROM: Michael Jackson

RE: Quincy Library Group

DATE: May 31, 1994

I was pleased to receive your letter of May 27, 1994, and agree that we all share "the same goal of healthy and sustainable Sierra Nevada forests" and we, too, look forward to working with you toward that goal. I would like you to know that it does not benefit my political agenda to paint the "nationals" as "bad guys" and if in frustration I have been guilty of doing so, I personally apologize to each of you.

I am glad you had the opportunity to review the March 30 letter in which we believed the issues of NEPA and CASPO compliance had been resolved. The Quincy Library Group has pressed the Forest Service at every occasion to comply with NEPA in regard to our proposal. We have been informed that our proposal is being evaluated in the Region 5 Spotted Owl EIS. We understand that document is due out in draft form in August of 1994. We are avidly awaiting the Forest Service's analysis of our proposal and the comments that we welcome from national environmental organizations, national timber interests, national wise-use interests, and maybe even the public interest. The Quincy Library Group cannot provide a NEPA review of its own proposal, only the government can do that. We continue to believe that our proposal complies with every statute and that the laws are not the problem. The government can, and should, satisfy the law.

You are correct that we have not given you a sufficient description of CASPO group selection. Mike Yost will be responding with a prescription that we believe will clarify our silvicultural techniques. In the mean time, consider the group selection that we all supported in the Plumas Forest Plan Appeal. The "group selection" the QLG advocates is the group selection practiced on the Blodgett Forest of the University of California, Berkeley. The reason that the environmental movement (NRDC, Wilderness Society, and Sierra Club included) supported group selection on the Plumas National Forest during the 1980's was that it most carefully mimicked natural processes. We believe that on land to be harvested, group selection best maintains forest structure and ecosystem function.

The question of fire and its role in the ecosystem needs to be resolved as soon as possible. The QLG has identified the fuels build-up as an important environmental, economic, and political concern in the Sierra Nevada. Whether the QLG proposal is adopted or not, the question of catastrophic fire and its economic and ecological costs must be considered now. The QLG supports the Wilderness Society's budget request for natural fuels management in Region 5. We are very pleased to have supported the passage of this request in Congress. Quincy Library Group worked very hard to ensure bipartisan support for this request because it is the right thing to do. We commend the Wilderness Society for their initiative and the California Women in Timber for their perseverance in lobbying Congress to adopt this sound investment in the health of California's forests.

The members of the QLG understand that our proposal is not the only way to balance economic needs with functioning ecosystems, but it is one that has shown promise in the past. It is supported by the best science the Forest Service and the universities have to offer and for all of the reasons enumerated in the Appeal of the Plumas National Forest Land Management Plan, it is the right thing to do for the next five years.

We support the right of NRDC, Louisiana Pacific, Neil Dion, Jean Walters, or anyone else to oppose our proposal because they believe that they have a better alternative. Everyone has the right to petition their government, and we are certainly taking advantage of our right. We do not question anyone's good faith simply for disagreeing on means to our common goals. It has been educational working with timber-industry people. Some of them see many of the same things we do. I want to thank the California environmental leadership for being willing to listen, and where possible, to act in cooperation with traditional adversaries like C.F.A. and C.W.I.T. In my opinion this kind of cooperation is necessary to ensure rapid attention to potentially catastrophic environmental problems in California.

cc: President William Jefferson Clinton

   Jim Lyons, Assistant Secretary of Agriculture
   Jack Ward Thomas, Chief, USDA, Forest Service
   Ronald Stewart, Regional Foreste
   Senator Barbara Boxer
   Senator Dianne Feinstein
   Congressman George Miller
   Congressman Howard Berman
   Andrea Lawrence
   Laurel Ames

   Congressman Wally Herger

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