SUMMIT COUNTY — A recent U.S. Forest Service shutdown of firewood cutting
programs and other routine activities on national forest lands in Colorado is
part of a public relations spin aimed at getting Congress to further cut
environmental reviews, according to Sloan Shoemaker, a conservation advocate
with the Aspen Wilderness Workshop.
The White River National Forest last week suspended firewood cutting permits, a
move that has potential consequences for people who rely on woodstoves for heat,
especially in light of dramatic price increases for electricity and natural gas.
The agency also suspended the Black Gore Creek cleanup project, aimed at
removing highway sand from the stream just west of Vail Pass, as well as a few
ski area projects, including construction of a new halfpipe at Copper Mountain.
The suspensions came after a federal judge in California ruled that the Forest
Service was unlawfully using ...