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Home arrow Opinion arrow Letters arrow Letters to the Editor for April 4, 2011


Letters to the Editor for April 4, 2011

Unlogged forests should stay
To the editor:
The United Nations has declared 2011 as the International Year of Forests. There is a really great video called “Forests” on the official website at http://www.un.org/en/events/iyof2011/videos.shtml.
The truth is forests worldwide need our help. The greatest remaining wilderness in North America, the boreal forest and all of its incredible wildlife diversity, is being logged to make junk mail, sales catalogues, and toilet paper.

The tropical forests such as the Amazon continue to be logged for agricultural expansion, often for cows to produce more meat for Americans. It’s never been more important for all of us to think about how our lifestyle impacts forests as they are showing multiple signs of stress, globally. Many of these negative impacts start with the consumption patterns in our everyday lives. I personally think that significantly reducing our consumption is the single most important thing we could do to solve many of our society’s greatest challenges.
Here in Northeast Oregon we live in the temperate forest zone, the most fragmented and reduced from its original extent from logging of the major forest types. At the local level, I do think that in the past couple of decades, management has improved. However there are too many projects on our national forests that propose logging in areas that have never been logged before. These previously unlogged forests are rare, they are “lifeboats” to many old growth-dependent species, and ecologically speaking they cannot be improved upon by logging. Proposing logging in these areas is like asking a painter to paint over a Van Gogh; or tearing down the historic district of your quaint downtown for “redevelopment.” Some of these previously unlogged remnant stands exist within a heavily logged area. Yet they continue to enrich the entire forest landscape by providing a unique forest structure, higher quality wildlife habitat and often harbor more sensitive plant species. Let’s commemorate the International Year of Forests by reducing wasteful consumption, and protecting the essential by leaving all unlogged forests intact.
David Mildrexler
La Grande

Stop windmills by saving energy

To the editor:
The U.S. Department of Energy projects that wind will generate less than 1 percent of electric production needs by 2030. Wind facilities compromise our environment, health, wildlife and economy, and Oregonians are paying the astronomical price for wind projects while the energy goes out of state.
Wind developer hype is being challenged as the truth is exposed. Not only is wind power highly subsidized, but additional CO2 emissions are being generated as backup power plants are put into spinning reserve when the wind is blowing. The very few long-term jobs cost taxpayers millions per job. Plus, for every green job, 2.2 regular jobs are lost.
The Friends of the Grande Ronde Valley has started a campaign called the Conserve 3 percent Energy Challenge. By conserving just 3 percent of our electric energy, we can eliminate the need for wind power production and its damaging effects.
Pamela Wilkinson
Education chairwoman
Friends of the Grande Ronde Valley
La Grande

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