A federal appeals court on Wednesday reaffirmed a lower-court decision to reinstate the roadless rule. It was considered surprising news as the decision came from a panel of three judges who were appointed by Republican presidents.
Washington State leaders celebrate the court victory:
“This is a great victory for Washingtonians, who have long stood for the protection of our roadless areas,” said Gov. Chris Gregoire. “These special places provide clean water, fish and wildlife habitat, and priceless recreational opportunities for Washington families."
“Today’s victory is sweet for those of us who want to see our forests conserved for future generations,” said Attorney General Rob McKenna. “The conservation of natural resources is something that all state citizens strongly support. And that’s why we’ve made the legal defense of our environment a top priority.” (Washington State Attorney General Press Release)
Though good news, the Roadless Rule and the 58.5 million acres of roadless forests that the rule is meant to protect are yet to be safely protected:
Attorney Paul Turcke, who represents the BlueRibbon Coalition, an off-road vehicle group that intervened in the case, predicted that the roadless "saga will continue."
"I think it is unlikely this will end the litigation," he said.(From Los Angeles Times)
Do your part and encourage your Representative to push the Obama Administration to uphold the 2001 Roadless Rule for permanent protection or write to Senator Cantwell, a leader on the issue.
Read More: ‘Roadless Rule’ goes full circle