In his Jan. 27 letter, Dennis Watson is absolutely right that in the last decade the Forest Service has offered a great many timber sales that are unprofitable to log. Mr. Watson blames the Clinton administration for the 20-plus uneconomical timber sales that the Forest Service recently canceled. But it must be stated: Bush isn't doing things any better. The Forest Service continues to design timber sales that require so much expensive road building that they have no hope of turning a profit.
The latest example is the Woodpecker timber sale near Petersburg on Mitkof Island. Originally, the Forest Service planned a timber sale that would allow logging only off of existing roads. However, in its latest draft of the Woodpecker plan, the Forest Service has added a number of controversial unroaded acres that would require costly road building.
So long as the Forest Service continues to focus on road building, logging will never be accomplished in a fiscally or environmentally responsible manner.
Carolyn and Jay Pritchett
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