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Forest Service releases new planning rule
The Forest Service today released their Final Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement for forest planning. This version of the "planning rule" has been in development for just over two years. The agency held regional and national roundtables, and also received more than 300,000 comments on the rule. They've been trying to update their 1982 planning regulations since the 1990s, but none of their previous attempts have survived the courts.
From the quickest of scans, it appears that the final rule released today has retained the new emphasis on restoration and water quality improvement, which we are happy to see. The agency will be issuing a final decision on the rule in 30 days. We'll be reviewing the details of the new rule over the next few weeks, in advance of that final decision. As we dig deeper, we'll keep you updated regarding both the opportunities and the challenges this new rule might bring.
To learn more and to download the rule, visit the dedicated planning rule section of the Forest Service website
In addition, there have been numerous media articles about the new rule today, below are links to a few: