Judge Rules For Scaling Back Roadless Protections
Conservationists call for Obama to protect roadless backcountry following court ruling.
The San Francisco magistrate judge who upheld the Clinton-era roadless rule last year, has weighed in, again.
Judge Elizabeth Laporte’s has ruled to scale back roadless protections to just the ten states in the Ninth Circuit - including Oregon and Washington.
Her decision comes on the heels of a Wyoming decision last August, which invalidated the roadless rule altogether.
For almost eight years, the Bush Administration has been arguing that the roadless rule was too broad.
Environmental groups have fought to keep it in place. Sean Stevens with Oregon Wild says the decision this week is likely to be the last word on roadless areas before President Bush leaves office.
Sean Stevens: “So, when Obama assumes the presidency, one of the first things he can - it’s a very easy step - is say that the roadless rule, the Clinton Roadless Rule, is the law of the land once again. And then we don’t have to have this uncertainty about what’s protected and what’s not.”
Without presidential intervention, the roadless rule could continue to play out in the court system.
Both the Wyoming decision and Judge Laporte’s earlier decision have been appealed to two different federal appeals’ courts.Read the original story