| FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
March 7, 2002
CONTACT: Brian Segee, Center for Biological Diversity (520) 623-5252 x308
APPEAL STOPS TIMBER SALE ON NORTH RIM OF GRAND CANYON
NORTH RIM, AZ- In response to an appeal by a coalition of conservation groups representing over 70,000 people, including the Center for Biological Diversity (CBD), Sierra Club Grand Canyon Chapter and the Southwest Forest Alliance, the Kaibab National Forest has withdrawn the proposed East Rim timber sale, located on the North Rim of the Grand Canyon less than three miles from Grand Canyon National Park.
The East Rim sale would have logged 8 million board feet (or nearly 1,600 truckloads) of trees on 7,000 acres within the Kaibab Plateau region of the North Rim. The Plateau contains some of the most extensive remaining tracts of old growth ponderosa pine forests in the Southwest, as well as diverse mixed-conifer forests and large stands of aspen. Renowned for its wildlife, the Plateau is home to the densest breeding population of northern goshawks in North America, the endemic Kaibab squirrel, the endangered Apache trout and the well-known Kaibab mule deer herd. Newly appointed Kaibab Forest Supervisor Mike Williams withdrew the East Rim decision because the Forest Service failed to adequately consider the sales impacts on wildlife species.
We are encouraged by the decision to withdraw the East Rim timber sale, stated Brian Segee, appeals coordinator with CBD. We will not be satisfied, however, until the Forest Service commits to protecting all of the remaining old-growth forest on the Kaibab Plateau. Not one more large tree should be logged on the North Rim, concluded Segee
The North Rim, particularly the Kaibab Plateau area where the sale is located, has long been recognized as a paradise for wildlife. President and sportsman Teddy Roosevelt was so impressed by the area that in 1906 that he designated it the Grand Canyon Game Preserve (the only such preserve in the Nation), and demanded that it be set apart forever for the use and benefit of our people as a whole and not sacrificed to the shortsighted greed of a few.
The Plateau has also been designated a National Natural Landmark for the protection of the Kaibab squirrel. Found nowhere else in the world, the Kaibab Squirrel is a classic example of evolution through geographic isolation, every bit as significant as Darwin's finches on the Galapagos Islands.
Challenging the East Rim Timber Sale is the first action of a new Southwest Forest Alliance campaign called Old Growth Forever! With this campaign, environmental groups in Arizona are seeking to stop the logging of rare old growth trees by having the North Kaibab designated as an Old Growth Preserve.