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Seattle Audubon Soc'y v. Lyons

ELR Citation: 24 ELR 20937
Nos. Nos. C92-479WD et al., (W.D. Wash., 06/06/1994) injunction dissolved

The court dissolves a 1992 injunction that prevented the U.S. Forest Service (Forest Service) from auctioning or awarding timber sales to log suitable habitat for the northern spotted owl in Regions 5 and 6 until the Forest Service implemented revised standards and guidelines in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and the National Forest Management Act (NFMA). In issuing the injunction, the court had held that a 1992 record of decision (ROD) and related environmental impact statement (EIS), which would have allowed logging of such habitat, violated NEPA. The court holds that the issue of whether the 1992 ROD and EIS violated the NFMA is moot, because the 1992 plan has since been abandoned. The court holds that NEPA violations identified in the 1992 order are either moot or have been cured by the Forest Service's 1994 issuance of a new ROD and EIS. The court does not rule on the legality of the 1994 plan, however, and notes that the parties are free to challenge it. The court orders the Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management to provide at least 30 days' written notice to all parties before auctioning any new timber sales to log suitable spotted owl habitat.

Counsel for Plaintiffs
Peggy Hennessy
610 SW Alder St., Portland OR 97205
(503) 227-3516

Counsel for Defendants
Steven Odell
Environment and Natural Resources Division
U.S. Department of Justice, Washington DC 20530
(202) 514-2000