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Inland Empire Pub. Lands Council v. Glickman

ELR Citation: 26 ELR 21149
Nos. 95-36272, 88 F.3d 697/(9th Cir., 05/08/1996) aff'd

The court holds that a U.S. Forest Service decision to conduct salvage timber sales in the Kootenai National Forest in northwest Montana was not arbitrary and capricious under §2001(a)(3) of the salvage timber rider to the Rescissions Act of 1995. The court first holds that the Forest Service did not need to consider the effect of the sales on endangered grizzly bears, or to adopt all of the specific recommendations of an interagency grizzly bear task force report on which the Forest Service relied. Section 2001(c)(1)(A) of the Act gives the Secretary of Agriculture sole discretion over the information considered to reach a decision and sole discretion to determine whether the decision complies with existing applicable forest management plans and guidelines. The court also holds that the Secretary of Agriculture need not personally authorize every salvage timber sale, because that would contradict the Act's purpose of expediting such sales. The court next holds that the environmental plaintiffs lack standing to assert that the Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) acted arbitrarily and capriciously in concurring with the Forest Service's decision. It is not likely that the plaintiffs' injury would be redressed, since the Forest Service did not need the FWS' concurrence to proceed with the sales. Finally, the court holds that the district court did not abuse its discretion in striking plaintiffs' extra-record exhibits and declarations. Section 2001(f)(4) of the Act limits judicial review to a review of the record.

[The district court decision is published at 26 ELR 20880.]

Counsel for Plaintiffs
James S. Angell
Sierra Club Legal Defense Fund
11 E. Main St., Unit C, Bozeman MT 59715
(406) 586-9699

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

Before Choy, Beezer, and Hawkins, JJ.