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Lands Council v. Powell

ELR Citation: 34 ELR 20073
Nos. No. 03-35640, (9th Cir., 08/13/2004)

The Ninth Circuit reversed a district court decision dismissing environmental groups' challenge to a timber harvest approved by the U.S. Forest Service as part of a watershed restoration project in the Idaho Panhandle National Forest. The Forest Service failed to take the requisite "hard look" under NEPA with respect to prior timber harvests and the project's impact on the Westslope Cutthroat trout. In addition, the "Water and Sediment Yields" model used by the Forest Service in conducting its NEPA analysis contained faulty analysis. In addition, the Forest Service violated the NFMA. The project does not comply with the forest plan with regard to protection of fisheries, soils impact, and old growth species viability.