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Wyoming v. Department of Agric.

ELR Citation: 38 ELR 20212
Nos. No. 07-CV-17, (D. Wyo., 08/12/2008) Injunction granted

A district court enjoined, for the second time, the U.S. Forest Service's 2001 roadless rule, which prohibits road construction, road reconstruction, and timber harvesting in inventoried roadless areas across the nation. The Forest Service's failure to rigorously explore and objectively evaluate all reasonable alternatives was contrary to law, and the agency's conclusion that its cumulative impacts analysis in the final environmental impact statement satisfied its National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) duties was a clear error in judgment. For these and other reasons, the rule violates NEPA. In addition, the Forest Service's designation of 58.5 million acres as "roadless areas" was a thinly veiled attempt to designate "wilderness areas" in violation of the clear and unambiguous process established by the Wilderness Act for such designation. The rule, therefore, must be set aside.

[Prior decisions in this litigation can be found at 33 ELR 20250 and 35 ELR 20144.]