The U.S. District Court for the District of Oregon has entered an order enjoining the Forest Service from removing any trees at the site of a logging project in the Willamette National Forest pending the completion of an Environmental Assessment (EA) or Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). The location serves as critical habitat for spotted owls, black bears, cougars, and hundreds of other animal species. Cascade Wildlands, Williamette Riverkeeper, and Forest Service Employees for Environmental Ethics sued the U.S. Forest Service, seeking emergency injunctive relief to halt the project that was scheduled to begin on November 7, 2021. The Forest Service had declared that the proposed project warranted a “categorical exemption” from usual procedures and therefore approved the project without requiring an EA or EIS.
[To accompany Federal Case Law Update "Environmental Groups Prevail in Attempt to Halt Logging Project in Critical Wildlife Habitat" from Brooks Animal Law Digest Issue No. 112.]