Tag: U.S. Supreme Court

Public lands: U.S. Supreme Court won’t hear challenge to Tongass National Forest roadless area protection

Tongass National Forest map
The Tongass National Forest’s roadless areas will continue to be protected from logging and other development.

Alaska’s bid for more logging in roadless areas hits a brick wall

Staff Report

Fifteen years of wrangling over a national public lands roadless rule ended with a whimper last week, as the U.S. Supreme Court rejected an attempt by the State of Alaska to open parts of the Tongass National Forest to logging.

Alaska went to the Supreme Court to try and overturn lower court rulings that had found that the Bush administration improperly exempted the Tongass from the landmark conservation measure.

A coalition including the Organized Village of Kake (a federally recognized Alaska Native tribe), tourism businesses, and conservationists joined the federal government in urging the Supreme Court to leave the lower court rulings intact.

The roadless sections of the Tongass National Forest are important for wildlife and to local residents for hunting, fishing, recreation, and tourism, the driving forces of the local economy.

“The Supreme Court’s decision means that America’s biggest national forest, the Tongass, will continue to benefit from a common-sense rule that applies nationwide,” said Earthjustice attorney Tom Waldo.

Will the U.S. Supreme Court block the Clean Power Plan?

Fossil fuel dinosaurs make last-ditch effort to keep polluting the nation’s air with dangerous greenhouse gases

Mercury from the Craig Station power plant in northwest Colorado pollutes lakes in Rocky Mountain National Park.
Mercury from the Craig Station power plant in northwest Colorado pollutes lakes in Rocky Mountain National Park.

By Bob Berwyn

Texas, West Virginia, Colorado and 26 other states are going to the U.S. Supreme Court with a last-ditch effort to slow the Obama administration’s efforts to reduce greenhouse gas pollution.

The states want the court to block implementation of the EPA Clean Power Plan, which they describe as “the most far reaching and burdensome rule EPA has ever forced onto the States.”

Last week, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit rejected the same request, leading to the appeal to the Supreme Court. The states say the plan will require a massive shift away from fossil fuels to renewable sources of energy, and claim the changes will cost jobs and money. Continue reading “Will the U.S. Supreme Court block the Clean Power Plan?”

U.S. Supreme Court rejects national forest roadless rule challenge

State, mining and ranching groups lose bid to overturn protection for 58 million acres of environmental valuable wild lands

The national forest roadless rule stands.

By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY — A last-ditch effort by miners, ranchers and other extractive users to overturn the U.S. Forest Service’s national roadless rule has failed, as the U.S. Supreme Court reject a plea to hear the case.

The formal petition came from the state of Wyoming, which last year lost its challenge in the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Wyoming was joined in the petition by eight other states, numerous mining and ranching groups, along with several motorized recreation groups.

The states and groups repeated their oft-rejected claims that the rule was adopted in violation of federal environmental laws and that the rule represented a de facto illegal creation of wilderness. Continue reading “U.S. Supreme Court rejects national forest roadless rule challenge”

Eight states, mining, ranching and motorized groups ask U.S. Supreme Court to hear latest roadless rule challenge

Critics continue to claim the rule creates de facto wilderness

Will the U.S. Supreme Court hear a challenge to the Forest Service roadless conservation rule?

By Bob Berwyn

SUMMIT COUNTY — Eight states, numerous mining and ranching groups, along with several motorized recreation groups have joined the Colorado Mining Association in appealing the U.S. Forest Service’s national roadless rule to the U.S. Supreme Court.

In its petition to the Supreme Court, the Colorado mining group repeats the oft-rejected claim that the roadless rule was adopted in violation of federal environmental laws, and that the rule is “a sweeping usurpation of the authority vested solely in Congress to designate lands as wilderness.”

Even though federal appeals courts have rejected those legal challenges, at least one natural resource law expert thinks the array of heavyweight opposition could sway the Supreme Court’s conservative justices to take on the case.

The 2001 Roadless Area Conservation Rule limits road-building on about 58 million acres of national forest lands across the country. It was adopted after an extensive public process to protect water quality, wildlife habitat, and in recognition of the fact that the Forest Service has a massive backlog of maintenance on the existing national forest road system. Continue reading “Eight states, mining, ranching and motorized groups ask U.S. Supreme Court to hear latest roadless rule challenge”