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Activist Continue to Resist Logging in the Mattole
by Mattole Defender (salmon [at] mattoledefense.org)
Thursday Feb 8th, 2001 5:38 PM
Non-violent peaceful activist continue to resist destructive logging in the Mattole.
On Monday February 5 and Wednesday February 7 activist and Mattole residents confront loggers trying to log THP (Timber Harvest Plan) 309 in the Upper Mattole watershed at Rattlesnake Creek. This THP consists of 63 acres of 2nd growth and old growth Douglas Fir in an area with steep sloped ravines and loose soils in a very active earthquake zone, a combination that often creates landslides when forests are clearcut. The THP borders Humboldt Redwoods State Park. In fact, the loggers park their trucks on state park property and walk into Maxxam/Pacific Lumber property where the THP at its closest is located some 200 feet from the park road. The Forest Defender's blockades, 12 miles in from this new cut, continue to hold off logging along Long Ridge where major stands of old growth Douglas Fir are on the chopping block for destruction.

Since THP 309 is located within easy walking distance of a state road, blockades would not be effective in halting logging on this THP. Instead Mattole residents and activists met fallers and engaged them in conversation, trying to talk them out of continuing to log this stand. Each day when these efforts failed, Forest Defenders accompanied fallers into the THP where they continued dialog and placed themselves in the fall zones of attempted cuts. Though danger still existed for the activists on these days, to the loggers' credit, unlike the Mattole cuts in November 2000, they did not fall trees when activists were observed in the fall zones. On Monday, only one logger continued attempting to log trees. The others returned to the parking area and lit a fire with gasoline to keep warm.

On both days Sheriffs were called in to try and remove activist from the cut area. On Monday one activist of seven in the woods was caught and charged with misdemeanor trespassing, then transported to the county jail in Eureka where he was released later in the evening pending arraignment. On Wednesday more activist entered the woods and more sheriffs arrived to try and remove them. On Wednesday three activist were arrested. On both Monday and Wednesday, cops targeted people on state park public property, asked for their ID and ran checks for outstanding warrants. On one occasion when asked to explain why people were being shaken down when not engaged in any illegal activity, one cop replied we always do that. Another cop quickly covered for him by saying they were engaged in a tresspassing investigation. Loggers on coming out of the woods have tried to identify activists along the road as having trespassed on PL property but have not been successful. The forest defenders had simply vanished!

Trees were felled on both Monday and Wednesday but the continuing peaceful and non-violent confrontations by Mattole Forest Defenders have slowed the destruction of the Mattole forest. Forest activists have vowed to continue their struggle until logging practices in the area become environmentally sustainable and until ancient forest logging ceases.
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Come one, come allShunkaTuesday Feb 20th, 2001 4:11 PM
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