From July 10, 2020 Independent Coast Observer
Reprinted by permission
© Copyright Independent Coast Observer, Inc.
Two weeks after the California appeals court enjoined Gualala Redwood Timber LLC from logging the proposed Dogwood timber harvest plan in the floodplain of the Gualala River, a federal lawsuit has been brought against the Dogwood logging plan as well.
The Center for Biological Diversity and Friends of the Gualala River Wednesday filed a notice of intent to sue the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection and Gualala Redwood Timber for “illegal taking,” i.e., killing federally endangered species in the Gualala River.
That notice starts a 60-day clock ticking during which parties can negotiate. But Peter Galvin, founder and director of programs for the Center for Biological Diversity, said his organization does intend to file the lawsuit “61 days from today.”
It has been five years since Friends of the Gualala River began fighting the Dogwood plan, including two trips through Sonoma County Superior Court. The state action is still ongoing. When the appeals court issued the latest injunction, it set a schedule for hearing FoGR’s appeal of Judge Arthur Wick’s [decision] in favor of Gualala Redwood.
FoGR’s brief in the state level appeal is due Aug. 25, according to attorney Ed Yates. Cal Fire and Gualala Redwood would likely have to respond by October and Yates said that means no logging this winter.
Meanwhile Galvin said the federal case may be in trial by the time any decision is reached in state court.
When asked why the Center for Biological Diversity, which has projects around the world, decided to take on the Dogwood case, Galvin said, “FoGR has an excellent reputation in the environmental field. It’s an iconic location in Northern California, a loved and beloved place.” In addition, he said, “The science is on our side. The ingredients all came together.”
“FoGR has an excellent reputation in the environmental field.”
– Peter Galvin, Center for Biological Diversity
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