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Environmentalists Object To Logging At Hoosier National Forest

Hoosier National Forest

(Adam Pinsker, WFIU/WTIU News)

The clock is ticking for conservationists to make suggestions on altering the US Forestry Service’s plan to log 4,375 acres of non-contiguous land in the Hoosier National Forest.

The agency says the logging will remove older trees that could be a threat to species, but the Indiana Forest Alliance says the logging will do just the opposite.

Executive Director Jeffrey Stant says species of birds and bats could be harmed during the process, and Lake Monroe’s water supply could be jeopardized.

“These acres they want to cut on all drain into the South Fork of Salt Creek, which has a high sediment load and is polluting Lake Monroe,” says Stant.

Hoosier National Forest Supervisor Mike Chaveas says the logging will take place far enough away from the Lake Monroe watershed to cause any harm.

“When we do the actual implementation of the project, we have very strict standards of best management practices that have a good track record, where there is solid research that shows they are effective at keeping sediment from reaching water bodies,” says Chaveas.

Chaveas says contractors will fix older culverts and roads that may already be helping sediment reach the watershed. 

The forest service says only people who filed formal objections to the project during the open comment period are prt of the objection resolution process.

Stant says his group should have some alternative suggestions for the project before the February 3rd deadline.

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