ACTION IN DEFENSE OF ZALESKI STATE FOREST

DIRECT ACTION TO STOP LOGGING ON OHIO'S STATE FORESTS

Friday-August 31, 2001-concerned citizens took to the trees to stop the King Hollow timber sale in Zaleski State Forest in southeastern Ohio. The protesters are suspending themselves in trees in order to impede further cutting of the public forest. 

OUR RESOURCES ARE LIMITED AND WE NEED YOUR SUPPORT

Please come to king Hollow and help us defend this beautiful forest against the plunder initiated by the Division of Forestry. We need a diverse range of skills to keep the chainsaws at bay-both in town and in the forest.


Why are citizens protesting the logging of the Zaleski State Forest?

Ohio law does not require the ODNR-Division of Forestry (DOF) to consider public input regarding logging on state forests. while the DOF is empowered to create rules that would allow for such input and, despite repeated requests for such rules, the DOF has refused to make public input a mandatory part of its decision-making process. Even more important, Ohio laws that protect state-listed endangered and threatened species do not provide citizens with the right to enforce them, as do the federal laws. Unfortunately, the most threatened species in Ohio are not protected by the federal laws. The Zaleski State Forest provides habitat for some of these species. when the DOF decided to clear the forest and not listen to our pleas to stop, we were given no choice but to protest.

Here are ten more reasons why logging should be stopped on Ohio's 20 state forests:

1. Fragmentation of Forest habitat: The vast majority of Ohio's forests are extremely fragmented. State forests offer some of the most contiguous pieces of forest and some of the most viable wildlife habitat in the state and should be preserved as such.

2. Pallets: The majority of the wood harvested in Ohio is made into shipping pallets, most pallets are then used once and thrown away. This is a waste of our forests.

3. Lack of Public Land: Ohio has very little public land and very high population density. The lands that we do have are among the most visited in the country. The state forests are extremely valuable from a recreation standpoint.

4. State Forests are a small part of Ohio's forests: The majority of Ohio's forests occur on privately owned land. State forests account for less than 2% of the forested land in the state. This means only 0.7% 6f Ohio is state forest land. Ending logging on the state forests will have very little impact on the state's timber industry.

5. No Environmental Assessment: The Division of Forestry conducts no environmental assessment of an area when planning a timber sale. They merely look at the age and size of the trees in determining what is to be logged; an 80-year-old tree is seen as "economically mature" and needing to be cut, yet in a healthy forest ecosystem, this same tree is in its ecological infancy.

6. Valuable Recreation and Environmental Education Possibilities: Again, we have very liffle puNic land in Ohio. These forests offer wonderful opportunities to get out and enjoy and learn about our native forest ecosystems.

7. Tourism: Tourism is a big business in the state and studies have shown that communities with a lot of public land are better off focusing their economies on tourism as opposed to resource extraction.

8. No Public input: This land belongs to the citizens of Ohio but at no point in the timber sale process is there a place for public input.

9. Preserving Biodiversity: The forests of southern Ohio are among the most diverse temperate ecosystems in the world. They arc home to a number of rare and endangered plants and animals. Logging, especially clearcutting, has been shown to have a dramatically negative effect on the biodiversity of an area.

10. Clearcutting: l$e past few years have seen a dramatic rise in the number of elearcuts on the state forests. These cleareuts degrade the land by causing erosion, loss of diversity, loss of habitat for many of the state's endangered species such as the Indiana flat. The Division of forestry should be managing these forests as ecosystems not products.

Finally- Less than 200 years ago, over 95% of Ohio was forested; our state having been at the heart of what was one the Barth's greatest forests. Today, less than a third of the state is "forested," much of that consisting of small, scattered islands. The state forests account for less than 2% of Ohio's FORESTED land, and nearly none of it is permanently protected. It is a reasonable request that this tiny percentage be set aside for the animals, plants, and recreational opportunities that depend on it.

Directions to the King Hollow Timber Sale Protest

The Zaleski State Forest is in southeast Ohio, approximately 3 miles west of Athens, Ohio.

From Columbus, Lancaster, Logan: Take 33 southeast to Nelsonville, Ohio. Turn right onto 278 at the first gas station on your right as you enter town. Continue on 278 as it doglegs across 56. After passing 56, continue on 278 for several miles. Turn Jeff onto King Hollow Road (if you pass the parking lot for the Zaleski Backpack Trail or Lake Hope, you've gone /2 mile too far). Once you turn onto King Hollow Road, you will drive one more mile to the site. The rally is being staged where the access road to the timber sale joins King hollow Road.

From Athens, Marietta: Take 56 west out of Athens, Ohio. Travel on 56 to the intersection of 56 and 278. Take a left on 278. Continue on 278 for several miles. Turn left onto King Hollow Road (If you pass the parking lot for the Zaleski Backpack Trail or Lake Hope, you've gone 1/2 mile too far). Once you turn left you will drive one more milc to the site. The rally is being staged where the access road to the timber sale joins King hollow Road.

From the South and the West: Travel to Jackson, Ohio. From Jackson, take 93 to McArthur. Jn MeArthur, take 50 east to 278. Turn left onto 278. Take 278 passed the entrance to Lake Hope State Park. Once you pass the parking lot of the Zaleski backpack trailhead look for King Hollow Road on your right, about mile, Turn night onto King Hollow Road. Once on King Hollow, drive one more mile to the site. The rally is being staged where the access road to the timber sale joins King Hollow Road.