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Lawsuit Filed Over Yosemite Fuel Reduction Efforts

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Yosemite, CA — Yosemite National Park is facing a legal challenge in its efforts to clear biomass and forest fuels.

The new work underway by the National Park Service is taking place in areas around Yosemite Valley and the Tuolumne and Merced giant sequoia groves. It is designed to reduce wildfire risk, and includes removing dead trees on the ground, and thinning some conifers under 20 inches in diameter.

A lawsuit filed this week by the Earth Island Institute argues that the National Park Service is breaking a promise to keep the land “un-impaired.” It also alleges violations of the National Environmental Policy Act and the Administrative Procedure Act (related to informing the public).

The lawsuit states that the work has been underway for over a month and the organization is requesting that a judge issue an injunction to halt the efforts.