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Environmentalists Balk At Forest Service Management Plan

Sacramento, CA — Environmental groups are telling a federal judge that the management plan for more than 11 million acres of Sierra Nevada national forest illegally triples logging under the guise of fire prevention.

They want the U-S Forest Service to return to a 2001 plan approved in the last days of the Clinton Administration. They say that plan offers more protection for the environment and scarce species like the California spotted owl. The Forest Service says it did everything legally.

The judge says it may take more hearings before he rules on environmental groups´ challenge. The court battle is the latest in a 15-year war over managing 11 national forests running more than 400 miles down the spine of the Sierra Nevada mountains.