Logging Plan Submitted-SJWC's Misleading FAQ

The Los Gatos logging plan has been posted by the CDF. The location is:

The plan itself is quite alarming and differs in many significant ways from the previous public statements made by SJWC. They have been misleading the public about the extent and scope of the plan.

Below are examples drawn from the FAQ posted by SJWC on the www.hiway17.com website and contrasted with the ACTUAL plan found on the CDF website. The NTMP document used for comparison is entitled 20051018_1-05NTMP-022SCL_Sec2.pdf. Page numbers from this document are provided.

This is just a preliminary analysis of the NTMP plan. Further analysis is underway.

Cutting The Largest Most Fire Resistant Trees

The plan calls for the maximum amount of cutting allowable by law. The NTMP document makes NO mention of trees over 24" in diameter. In fact the plan calls for cutting 60% of the trees 18 inches in diameter or greater (ie leaving 40%). The plan calls for far more cutting of the most fire resistant trees than is mentioned in SJWC's previous public statement.

SJWC FAQ - "In accordance with harvesting requirements in this NTMP, approximately one fifth of the conifers 12” or larger in diameter at breast height (dbh) within the stand will be harvested at any given time. Of these, typically about 40% of the trees greater than 24” dbh will be harvested. This means that immediately after a harvest, the majority of the largest trees will be left standing, along with a great proportion trees throughout all diameter classes. "

NTMP Document - "A well distributed timber stand shall be left after operations that is at least 40% by number of those trees 18 inches or more in dbh (diameter at breast height) and at least 50% of those trees over 12 inches but less than 18 inches."
NTMP Section 2 Page 5

Year Round Logging

SJWC has stated that logging will occur for a limited time. The NTMP calls for year-round logging. By the way, the NTMP includes letters from local schools referring to the fact that day-care and other school activities will take place year-round.

SJWC FAQ - "Each separate harvest will occur during the late spring or summer and will take approximately 6 weeks to complete." "While schools are unlikely to be in session during operations..."

NTMP Document - "Will timber operations occur during the winter period - YES" "Tractor operations may occur during the winter period." " I choose to prepare a winter operating plan" "Cable yarding may occur during the winter period" "Helicopter logging may occur during the winter period"
NTMP page 12.

Hours of Operation

No mention is made in the NTMP about a 4:00 pm cut-off

SJWC FAQ - "Big Creek restricts active operations of their crews to the hours of 7 a.m. and 4 p.m."

NTMP Document - "Within 300 feet of any occupied dwelling, the operation of power equipment, including chain saws, except licensed highway vehicles, shall be restricted to the hours between 8:00AM and 7:00PM. Operations elsewhere on the property may occur between the hours of 7:00AM and 7:00PM." NTMP page 31.

Logging Slash

Logging slash will be nearly 3 feet high.

SJWC FAQ - "Logging slash will be lopped (cut) to a level close to the ground."

NTMP Document - "Logging and distributing logging slash in designated areas so that no part of it remains more than 30 inches above the ground." NTMP Page 24

Opening Up The Forest Canopy

The forest canopy WILL be opened allowing the introduction of invasive fast growing fire prone species such as scotch broom.

SJWC FAQ: "Because forest canopy will be only partially removed during any given harvest, invasive species will not establish themselves as aggressively in the shaded conditions"

NTMP Document: "The objective of the hardwood treatment would be to reduce canopy closure and allow more sunlight to reach the redwood generation" - NTMP Page 6

Other information

Endangered Species
NTMP explicitly mentions the presence of California Red-Legged Frogs (an endangered species) and Ospreys (a sensitive species) in the logging area. NTMP Page 25.

Archeological Sites
Archeological sites are found in the NTMP area. NTMP page 29

Erosion Hazard Rating
Erosion Hazard Rating is High NTMP page 9

Kevin Flynn
October 19, 2005