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Sep-12-2012 23:00printcomments

If it's Important to Oregonians...

Bureaucrats at the State Board of Forestry, academics at the OSU School of Forestry and Oregon media and politicians were AWOL.

Oregon logging
Courtesy: EarthFirst!

(PORTLAND, OR) - Today, PBS Newshour on OPB aired an interesting investigative report on the spraying of dangerous herbicides on Oregon clear cuts in private land owned and exploited by the $13B industry’s lumber barons Specifically called out were Weyerhauser, Roseburg Resources and Seneca Jones. They refused to answer questions so were fronted by a shill from “Oregonians for Food and Shelter,” a lobby for the lumber barons, big agriculture and pesticide/fertilizer manufacturers, distributors, applicators and associated businesses. Residents of Triangle Lake, in Lane county about 25 miles west of Junction City, were featured as the protesting victims of herbicide spraying of clear cuts in their neck of the woods.

The purpose of the herbicides is simply to increase lumber baron profits. They kill every plant except Doug Fit seedlings to speed up their growth for future clear cuts. Almost all spraying has been banned on federal forest land in Oregon since the 1980s, when residents successfully challenged the use of herbicides, including Agent Orange, but state forests were not mentioned.

The herbicides contain a cocktail of chemicals, including suspected hormone disrupters 2,4-D and atrazine, made by Syngenta. Fed up with what they viewed as chemical trespass on their private property, Triangle Lake residents complained to the state and finally connected with an expert in pesticide exposure whose study found the herbicides 2,4-D and atrazine in the urine of every one of the 41 residents tested. The first study by the Oregon Health Authority also found 2,4-D but the lumber barons temporarily removed the two targeted herbicides from their sprayed cocktail this spring so it couldn’t be tested again by the state.

Bureaucrats at the State Board of Forestry, academics at the OSU School of Forestry and Oregon media and politicians were AWOL from the report, presumably because they have ignored the issue. The program ends with residents declaring the only change they will accept is for Governor Kitzhaber  to call a halt to spraying on company-owned forestland.

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Portland Tribune photo by L.E. Baskow

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Michael Munk tries to glean important but overlooked items from the world media on the issues of the day and posts them on an irregular schedule. Although items can overlap, he also maintains separate lists for activists in Portland, Oregon and the Northwest, and special lists for: Labor, Latin America, Israel, Torture Taxis, Korea, and the Czech Republic.

Michael is a highly praised writer from an important generation whose book, the Portland Red Guide, has received high praise.

"City Commissioner Nick Fish gave me a copy. Sat down on my sofa and couldn't put it down until I finished. Fascinating!"
-- Tom Potter, Mayor of Portland 2005-2009

"Whoop! Whoop! I'm impressed by how many names from Portland's past have not made it into our official histories and public memorials. Some were good friends of mine. Local history is too often overlooked. Good work, Mike."
-- Bud Clark, Saloon keeper, Goose Hollow Inn, and Mayor of Portland, 1985–1992

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Anonymous September 13, 2012 11:38 am (Pacific time)

Disgusting. I wonder if there is any way to get an injunction or other immediate way to stop this process while it is resolved permanently...

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