Bagging a rain forest

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By The Staff

New Mexicans and Alaskans share a love for the natural beauty of their states and a commitment to care for the land.

Most of us want to develop land properly and know the value of conserving.

Since the first Earth Day 40 years ago, we realized that treasured public lands need good management if they are to survive for future generations.

We’ve learned that communities and individuals have a responsibility to each other to share and take care of the land.

In Southeast Alaska, we live on islands in the middle of a lush, green rainforest — the magnificent Tongass National Forest. Many in small villages heat our homes, fill our freezers and build our cabins from the most northern rainforest in the world.

But now there is a threat to the balance of resource use hammered out over decades between loggers and fishermen, hunters and tourist industries.  

Senate Bill S.881 sits in the committee, which Sen. Jeff Bingaman, D-N.M., chairs and you will dislike it as much as many of us do.

S.881 seeks to turn over 80,000 acres of prime roaded National Forest land to a private corporation for clearcut timber harvest, turning verdant forested hills into a barren moonscape.

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