EcoGroovy SPI

Sierra Pacific Industries: Eco Groovy Company 070410

One of my favorite other-fringe people is Tom Dotta, who will pontificate at the drop of a hat on the evils of conservation easements.  For quite awhile I was amused at his position, since I had the more enlightened position that held that the more land preserved the better.  

I’m starting to come around.  The most compelling evidence of all: Sierra Pacific Industries is marketing their conservation rights.

Remember SPI, that enviro hating, down home, spotted owl killing lumber company?  They recently became one of the most eco-groovy companies around.  

First, they met with the Governator and wagged the dog on Cap and Trade/Carbon Sequestering.  They did this by not cutting and selling trees they couldn’t sell anyway, and by convincing the world that by clear cutting, stripping all the trees and brush from the land, they were actually decreasing C02 in the atmosphere because the new growth of trees would suck up carbon in their attempt to create a forest again.  Pot would suck up even more carbon, but they haven’t offered to do that… yet.

Now, SPI has entered into an agreement with several land trusts and organizations to use “grant money” (public money?) to the tune of 8.2 million dollars.  The money buys a conservation easement that, among other things, will limit clear-cutting (but not timber harvesting), the use of herbicides, development, and will provide public access to 12 miles of new trails.  
The land, over by Jackson Meadows, is familiar to locals as the land that High Sierra Rural Alliance sued the county over to prevent the land from being taken from reduced tax status.  Now, instead, SPI gets to continue using the land, can clear cut the parcels next to it, and has collected over 8 million bucks on the deal.
Another victory for HSRA!

Is Tom right?

Read more HERE.

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