(Note from GB: The plan for Klamath & other places in our country as foretold by Tofell in 1979, no one listened. Notice the name Nancy Ingalsbee at the bottom.)

November 13, 2002

By Bill Moshofsky

Ever since the defeat in the 1970s of Federal "land use" legislation to achieve federal control of private land, there have been relentless efforts to obtain the same objectives by different and indirect means, primarily by non-elected federal administrative agencies.

Most visible have been federal "wetlands" and "endangered species" rules and regulations.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, on their own and without Congressional approval, established the wetland preservation program -- and they have taken control of over 95 million acres, 75% of which is private land. Promotional information describes wetlands as swamps, bogs and marshes, but the reality is wetlands are defined to include all land that is merely damp a couple weeks during the growing season and has certain kinds of soil and vegetation. Almost all use of wetland areas is either outlawed or severely restricted -- the cost of getting a permit to use such areas, including "mitigating" the impact of the use, is prohibitive. Incredibly, landowners have to "pay" to use their land, instead of getting paid for losses they suffer.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is using the federal Endangered Species Act to lock up millions more acres of private as well as public land to provide habitat for animals, birds, insects, and plants the agency decides are endangered or threatened. No consideration is given to economic impacts or to losses suffered by private landowners who are denied use of their land to provide habitat. Concern for the spotted owl and the marbled murrelet has already heavily impacted the state of Oregon, and proposed "salmon" plans would have devastating impacts on private property and the economy of the state.

Claiming that protecting "individual" species of wildlife is inadequate, preservationists are now promoting protection of "ecosystems," where all species can interact without interference or intervention from humans.

Basically, they want more and more areas to be set aside as wilderness, not for the enjoyment of people but for wildlife alone.

No consideration is given to private property rights or economic or social concerns.

Two major "ecosystem planning" projects are moving forward in the Northwest -- aimed at more federal top-down, command and control over 144 million acres -- the Eastside and Upper Columbia segments of The Interior Columbia Basin Ecosystem Managment Project [ICBEMP].

The goal is to greatly reduce grazing, timber harvesting, mining, roads and recreation.

The "American Heritage Rivers Initiative" is yet another project aimed at more federal control of entire river watersheds throughout the country. President Clinton launched it without Congressional approval.

As rivers are designated, 13 huge federal agencies will become more and more involved in state and local land use decisions, further eroding private property rights.

Meanwhile, another federal preservationist program is surfacing around the country. Itís called the United Nations Biosphere Reserve/Wildlands Project. Its objective is to restore "ecosystems" in "core reserves of wilderness off-limits to humans," except for hiking for "ecological research and environmental education."

The core areas are to be surrounded by a first "buffer zone" where human activity is severely limited, and than outer buffer zones for later expansion of the buffer and core areas.

The 10-million acre Champlain Adirondack Biosphere Reserve was designated before property owners knew anything about it.

Nancy Ingalsbee, Executive Director of the Klamath Alliance for Resources & Environment, reports that the "Klamath Forest Alliance" wants Biosphere Reserve status for the Klamath-Siskiyou region. The reserve would cover about 13 million acres -- one-third in Oregon and the other two-thirds in California.

Other federal initiatives that pose federal land use control threats are based on so-called "sustainable development" concepts and "global warming" concerns which could have profound impacts on property rights and quality of life.

All such federal efforts dovetail with the 100-year vision of Andy Kerr, former head of the Oregon Natural Resources Council -- which included "re-wilding" 50% of all PRIVATE land in the state, reducing the [human] population in Oregon from 3 million to 1 million and reducing consumption (our standard of living) by 75%.

Anyone seeking more detailed information about these federal land use control programs can contact the OIA Education Center, P.O. Box 230637, Tigard, OR 97281.