Message - Re: Tree saving policies

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Posted by  Kevin Matthews on April 06, 2003 at 10:55:13:

In Reply to:  Re: Save The Trees posted by NickP on April 05, 2003 at 18:14:07:

Another local perspective...

Here in Oregon, not only are there no fees for urban tree-cutting (and commercial tree-cutting in the national forests is heavily subsidized), but mature conifers typically have significant market value for lumber, even as individual trunks. So residents with a few trees in their yard get regular offers from loggers who would like to come take down the trees, and pay the homeowner a percentage of the price at the mill.

Remarkably, this is considered to be civilized. Land being sold for homes is often clear-cut to realize the lumber value before being put on the market - which makes shopping for a home site extremely discouraging.

In the face of such pressures, the city of Eugene enacted a moderately comprehensive tree protection ordinance as part of a general land use code update a couple of years ago. The local Homebuilders Association (which seems to be very active politically against virtually any kind of land use regulation) sued to the state over the new tree ordinance on procedural grounds.

The Homebuilders won a remand of the ordinance, taking it off the books, on a few narrow procedural points which could have been remedied within weeks. Sadly, our generally-active Eugene Tree Foundation actively lobbied (for political reasons I don't fathom) to let the reneactment of the tree ordinance slide during the initial outrage, and now some two years later, the ordinance has still not been fixed and re-enacted.

Yet the (fundamentally anti-tree-protection) Mayor proudly proclaims our annual Tree City USA award...

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