Skip to main content

An Oregon State University forestry research team led by graduate student Daniel Donato recently investigated how post-fire salvage logging affects forest regeneration.  Based on his field work--counting seedlings after a forest fire--he found evidence that salvage logging hurts, rather than helps, the growth of new trees.  He submitted the study to the journal Science, which published it online.

You'd think that the Oregon State University would be proud of Daniel Donato and his colleagues.

Think again.

More after the flip.

Cue the War on Science!

From today's L.A. Times (link here ):

A federal agency briefly yanked funding for his project, irate politicians and timber interests e-mailed Donato's dean to complain, congressmen grilled him, and professors at his own university tried unsuccessfully to keep the paper from being published in the print edition of Science.

Columbia Helicopters, Inc., played a key role in the attack on Donato.  In a letter to the OSU Forestry Dean, VP Max Merlich wrote:

"The likelihood of this paper being used successfully against us in court on salvage logging litigation is very high.

"How OSU handles this from this point on could play an important part on our issues," said Merlich, whose Oregon based-company hauls logs by helicopter out of steep or remote sites in national forest timber sales, much of it in salvage projects.

Merlich's comments could not be easily ignored by the College of Forestry, which gets 12% of its research funding from state timber receipts. Columbia describes itself as the largest helicopter logging operation in the world. Three years ago, the wife of Columbia's co-founder donated $1 million to the college for an endowed professorship.

The OSU College of Forestry is not the only beneficiary of Columbia's generosity:

The company largesse also reaches into politics. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, Columbia and its executives have given more than $300,000 to state and federal GOP committees and candidates, including some $22,000 to the Republican author of the salvage bill.

Originally posted to Battling Maxo on Sun Jun 11, 2006 at 12:00 PM PDT.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site