CLOVIS, California, September 21, 2015 – In an effort to keep the public engaged throughout the forest plan revision process for the Inyo, Sequoia and Sierra National Forests, the U.S. Forest Service is sharing our process for evaluating and identifying lands that may be suitable for recommendation and inclusion in the National Wilderness Preservation System. No new wilderness areas are being designated at this time. Only Congress can make this determination.
We are revising the three forest plans using the 2012 Planning Rule, which requires us to conduct this wilderness evaluation. For more information on our wilderness evaluation process, log on to: http://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/r5/landmanagement/planning/?cid=STELPRD3803608
We welcome input. If you have questions, concerns or feedback about this process, please contact Mark Metcalfe at 707-562-8848 or submit input via http://tinyurl.com/earlyadoptersfpr
In the past year, we’ve opened public discussions on plan revisions as information was available, including:
· June 2014: Preliminary wilderness inventory, step one of the wilderness evaluation process
· August 2014: Began National Environmental Policy Act process for forest plan revisions
· November 2014: Shared issues and concerns heard during public scoping
· January 2015: Sierra Cascade Dialog session about monitoring programs
· May 2015: Update on our wilderness evaluation progress
· June 2015: Inyo National Forest hosted wilderness evaluation public workshop
· July 2015: Draft proposed species of conservation concern lists
We anticipate releasing the draft environmental impact statement and draft forest plans for public comment and review later this year.
For more information about plan revision efforts, visit our website: http://www.fs.usda.gov/goto/r5/FPR