Forest plan rapped

The first revision of a forest management plan in the nation is a flop, says a coalition of environmental groups that monitors activities on South Dakota's Black Hills National Forest. The draft plan emphasizes logging and fails to implement ecosystem management, says Brian Brademeyer, conservation chair of the Black Hills Sierra Club. In 1983, the 1.2 million-acre Black Hills National Forest became the first forest in the lower 48 states to adopt a 10-year management plan (HCN, 9/20/93). Its revision, says the coalition, leaves out land-use guidelines to protect sensitive plant and animal species, as well as recommendations for Wild and Scenic designation of rivers. John Rupe, planning team leader for the national forest, says the agency will not comment on environmentalists' criticisms until the public comment period for the draft forest plan ends Dec. 8. "We thought we had a balanced plan," he says. "The timber industry is upset, too." For a copy of the draft plan or to send comments, write Roberta Moltzen, Forest Supervisor, Black Hills National Forest, RR 2, Box 200, Custer, SD 57750 (605/673-2251).