Idaho injunction lifted

  A federal judge recently dissolved an injunction that threatened to halt many activities on six Idaho national forests in order to protect endangered salmon. The injunction had prompted angry protests in the forest-dependent community of Salmon, Idaho, earlier this year (HCN, 2/20/95). But U.S. District Judge David Ezra said a biological opinion released March 1 by the National Marine Fisheries Service satisfied the Forest Service's consultation requirement for three species of salmon listed under the Endangered Species Act. Environmentalists who sued the Forest Service in 1992 say they are cautiously optimistic about the new guidelines for protecting fish habitat on the Boise, Challis, Nez Perce, Payette, Salmon and Sawtooth national forests. "(The Fisheries Service) has finally laid out a framework for fixing the forests," says David Bayles of the Pacific Rivers Council. "When push came to shove, it only took the agencies a few weeks to complete a set of protections we can all live with." Fisheries Service biologists used the guidelines to analyze the effects of hundreds of ongoing and planned timber sales, mining operations and grazing allotments. The Forest Service says it will soon know which projects need to be modified, or possibly even halted, to protect streams where salmon spawn


*Paul Larmer