Representative Kilmer forms group to preserve the Olympic Peninsula
Representative Derek Kilmer and a group of conservation, timber and local government stakeholders announced the formation of new partnership called the Olympic Peninsula Collaborative. Their goal is to better manage forests within the peninsula.
They said in a statement, “The Olympic Peninsula Collaborative will bring together stakeholders from the environmental community, the timber industry, and representatives from federal and local government around shared goals of increasing timber harvest from the Olympic National Forest while benefitting the environmental quality of our forests and watersheds. The Collaborative will work together and with federal officials to address issues that stand in the way of achieving the stated goals. Ultimately, the purpose is to show we can simultaneously create a more environmentally sound forest, provide for increased, sustainable timber harvests on the Olympic National Forest, and provide economic benefits to timber communities on the Peninsula.”
“I have always said that we don’t have to choose between economic development and environmental protection. This is the beginning of a long-term partnership that I hope will help prove that’s true,” said Kilmer.
According to a release, the goals of the collaborative effort include increasing the amount of acres treated and total harvest volume produced in restoration projects, creating an agreement on the type and locations of treatments, and improving treatment effectiveness.
Organizations and representatives included in the Olympic Peninsula Collaborative include the Wild Olympics Campaign, Cosmo Specialty Fibers, Olympic Peninsula Audubon Society, Sierra Pacific Industries, Simpson Lumber Company, and others.