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Group races against clock to save redwoods from logging

October 15, 2010 |  1:24 pm

The Save the Redwoods League launched a campaign Friday to raise $7 million to purchase 426 acres that contain one of the last stands of old-growth redwoods in Mendocino County. If the group fails to raise the money by April 1, the property's owner may begin logging it.

The Noyo River Redwoods parcel contains 123 acres of ancient and old redwoods and Douglas fir, according to the group, and the property contains 30% of old-growth redwoods in the Noyo River watershed. The land runs along the historic Skunk Train railroad route, west of Willits, on U.S. 101, known as the Redwood Highway.

"This is an urgent situation in which the public will play a vital role," said Ruskin K. Hartley, executive director of the Save the Redwoods League. "With less than 5% of the ancient redwood forest remaining, we must continue to work diligently to protect redwoods across their range."

A timber harvest plan for the property has been approved by the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, with trees marked for logging.

-- Julie Cart