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Film sheds light on Oregon logging practices


Pacific Rivers (formerly Pacific Rivers Council) has produced a new award‐winning film titled “Behind the Emerald Curtain,” exposing the effect on rivers, drinking water, and communities from logging practices in Oregon.

There will be a free screening hosted by Rockaway Beach Citizens for Watershed Protection, Hoffman Center for the Arts, Pacific Rivers and Lower Nehalem Community Trust in Manzanita on February 26, 7:30 to 9:00 pm at the Hoffman Center for the Arts , 594 Laneda Ave.

A discussion panel is planned after the screening, which will be attended by filmmaker Shane Anderson.

A preview of the film, produced by Pacific Rivers and filmmaker Shane Anderson of North Fork Studios, is available at http://pacificrivers.org/#emeraldvideo.

 

“A fishing trip first exposed me to gross mismanagement of Oregon’s industrial timberlands. I could not believe that the state would allow Oregon’s treasured watersheds to be treated this way and to me it was criminal to allow industry to affect the public commons just to make a few extra bucks. I knew I needed to show the world what was really going on “behind the emerald curtain” so we can move in a positive direction to reform the Oregon Forest Practices Act,” said filmmaker and Pacific Rivers’ board member Shane Anderson.

 

The stories from “Behind the Emerald Curtain” dramatize the issues and potential solutions to these practices. Here are

some of the stories from the film:

  • Kate Taylor moved to Rockaway Beach, Oregon, with her boyfriend to start a travel and fishing guide business. As soon as they arrived, they received a notice in the mail. “Our water was contaminated. It wasn’t meeting the EPA guidelines,” she says in the film. When she asked around, she learned that her drinking water comes from Jetty

Creek watershed, which has been 80 percent clearcut for private timber.

  • John Larison has fished in the Siletz watershed since childhood. Now he sees clearcuts almost wherever he goes due to rampant logging of the watershed over the last 10 years.
  • Nancy Webster is part of the Rockaway Citizens Group for Watershed Protection. Over the last 10 years, she has seen the Jetty Creek watershed go from 8 percent clearcut to 82 percent clearcut. Aerial footage supports her claims. And Rockaway’s water quality has suffered, no longer meeting EPA requirements despite the city’s effort

and expense to treat it.

  • Peter Hayes’ family has been in the timber business since the 1850s. Their company, Hyla Woods, provides a different model for logging private timberlands in Oregon – a model for responsible logging that protects habitat, diversity, and clean water.

Oregon needs comprehensive reform that promotes responsible logging on timberlands.