Earthrise Filed Motion for Summary Judgment in Ozarks Logging Case
Earthrise’s team filed its Motion for Summary Judgment on behalf of its client, the Buffalo River Watershed Alliance (BRWA) to halt the Robert’s Gap Project, a large logging project, in the Ozark-St. Francis National Forests of Arkansas.
Recently, Earthrise’s team filed its Motion for Summary Judgment on behalf of its client, the Buffalo River Watershed Alliance (BRWA) to halt the Robert’s Gap Project, a large logging project, in the Ozark-St. Francis National Forests of Arkansas until the Forest Service completes additional environmental analysis. BRWA is a nonprofit entity originally created to prevent the development of a large hog Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation (CAFO) in 2013, which would have harmed the nearby Buffalo National River, the first National River in the United States.
The Robert’s Gap Project again places the Buffalo National River at risk, as both the headwaters of the Buffalo National River and a portion of the Buffalo River itself lie within the Project area. The Forest Service failed to complete baseline analysis of the water quality within the Project area, only promising to do so after it completed its Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for the Project. Further, after the final Environmental Assessment was published, an endangered Indiana bat maternity colony was discovered in the Project area, the first to be discovered in the entire Ozark-St. Francis National Forests. The public, including BRWA, had no opportunity to comment on this discovery or object to Project actions that could harm the Indiana bat.
Earthrise enlisted the help of two of its clinic students to assist with this case: Kelsey Shaw and Megan Sweeney. For Megan Sweeney, this case involves more than just protecting the environment and building her legal skills: