"The U.S. Forest Service agreed Monday to sell timber to a Ketchikan mill in a roadless area of the Tongass National Forest after the Obama administration's approved the sale.
Orion North timber sale is the first such awarded since Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack announced in May he would personally review all timber sales in roadless areas of national forests in the next year.
He's doing that while the Obama administration takes some time to review the Clinton-era Roadless Area Conservation Rule, which banned road-building on about 58 million acres of national forest land nationwide but has been challenged since it was issued.
Pacific Log and Lumber, the Ketchikan mill, won the contract to clear-cut 4.4 million board-feet of timber -- a relatively small sale - with the option of cutting another 2.4 million board-feet if it's economical. The Ketchikan-area sale is on Revillagigedo Island in an area that borders Misty Fjords National Monument."