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Grizzly protections halt logging projects

Thu., July 1, 2010, midnight

A federal judge has blocked three logging projects in the Kootenai National Forest, saying they would harm the area’s endangered grizzly bears.

The Alliance for the Wild Rockies filed the lawsuit in January to stop the projects meant to reduce fire danger and provide commercial logging opportunities.

The environmental group said 25 miles of new and reopened logging roads would threaten the remaining 45 grizzlies in the Cabinet-Yaak area of the Idaho Panhandle and Montana. Most grizzly bears are killed because of encounters with humans near roads, said Michael Garrity, the alliance’s executive director.

The federal government’s recovery goal is at least 100 grizzly bears in the region.

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