Thursday, December 29, 2005

Making lawsuits harder

A judge ordered environmentalists to pay a bond in order to delay logging on a plan in Montana.  Justification is that it will help prevent suing legal logging operations in order to drain the coffers of the logging companies.

      The National Forest Service did a full environmental impact statement on this logging proposal.  Since then, the environmental groups in question have gotten a couple of restraining orders while the courts considered, then rejected their complaints.  Now after spending considerable time and money fighting this "hazardous fuels reduction project," the environmental groups claim they don't have the money to post the bond to stop this "illegal" logging. 

I think it’s obvious what the tactic of the environmental group is here, and this kind of thing happens in Oregon all the time.  I’m not surprised that environmental minded groups are not happy with this verdict, as they aren’t typically interested in what the legal system has to say to them.  I wonder if this verdict, in making it very hard for them to use the legal system in the only way they know how, will make lawless protest activity more frequent.

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