San Francisco Chronicle
Letters to the Editor
August 18, 1998


Editor -- While I don't question John Campbell's sincerity (Letters, August
6), I must question his characterization of Pacific Lumber Company, and by
extension corporate timber operators, as guardians of "the hard-pressed
North Coast economy."

As a 30-year North Coast resident, county supervisor and congressman, I
have long understood the incongruity between our region's rich resources
and "hard-pressed economy."

The economy of the North Coast bears strong resemblance to that of a Third
World country. The timber corporations exploit our natural resources,
taking huge profits while despoiling the countryside and threatening
long-term job prospects.

Many people seem to be confused about this. They think that
Louisiana-Pacific, Simpson, Pacific Lumber, Sierra Pacific and the rest are
the source of our wealth. After all, don't they provide the jobs?

No, they don't. It is the resources that provide the jobs. It is the
climate, the soils, the clean air and water that protect the jobs. Clearly,
this is the most important legacy we can leave our children. Unfortunately,
the Pacific Lumber Habitat Conservation Plan/Sustained Yield Plan that John
Campbell touts falls far below the mark in this regard.

Pacific Lumber Company has committed over 200 violations of the Forest
Practices Act in the last three years. In an action without precedent,they
have had their license to operate suspended by the state.

John Campbell wants us to think that the Wilson/Feinstein/ Thompson
Headwaters Agreement represents grand largesse on the part of Pacific
Lumber Company. This reminds me of stories of the nobility carriaging
through the countryside, tossing small coins and breadcrumbs to the rabble.

Enough is enough!

Dan Hamburg
Green Party candidate for Governor

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